V/A – NOW 01

Underscan, an electronica label from Berlin, already surprised me positively with the fantastic Vool EP by Menu:Exit. They have recently started a new compilation series, called NOW, to be released on four limited 12″ records. A full length CD featuring all tracks will be put out to coincide with the fourth and final EP. In the first part of this series, four different acts are participating.

“Now 01” starts with my Dutch countrymen Funckarma. ‘Brim’ is a rather hectic, complex affair. There are melodic elements and nice ambient layers, but the beats going back and forth like a fast tabletennis game make it pretty intense. “Gram” takes things more slowly, at first you think it is playing at the wrong speed. The untraslow and deep bass is joined by some dry clicks after a while and soon by more sound sources, like tweets and scratches. A monotonous, chilly soundscape with a dark hiphop feel.

Somshit from Japan brings us more IDM-like structures, with a crisp, midtempo mixture of clicks and beats and some nice watery background sounds. Gradually the rhythms and sounds change, towards a more melodic final part which I like a lot. Then it’s time for Pytil, apparently a project of Menu:Exit member Ralf Pytlik to finish the first NOW 12″. His tracks ‘Atmachb’ is of a kind of which I can’t get enough. Combining light flowing classical melodies with restained IDM beats, it results in a lovely melancholic track which gives me sweet dreams. Its calmness forms a nice contrast with the hectic start of Funckarma. In other words, a varied record which I quite enjoy.

artist: V/A
label: Underscan
details: 12", 2005 [us008]