Spacetime Continuum - "Only One Sky" - (6:02) 125 BPM
Scanner - "Mothlit" - (6:42) 117 BPM
Ross 154 - "Eath To Our Freinds" - (8:03) 134 BPM
Leo Anibaldi - "Crion" - (5:08) 139 BPM
Review: While a cynic might argue that De:tuned's tenth anniversary celebrations have been more prolonged than Liberace's last party, it has nonetheless resulted in some truly unforgettable electronic music being issued. Here, the selection moves from Spacetime Continuum's atmospheric ambient techno on "Only One Sky" and the dreamy textures of Ross 154's "Eath To Our Freinds" [sic] before a slightly darker and more ominous approach prevails on the slow, nightmarish beats of Scanner's "Mothlit". Closing out this seventh instalment of De:tuned's tenth anniversary celebrations is a more mellow piece - the loose drums and dreamy melodies of Leo Anibaldi's "Crion".
Scanner - "Eros" (Bitten By The Black Dog) - (5:54) 122 BPM
The Future Sound Of London - "Monolith" - (3:59) 93 BPM
Review: There's no doubt that 90s UK techno is popular again - just look at Discogs prices for confirmation of the renewed interest in this form. But what do those revered acts sound like now? The exhaustive 2016 compilation, Brainbox, did much to shine a light on those artists' current trajectory and this follow up remix package also does a fine job. The Black Dog deliver an atmospheric ambient take on Scanner's "Eros", while on Future Sound of London's "Monolith", a somewhat bleaker, dystopian take on ambience is audible. That said, classic UK techno also had a place on the dance floor; Kirk Degiorgio's tunneling take of B12's "World's End" - remixed under his Future/Past name - and Mark Broom's skeletal electro version of the same track show that nearly 25 years later, that this remains the case.
Review: Most box-set releases tend to focus on reissues and re-releases, but on Brainbox De:tuned opts for a different approach. The compilation features artists who defined European techno and electronica's golden age during the 90s, but the Belgian label has commissioned new or unreleased material from these acts. Fans of that era will be thrilled by B12's moody electro, the raw, analogue warmth of John Beltran's "Nineteen Eighty Nine" and the resonating bass-y techno of In:Sync's "Crack in the World". While not every track impresses - Move D's contribution sounds tepid - there are enough jaw-dropping piece of music on this compilation, witness the autumnal majesty of as One's "Where Did He Go & Why" to make Brainbox an essential release.
Review: Robin Rimbaud's Scanner project is an underrated alias among the ambient and drone circles. To us, the dude is an important to the scene as the likes of Tim Hecker and co. and, given the amount of material he's put out across an endless sea of labels, we think he deserves a lot of credit and praise. He returns to the lo-fi Bette imprint, and with him he brings four pieces of "Vex"; "Vex Flow" is an echoing, reverberated mass of spectral electronics that give the impression of deep mist, "Vex Drift" touches upon more glitchy territories with its extremely subtle use of distortion, and "Vex In Venice" opens this sonic landscape further thanks to the help of more tranquil sound waves. Moody, subtle, and utterly sublime.