aus: ReCollected

ReCollected compiles fifteen remixes aus (Tokyo, Japan-based Yasuhiko Fukuzono and flau associate) created between 2006 and 2012 into a seventy-minute set. Two things bear mention upfront: first, the artists given the aus treatment are a diverse lot, which makes for an album rich in contrast; and secondly, rather than that diversity resulting in a lack of cohesiveness, the album ends up feeling unified due to the stylistic consistency aus imposes upon their tracks. His is an assured hand, for sure, and one as capable of tackling pieces by instrumental hip-hop producers Geskia! and Fedaden and ambient-classical artists Christoph Berg (aka Field Rotation) and pianist Henning Schmiedt.

Geskia!'s “Requiem for Genome” opens the set strongly with a bass-prodded body-mover, followed by a track also inflected with hip-hop flavour, even if The Storms' “Letter on the 44th Day” opts for sun-kissed languor over insistent rhythmic thrust. But though the style is revisited later on in Origamibiro's “Sedimental Value,” numerous twists and turns occur thereafter, with ReCollected never staying in any one place for very long. Sparkling electronica is well-accounted for in uplifting tunes by Miyauchi Yuri (“Mirea_”) and Park Avenue Music (“Cutter”), while strings-laced, classical-ambient splendour is provided by Northerner (“Direction”) and Christoph Berg (“Interlude”).

Among the most memorable pieces are Tujiko Noriko's “Let Me See Your Face” (largely for the earworm impact of the vocal melodies) and Miou Miou's “Summe Volume,” whose marriage of delicate French singing and slow-motion techno plays like some collaboration between a French vocalist and Ezekiel Honig. Throughout the set, Fukuzono liberally lathers the material with textural detail and all manner of instrumental colour (never more so than during Matryoshka's paradisiacal “Anesthetic”), making for an album so sonically rich and melodious, it plays like candy floss for the ears.

May 2013