Greek Buck Bucquiem

Co-conspirators Don Pyle and Andrew Zealley give us a good dose of progressive, nuanced, multi-timbral music. Bucquiem is a highlight from Canada and of "electronica" in general, this year. There are only five songs, but their cinematic flow into one another makes Bucquiem a complete statement. Each song features highly original, generally down-tempo combinations of rhythms, nice keyboard sounds and cool sampling techniques mixed with a live touch or two. Friends Kevan Byrne and Kevin Lynn, from King Cobb Steelie, join in to push the groove along, and Caroline Azar (Fifth Column) contributes delicious vocals. This is highly composed music that sounds like it took forever to compose, but it doesn't sound belaboured. The highlights of the disc are "Mewtron Variations 4 and 5." "Variation 4" features Genvieve Heistek's bowed and scraped violin. The sampling technique displayed here is simply awesome, turning one violin into many, then back into one sick pitch bend. NYC artiste Terre Thaemlitz turns "Variation 5" into a super-deliberate construction of warped-tape noises, hovering textures and... silence, the ultimate ambient compositional tool. This is very different than the first Greek Buck record and deserves world-wide props. (Independent)