Sinner DC: Montage
Ai Records

Ai upholds its ‘Quality Electronic Music' rep with Montage, a five-track vinyl outing by Sinner DC (bassist Julien Amey, drummer Steve Mamie, and toy-organist, guitarist and vocalist Manuel Bravo). Much credit goes to the Swiss outfit's friends who remixed tracks from the group's Mount Age debut album for the half-hour release. It's the EP's stylistic range, however, that impresses most.

Mjuc (Tokyo-based Hideaki Takahashi) starts things off on a high note with a tastefully elegant microhouse treatment of “No Day Without You” where swooning vocal chants contrast with the aggressive squalls that ring out during the tune's surging passages. Water Lilly imbues “Lady March” with a jaunty electro-techno swing whose pulsating sparkle grows progressively more insistent and infectious as the tune unfolds. Piano Magic's “Wintertown” treatment signals the EP's move into a more experimental zone. The group opens the song in dreamy ambient mode with willowy clouds drifting from one channel to the other amidst pounding beats and whispered vocals. The disc's major departure from the EP norm arrives in Experimental Audio Researcher Sonic Boom's ten-minute “Everything Is Sand,” a becalmed setting of shifting patterns that opts for a meditative rather than ear-shattering style. A simple, oscillating keyboard figure acts as the tune's nucleus which allows shuddering effects to reverberate freely around it without destroying its focus. Sinner DC itself appear to close the disc with “Showdown Aorta,” a dramatic, sweeping stomp of vocodered techno-throb.

June 2007