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Monday, August 22, 2011

V/A - "These Sounds Will Have to Meet Somewhere in Between Volume 1"

Artist: Various Artists
Album: These Sounds Will Have to Meet Somewhere in Between Volume 1
Year: 2011
Label: Signifer
Genre: IDM, Rhythmic Noise, Technoid, Ambient
Website: www.signifieronline.com
this album on discogs: here


'These Sounds Will Have To Meet...' is the first compilation for new US label Signifier. Immediate comparisons to Tympanik's 'Emerging Organisms' series are quite likely. This is a collection of some rather good idm/noise/ambient with industrial influence. It's extremely refreshing to see a label (especially in the states) who is both interested in releasing this style, as well as one who is releasing good, quality, known acts. Fans of the aforementioned styles should definitely recognize many of the names here. The compilation is 2 discs; the first being the lighter more idm/atmospheric stuff and the second being the noisier, harsher stuff.

Good Stuff:
+ Disc 1. Tonikom starts the first disc off strong, and provides a very good indication of what is to come, with her mid-paced atmospheric track "Insense".  Things move slighly into shoegaze/post rock territory with LAN Formatique's "All Fears Unfelt", with its huge drifting somber pads and sullen melody. The comp takes a brief step in a completely unanticipated direction with Normotone's "Gardens of Sorrows" featuring bits of acoustic guitar, female vocals, and light glitching.  Millipede provides beautiful spacey/retrosound soundtrack ambiance with glitchy beats on "The Measure of The Infinite Dance". Zero Degree provides an amazing track with their trademark 10 minute highly atmospheric rhythmic ambient "Bury Me With The Silence". Then things veer into tribal territory, beginning with the fantastic Geomatic remix of Tzol'kin and continuing through "Le Complexe (Significant Mix)" from Ex_tension that is somewhere between This Morn Omina, Asche, and VAC. Next up is Lucidstatic, providing his trademark brand of atmospheric breakcore, this one is more on the atmospheric side. The disc stays strong until the end, as we journey through a long, dark, brooding piece from Vuxnut that builds from haunting mechanical ambience into crushing atmospheric noise; a pulsating technoish track with creepy spoken word from OTX; a drum and bass piece from Embodi; and a slice of electro from Signifer's own Cruise [Ctrl].

+ Disc 2. The second disc opens equally strongly with Oil 10's typical retrofuture-ish techno, this time with added chopped up, glitchy female vocal sounds, on "Synchro 4 All (Resynchronized  mix)". Next up is a chaotic breakcore track from Signifier's own NXV, followed by a track from Lingouf that really caught me by surprise - it's dark dubstep! Quite good too, I might add.  After that there are a few misses which fail to gain my interest, however we move into technoid territory with a great, atmospheric track from Syntech, followed by a slightly less interesting piece from Disharmony + LPF12 which still manages some really interesting alien atmospheres. Autovoice keeps the trend going with his retrofuturish track "Thought Machine", with it's spaceship ambiance. The end of the disc dives full speed ahead into into full on rhythmic noise madness, beginning with "S.O.S. From Overseas", a typical highly crunchy outing from Greyhound. Next we have the brutal, chaotic wall of sound crush that is "Scab Collector" from WASTE; a highly distorted, repetitive technoid piece from Fractured Transmission; and a more atmospheric rhythmic noise track from Worms of the Earth with chopped up female vocals. All in all, this disc is a little weaker in my opinion, but there are still many solid tracks.

Bad stuff:
- Honestly, in it's 27 track duration, there are very few weak links to be found. There are a few bombs though, including Dazzling Malicious' comically amateur...whatever he is going for, Aphorism's structureless mess of random sounds, and Kraftmaschine's pointless 5 minutes of unchanging fuzz.

Like all compilations, there is a good deal of variation here and not everyone is going to like every track. However, the signal to noise ratio is quite high, and there are many, many more solid tracks than there are weak ones. Props to Signifier for gathering such a good collection of material from these styles of music, and I hope to be reviewing many more of these compilations down the line. Definitely a must check out for fans of idm/ambient/noise / Tympanik, Hymen, Ant Zen, Hands, Force of Nature, Hive, etc!

Overall Rating:

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