by: Zero Sharp
I'm not really sure how to give a name to this first release from the new Canadian label Tribal Treble so I won't try. The idea behind it is good: the release is actually two seperate albums rolled into one package. The two are only marginally related so I'll speak of the two seperately.
The first eight tracks on the CD make up the Deselect Mindbox EP by Abstract Polygon. It's hard to find a particular genre to classify the feel of the album under; some of the tracks feel close to drum and bass, while others feel much more like glitch/idm type stuff. Of the former, the tracks Naughty Scatterplot, jazzy thoughts in deconstruction, and Fiber Optix, tech step meets even older school sounds, hold together well are are interesting takes on the styles. Of the latter, Juxtaposition and Snaer are both solid tracks, mellow rollers with nice melodies assembled from well crafted sounds. Somewhere inbetween, F*ck is a great wacked-out drum programming reminding me a little of the old digital hardcore. The only downside is really that the album is pretty much all across the board; there's no particular coherence to it all except for the attention paid to detail. Almost all of the tracks are really good listens, but it just doesn't quite fit together somehow.
The second half of the of the CD is "McNoo's Third Day of Second Grade" by mad EP, a classically trained cellist with many years experience. His style is like drum and bass in the same way digital hardcore is. It has the same kinds of rythyms and speeds, but the feel and heart of the tracks is somewhat different. I use the comparison to digital hardcore for a reason, his style seems to come from several of the same places as the old school stuff out there. Tracks like Rumble Bun Bounce almost sound like they could be in any good 97 Tech Step set, and Mathamaddeck Part One is part old school dnb mash up, part interesting melody. There's a good bit of chopped up techno beats in some of the other tracks so don't worry, it's not all drum and bass. Even though there are several styles represented here; it flows fairly well as an album.
If you don't like hardcore and weird techno, this might not be the CD that will get you into it. It's a good, solid release, though, and I would highly recommend giving it a try. If you do like hardcore techno and the like... what are you waiting for?