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spontaneous human combustion
hymen   1997
  see also
"polycontrale contra punkte"
"coincidentia oppositorum"
"in medias res"
"003 + 024 + 2X = 727"
hymen website
official beefcake website

album rating: 3

submitted by anton on 4-Feb-2000
back in 1997 this 4-track vinyl record was the indication of things to come. I can only imagine what kind of response it got back then; now, almost three years later, this record will still strike you as incredibly innovative and unique.

as with "polycontrale contra punkte", this record creates "atmospheric" drum'n'bass full of beautiful melodies, complex drum programming carries you away while you play the record again and again. harsh drum'n'bass rhythms are masterfully accentuated by graceful soft melodies, and the number of unique samples used is simply astonishing.

"a1" features a slow very atmospheric beginning with unique mixture of samples. the perfect unstructured tranquility filled with flowing melody and sparse chaotic splashes opens the track. the beats slowly start swirling on the background building the melody; advancing, collapsing and starting again, more and more of them engage in the furious dance constructing rough drum'n'bass patterns that become denser and denser as the song progresses. at the same time mellow sequences never leave the background creating a contrast with percussion chaos.

"a3" starts out with rather heavy bass-filled percussion and a whole array of unique shaped sounds. the percussion suddenly stops replaced by an incredible combination of sampled classic piano passages seamlessly blended together with dense chaotic drum'n'bass. percussion on this track seems to live its own life, pulsing and swirling, advancing and teasing the listener. several times during the song the track pauses for an instance allowing the listener to get some air.

"a2" tickles your ears with subtle beats while waves of soft rich melody continue to build surreal ambiance filled with myriad of small noises. it is by far the most cohesive and softest track on the record.

"a4", the last track on the record, builds upon a deformed heavy beat surrounded by quickly changing distorted pulses.

as usual with any beefcake work, "spontaneous human combustion", is a brilliant record that simply cannot be missed. a unique atmospheric sound creates the most perfect and visually engaging atmospheres.

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