Review: Moscow based producer Anton Kubikov is one of the key figures of the Russian electronic music scene. His recent dub techno exploits have been heard on local labels like Heisenberg and his own Pro-tez imprint. Kubikov's relationship to Kompakt extends years back, when his SCSI-9 project (with Maxim Milyutenko) made its debut and has since several releases for the label thus far. It's a predominantly atmospheric affair on his new LP entitled Whatness. The slightly Italo tainted horror soundtracks of "Liquid Mirror" or the title track soon give way to seductive soundscapes of "Other The Sea" which wouldn't have sounded out of place on one of the label's famed Pop Ambient collections while tracks like "Kurt's Forest" or "April" have that Balearic tinged style of chill-out about them that will appeal to fans of International Feel or Music From Memory. Elsewhere the modern classical bliss piece "Pia" is quite a gorgeous moment but he saves the best for last on the mesmerising shoegaze style drones of "Entrance"
Review: The latest release on AE Recordings showcases a whole host of excellent producers versed in the language of icy Scandinavian techno. Anton Kubikov is up first with the forlorn leads and dubby ripples of "When Is Deep", which is followed up by a wonderfully dusty deep house locomotive from Ohm & Octal Industries. Thor gets into a strident micro house groove on "Who Stole My Yacht", peppering the swung drums with plenty of immersion chamber echoes and pings. SCSI9 makes a welcome return to close the record out with "Aetherius", a classic minimal tech house bouncer with plenty of spooky atmospherics on top of the mid-00s flavoured synth hooks.
Review: The third and final part in Dial's compilation series brings together some well-known names and emerging producers. Tracey opens up the release with the dreamy, downtempo "Chapter 1", while on "Cuba", Lerosa delivers a fine, stripped back percussive track, underpinned by a throbbing bass. Anton Kubikov's "Night Road Blue" delivers the kind of mysterious, expansive techno that the label is best known for - with the added bonus of a rubbery double bass - and in contrast, Siamak Amidi brings the compilation down a weirder route with the woozy soundscapes and ticking percussion of "Kandoo", while DJ Jus-Ed impresses as always with the lithe claps and murky bass of "Synth Sex".
Review: Well it's that time of the year again. Wolfgang Voight compiles the best in ambient for his beloved label and it's more of the same high calibre ambient excursions you'd expect, like in previous editions. Starting off in truly breathtaking fashion with Stephan Matieu's "April Im Oktober", we're then treated to some new material by British icons The Orb, who present us with "Alpine Dawn" further testament to their otherworldly sense for sound. Label mainstay Mikkel Metal appears also with the sombre yet mesmerising cathedral drone of "Titan", as does Leandro Fresco, twice in fact. With both his sublime remix of Dave DK's "Veira" and his own "Configuracion de Atequa" featuring gorgeously uplifting tones reminiscent of old Gas material. Speaking of which, Voight himself appears with his mindblowing "Ruckverzauberung" from 2012 getting a brilliant modern revision by Thore Pfeiffer. Yet again, it goes without saying; this is essential listening.
Review: Presenting yet another year of the more reflective end of the Kompakt sound world, the Pop Ambient series is reprised to invite both label favourites and new additions to offer a soothing ambience to tickle at your synapses. Wolfgang Voigt is, as ever, unmatchable in his regality both remixing Michael Mayer and offering his own, orchestra-fuelled study in haunting, shapeless dynamics. Mikkel Metal allows the most subtle of pulses in to anchor his own droning arrangement, while the likes of Triola offer up a lighter tone marked out by more plaintive synthesiser tones. If you need a quality-assured selection of refined meditation music, this is the compilation for you.