V/A DelectronicT v03
By Marcus Pan
In 2000 I lauded the Detroit Electronica
Coalition's D[electronic]T compilation(1) release for it's layout,
design, brilliant track choices and fine bands. In 2002 I did much of the same
when D[electronic]T 2(2) hit the streets. Now it's 2004, and keeping
their two year schedule going, the Detroit Electronica Coalition drop v03 of
this now six year series running.
Unfortunately, I can not laud DelectronicT v03 as
highly as the first two. I'm not sure if it's because they're getting looser in
their track choices, or maybe it seems their liner notes and jacket aren't as
well done and complete as before. Or maybe it's just time to quit while you're
ahead, to quote an old sage. Either way, let's look closer at DelectronicT
V03 and see if we can find some gems hidden in here.
We'll see some familiar faces: Ceoxime, Crash Site 68,
Silvercord, 4FR. We'll see some new faces: Doc Raymond, Entluften, Voltage
Controlled Ficus. We'll explore remixes and dabble in experimental. We'll trip
hop our way through the eighteen tracks on the CD if we can and see what we
come out the end...
4FR "Who Will Survive Us?"
with a funk-driven chord jam to start going into a wall-of-sound style that can
get a trite messy. It's not bad, most especially the spoken word parts over the
previously mentioned chord jam. Rhythm is simple and neat. Kicks off
DelectronicT 3 uneventfully.
Entluften "Broken Mold"
Here starts the
funky-filled trip hop trancey shizzitz. Coalescing synthesizer licks lap at
each other in this newcomer's Broken Mold tune. Vocals have a Trent
Reznor sound to them. It's good...but it's not something you'll be digging
after it's gone. Nice musical qualities though, inside the instrumentation.
Venereal Injection "S & M"
it's Detroit, so we need some sex. Fast paced and furious, drum slams are a
major part of this song. That doesn't mean it has a good rhythm - it just means
there's a lot of it. The drums are actually pretty boring. I'm also not overly
impressed with the mixing done here either. Onward...
Doc Raymond "House of Bang (Planetary Control
A DJ here, I'm wondering if he has anything to offer since so far
I'm only mildly entertained. Blubbery rhythms open House of Bang and
high hats and cymbals join the fray, making it seem like this is definitely
going to be a drum 'n bass track. Bass slides in smoothly like a John to a
well-used hooker. Raymond adds more ticks, tacks and rhythmic pulses as the
track moves along with the end result of flattening the first three tracks of
the compilation and becoming our first highlight.
Mutual Hate Society "Blueberry Tart"
Interesting song name...I'm not sure whether to envision a pastry or a
teenage hooker in a blue g-string. It's an interesting, off-kilter tune that
doesn't ever seem to pick up the speed it needs to become something great.
Voltage Controlled Ficus "The Drill"
Nothing but buzzing beats and percussive rhythms. VCF will throw in
some annoying bee-like synthesizer sounds, but the track does nothing for me.
Just a bunch of kids fucking around with a Roland, I'm thinking.
Toybreaker Path of Logical"
to be stuck in an experimental sequence as we hit the center of DelectronicT
V03. Toybreaker's Path of Logical is nothing but noise. I see no
merit in this and it takes too long to go away. Stop it please.
Finally we come to a
rhythm again. Old school sounding goth rock with sweet melodies overlayed on
top. Again I'm not impressed with the production of the track and I'm not
overly joyed with the vocals either. Take uses too many flats to come
out sounding more crooked than it should. The vocalist doesn't even attempt to
stay on the same key as the music.
Ceoxime "Dirty and Used"
Ceoxime is a staple of
the DT collections. Still floaty and key-based, but Dirty and Used is
much more clashing than their previous work. Like Silvercord's previous
Take song, Dirty and Used sounds crooked and off base. Not their
best outing, here.
I've been known to
twitch from a good hummer too, but I'm not so sure that's what Humachine meant
here. I find myself reminded of Puncture(3), a band I haven't thought about in
years. Twitch could possibly be one of the very few standout gems on
this compilation, with its muted guitar riffwork and simple but effective
synthesizers. This could be due to its simplistic straightforward make-up, or
because of my affinity for blowjobs.
Digital Terror Netwerk "Fix"
Nice fat back drums.
We've fully left behind the whole ambient noise (read: non music) portion of
the disc by now. The problem with Fix is it doesn't do much, really.
Adds in the occasional synth melody, but otherwise just kind of stomps along
goose stepping with its sliding bass and unchanging drums.
Apraxia "Dogma Raga"
folky with siren like wails and acoustic strums, windy sliding synth bubbles
are interspersed throughout. Other than interesting bongo rhythms, Dogma
Raga is more annoying than musical. I don't dig the off key ghostly wailing
Melody Mendis provides...not even for the short length of time Dogma
Crash Site 68 "Exostatic (Ceoxime Re:mix)"
High speed trance with barely noticeable vocals about, Exostatic
isn't bad at all. While it's nothing wonderfully original, it's worthy of
hitting your next rave with, glow sticks and all.
The Morning Star "Fight the Future"
Morning Star, Gray plays "mouth." Hah! Funks in right from the start. Closes
(almost) the CD nicely, even with it's mono-blared vocal chorus and singing
done through what might be a fencer's mask.
Not really sure what these annoying
closing noisy short tracks are supposed to be. I'd say they were a production
error if not for the fact that they're listed on the liner notes as done by
Verzerren with a web address that points to the D[electronic]T web pages
numbering up to...uh oh...four. If four is coming, please be a little more
choosy with the tracks!
(1) In Legends
Immune was reviewed way back in Legends