VA: Goodbye Said the Rain
At-At Records

I can't speak for how the female artists on Goodbye Said the Rain feel about being featured on a “female electronic music” compilation—some artists might understandably regard it as tantamount to ghettoization—but the release itself is certainly strong enough. The geographical dimension alone is noteworthy, with sonic postcards sent from artists rooted in Argentina, Canada, Colombia, Chile, Germany, Puerto Rico, Spain, USA, and Mexico. Stylistically, the collection impresses too with much of it emphasizing dreamy electro-pop and solid club styles.

Carrie (Laurie Becerra) opens the album beautifully with the electronic pop ballad “Summer Dream,” her fragile whisper almost vanishing in the soft breeze of the song's sparkle. The shoegaze pop of Mariena Monjeau's “Escenas Borradas” inhabits a dreamy space too while the melancholy “Holding Hands” by Barcelona-based Iris turns arresting when her shredded voice pings throughout the stereo field. Techno is well-represented by Kate Simko's soulful turn (“In A Star Orbit”), Robin Judge's nuanced textural jack (“Roulette”), and Ilana Ospina's stripped-down house cut (“Tenue”). Purdy Rocks (Chilean Caterina Purdy) brings a harder edge to her writhing club banger “Spiritual Emergency.” Interestingly, AGF (Antye Greie) opts to exclude her distinctive vocalizing from her contribution (“REfail Instrumental”), though the piece remains a representative exemplar of her deconstructive approach. In addition, MC Quio drops rapid-fire rhymes over the hiccupping hip-hop of “Gazon Gasolina,” and Alisu (Chilean Jessica Campos de la Paz) contributes warm flowing IDM (“Impresiones”). The collection ends with “Burbujas,” a lovely electroacoustic setting filled with harp swirls and delicate vocalizing by Arturo en el barco (Puerto Rico-based Angelica Negron). In truth, Goodbye Said the Rain is notable more on grounds of stylistic breadth than for anything gender-related—exactly, one presumes, as the contributing artists themselves would prefer.

February 2008