VA: Seed Records Volume 2

Stylistically diverse compilation from Seed Records that touches almost all the bases—synth-pop, Detroit techno, electronica, dub, electro, Italo, even punk—resulting in a collection that may lack a unifying identity but still offers ample moments of listening pleasure. The sequel to 2003's inaugural volume, Seed Records Volume 2 brings artistic alumni of Tresor (Neil Landstrumm), Mille Plateaux (Mokira), Planet Mu (The Doubtful Guest), and others together for a seventy-two-minute ride.

When individual tracks could so seamlessly fit onto comps from Morr Music (the homemade electro-pop of Sleeps In Oysters' “New Pressed Pennies”) and Tigerbeat6 (the hot-wired synth charge of Skitanja's “Vlob”), chances are the disc's wide-ranging contents won't appeal in their entirety to the average listener (two minutes of EYES' dissonant punk throb is two minutes more than I need) but there are more than enough strong moments to recommend the release. Rather surprisingly, the standouts come from the genre that refuses to die: techno. Top of the pops in this case goes to Tobias Schmidt's fabulous club swinger “Taking Liberties,” whose funky techno rumble and ricocheting melodies make a huge impression, while Neil Landstrumm's pile-driving “Thorpe” and Alexander Robotnick's stampeding slice of rubbery Italo “Can I Have an Ashtray?” aren't far behind. The other standout is Zombi's “Sessuale” which begins the journey with a pretty, synth-streaming cruise through the galaxy. Mokira's (Andreas Tilliander) combustible swarm of percolating electronic fire (“Seven Ply”) and Legowelt's banging mix of chattering drum machines and throbbing synths (“Airplanes In the Rain”) are also noteworthy outings. With contributions from DJ Antoni Maiovvi + MC Fortuna (raving Italo), Mark Verbos (light-speed techno), Jaques Lueder (pummeling techno rumble), and The Doubtful Guest (hyperactive acid-jungle) fleshing out the release, there's clearly more than enough material to sink one's teeth into.

August 2008