Various Beautiful Noise (The Apocalypse)

Noise Factory Records lays down a bit of a mission statement with this collection of ambient post rock from a group of mostly Toronto-based musicians. Chicago remains the primary touchstone for these kinds of efforts, and while there are some excellent contributions, the compilation tends to drift a bit aimlessly, particularly over the all-too-similar second half. DJ Serpent One and junglist Fwark (aka Victor Szabo) get things started on the good foot with ambient pieces that understand trippier elements, and in Fwark's case, adds a harder edge to keep things interesting. Tetrezene sticks close to the post rock proceedings with an effort that recalls Ilium and other Hefty Records projects, but Do Make Say Think loses the path on their meandering eight-minute opus. With the exception of Tom Spacey, who gets a little excited towards the end of his contribution, the second half is a bit snoozy - slow, distorted ambient numbers that bleed together but not quickly enough. There's some loveliness, but not a lot of new ideas here. (Noise Factory)