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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Stendeck - "Scintilla"

Artist: Stendeck
Album: Scintilla
Year: 2011
Label: Tympanik
Genre: Electronica, IDM, Ambient
Website: www.stendeck.com
this album on discogs: here



Scintilla is the highly awaited follow up to 2009's "Sonnambula". Once again, Stendeck brings us his trademark style of emotional electonic music, with hints of IDM and industrial flavor. This album is actually very similar in mood to recent Autoclav1.1 works such as "Love No Longer Lives Here". It has that same heavy, somber-yet-light atmosphere coupled with straight ahead, almost rock sounding drums, with pretty melodies and harmonies. Stendeck retains a little bit of his sound from older albums when he uses distorted beats, but this one is definitely much more similar to "Sonnambula" than "Faces". Pretty much gone is the dark grittiness of the older releases, in favor of bigger, cleaner production, and perhaps a slightly different palate of emotions.

Good stuff:
+ If you liked his previous work you will like this one. He brings his signature melancholic waves of synths and flurry of percussion. It's not quite as sad or dark, but it has a unique flavor to it, not terribly unlike "Sonnambula". These are well written, complex songs with many elements that work together very well.
+ His pads and melodies and gorgeous and emotive as always. Extremely atmospheric.
+ The production is his best work yet. It is quite a bit cleaner than his older albums, but the production has taken huge leaps forward. When he uses distorted beats now (they only appear in a handful of songs), they don't sound as flimsy or nasty, but they still give it "that stendeck sound", just better.
+ Whereas "Sonnambula" felt like one 60 minute song to me, the tracks on "Scintilla" are a little more varied. The mood is still very, almost overly, consistent throughout, but every song doesn't sound exactly the same.

Bad stuff:
- This is just my personal preference, but I miss the dark grittiness of his old albums like "Faces". I would've liked less straight forward beats as well, with more clicky, glitchy stuff.
- The only real negative thing I have to say about this album is that once again, similar to "Sonnambula", the songs are all very similar in sound/style/speed, and I generally get kind of bored after 6 or 7 songs in a row. However, the songs on their own are all pretty good.

Yet another solid release for Stendeck. If you liked his previous work than you are sure to enjoy this. As I mentioned, it is lighter and cleaner, but that has its own merits. It is still incredibly heavy emotionally with much melancholy & beautiful atmosphere. If you are a fan of Tympanik, especially Autoclav1.1, than you will love this.

Overall Rating:

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