Various Pop Ambient 2010

Another year, another peerless collection of diapasonal bliss, unsurprisingly, from the German makers of taste. Last year's trend of "home listening/modern classical" (to use Boomkat's terminology) still holds a little sway, as on Jurgen Paape's fanfare, plus strings, "864M," and Wolfgang Voigt's descriptively named "Zither Und Horn." Dominant is a kind of aspirated electronic aesthetic that slips mortar-like between the cracks of piano, guitar and other acoustic instruments. On Marsen Jules' "The Sound of One Lip Kissing," it is the enormous chamber reverb that discharges each piano note and cymbal strike. On DJ Koze's "Bodenwiech," it is the pitch-bent note that waltzes drunkenly between the piano and bass. The keynote track this year comes from Bvdub on closer "Will You Know Where to Find Me." It's an ever-unfolding weather system that spills guitar phrases and keening vocals, resembling White Clouds Drift On And On, his Echospace double CD from last year. (Kompakt)