this compilation could be considered a "little brother" of clicks+cuts series. essentially, in clicks and cuts genre I look for a balance between rigid minimal structures and soft melodic elements. paradoxically, click+cuts series are too restricted with their status of all-encompassing cataloguing of the scene, "staedtizism," on the other hand, deals with the side of the genre that I truly enjoy.
the whole cd has a dark melancholic feel to it, mixing atonal smooth melodic touches with clicking, breaking, transparent thread of splintery mechanized sounds. starting with two incredible tracks by gramm and vladislav delay - spacey, minimal, elegant and strangely emotional. those two pieces by themselves make this compilation worth buying. strange mysterious world filled with slowly developing melody, tiny living organisms, moving, pulsing, breathing among soft melodic touches of keys.
the cd continues with cut-up waves of twitching quirky electronica by sun electric, that always remain almost extravagantly minimal, and yet with a peculiar soul behind it - warm, tender, teasing and comforting. deep bass humming is contrasted by tiny little digital skips. it might not be as engaging as previous tracks, but it sets a nice atmosphere for simply incredible "reins" by kit clayton - resonating echoing atonal keys with snapping glitchy percussion; the track has melody and interesting almost playful and yet highly dignified appeal. it borders somewhere in between strict clicks and cuts minimalism and traditional idm. ople continues much in the same vein with plenty of little hisses and scratches thrown on top of quite addictive rhythmic track.
trash aesthetic approaches the genre with more flowing comsposition, something i would still enjoy, and yet prefer exotic irregular shapes of vladislav delay. almost dubby, pleasantly atonal, laid-back atmosphere of thomas fehlmann loses some of the glitch appeal, trading it for more acceptable universal sound. finally, closing tracks by modernist and burnt friedman move even more into the techno genre, losing transparent geometric appeal of opening tracks, but I guess this is necessary to realize how phenomenal those were to being with.
the initial appeal of this melodic glitch atmosphere is quite obvious - contrast of warm waves of sound punctuated with splintery cold drops of precise minimal electronica. but it takes so much more to convert this aggressively minimal world into something meaningful - a task that the likes of vladislav delay has accomplished with impeccable style and sense of composition.
cold atonal lines tracing their way through the layers of glitches; little hisses scratch the smooth surface of flowing elongated strings, sending ripples of crackling static, brushing against your ears with its cool rugged edges. I can almost sense the shape of music, strangely voluptuous, geometric; smooth straight lines and clean curves assembled with precision - both organic and mechanized, a simple yet incredibly effective contrast.
it is almost required that you use the headphones to listen to releases like that - every little element, every pause and little percussion drop, every small frequency and key sequence counts. the delays, the irregularities, the pauses; a sequence of clicks and skips, accentuating the melody, the silence. it is an intricate labyrinth where pauses and silence play the role of mirrors, reflecting and extending the melody.
I wonder why this music is not as popular as I thought it should be. is it too abstract, too minimal, too "cool"? it is amazing how "involved" this music is, once you realize how well the composition works, deceiving a casual listener with seeming simplicity. it is so emotional, and yet can leave up to any puritan idm standards. maybe it takes a long time to arrive to this style - one has to go through all the styles preceding this genre to understand what exactly is the goal here, what are the roots and the influences.
all in all, I would definitely recommend this compilation to anyone that is looking into the warmer side of glitch; as long as you realize how many different sides of the genre are portrayed here, you will be able to enjoy this compilation as much as i did.