Reviewed by dan p (gusset)
This album presets new comers to Planet Mu a great guide of what to expect from the electronic music label and this double CD release is as varied as it is well endowed. Imodium from the forth coming Gasman album is a beautiful, ethereal piece to start the album of with before switching to the opposite extreme of the electronic music spectrum with Chevron's fast moving, bass heavy, cut-up Deep End Version of Swimming Lessons. OOO then manages to combine these two extremes into one striking whole.
Jega's Theme From 1998 is a drill and bass workout that sounds totally fresh even in 2004 (although for all I know it was written a few months ago.) Detach'i's Kahknkunt sounds as if it would have fitted perfectly onto his mmale and ffemale album with its relentless pounding synth basses and fast moving lead lines and electro drums. Julian Fane is a new face to the label and looks as if he will be presenting a similar ambient style to that of Gasman or Ambulance.
Subjex' Funkynightmare is a slab of electro hip-hop worthy of Luke Vibert, who appears later on an acid tip with the track Homework from the 2002 Mu 12" of the same name. Lexaunculpt's Samus is a piece of arcade game style music that simply sounds far too good to ever be used in the style of game it brings to mind.
Patrick Wolf is another new face, creating song based IDM which will satisfy those missing Capitol K from the roster. Wolf's almost Dexy's style vocals, with catchy sing-along chorus that will be stuck in your head long after hearing it, give the impression he could also being signed to a larger label after an album or two. Fluoroscopic Kid (along with DJ Hekla and Hrvatski) do their best to knock that tune out of your head with Soft Drink Jihad, it's evil bass stabs crying out for a good club PA, but it's not until the more folk influenced ending to the first CD something will take over in there. Guitar based tunes from Frog Pocket and an alternate version of Leafcutter John's In a House or a Soul are a lovely warm relaxed ending to disk one.
The second disk also starts off gently with new Joseph Nothing track Piazza Of Tomorrow, then again throws you in at the deep end with Shitmat’s Shoplifting Gabba - bagpipes and gabba have never sounded so good! - finally letting you hear the end of the track after the 7" that got stuck in the run out groove. More of the Mu 7" series are represented with tracks from Electronic Music Composer, Nautilis, Local, Ambulance and Weaver001.
Phthalocyanine's Ethiopian Runner is more beat laden that the material on his 99 Tracks Fer 1 Track album but still retaining all of the emotional intensity of those recordings. Slow effect laden guitar picking and the sporadic piano crescendos of Steve Beresford resonate on Urban Myth & Steve Beresford's Sun Propeller, showing what's possible when live instruments and laptops are brought together for an improvised performance.
It's good to hear Frost Jockey's acid again, as he hasn't been seen on Mu since 2000. Here he works along side Dykehouse creating something that sounds like a cross between their respective styles and unlike what either would have produced on their own.
Venetian Snares' Epstein-Horshack Lids, originally the B side from the Einstein-Rosen Bridge 12", shows what can be done with sample based breakcore and a jungle bass-line.
Conspiracy Of The Mankind from the Guilty Connector 7" chronicles the decent of a few found sounds into the screaming bowels of noisecore before Hrvatski's Gemini (Revision) finishes off the album as it's jazz keys drown in a sea of tranquil phasing.
In all, this is an incredibly varied collection of electronic music that illustrates the diversity of the Planet Mu roster from the smallest, one release artist to the big name venue fillers. A great introduction to the label and to the genre as a whole with enough new material to keep the obsessive collectors happy, and at the end of it, hopefully everyone will be left wanting more.
- Shitmat - Shopliftin' Gabba
- Jansky Noise & Speedranch - Mi^grate
- µ-Ziq - Bilious Paths
- Lexaunculpt - The Blurring Of Trees
- Ambulance - The Curse Of Vale Do Lobo
- Venetian Snares - Winter In The Belly Of A Snake
- Electronic Music Composer - Suggested Surgery
- Local - They Are Local
- Leafcutter John - The Housebound Spirit
- Various - Children Of Mu
- Venetian Snares - Higgins Ultra Low Track Glue Funk Hits 1972-2006
- Joseph Nothing - Dreamland Idle Orchestra
- Nautilis - Are You An Axolotl
- DJ Hekla - Eruption 1970
- Nautilis - Sketches Vol.1
- Decal - 404 Not Found
- Luke Vibert - Homewerk
- Kettel - Tadley Management E.P.
- Hellfish - Meat Machine Broadcast System
- Dykehouse - Dynamic Obsolescence
- Tim Tetlow - Cyrenic
- Electric Company - Slow Food
- Venetian Snares - Songs About My Cats
- o9 - No Delay For Days