Various Environments

Environments, while it isn't exactly what I would call groundbreaking, futuristic or mind-blowing, it definitely has its moments of clarity. Maybe because it is the first album in the series, it's a little lacking, certainly not in the same category as their Mushroom Jazz series. This comp features up-and-coming artists such as Afro Mystik, Telefuzz and Radar, but the music isn't all that inspired nor is it particularly inspiring. These down-tempo tracks need a little kick in the pants to take them to another level and some funkier, jazzier melodies and bass lines might do the trick. "Muted Voices," by Landslide, is one of the few tracks that got me bouncing my head and tapping my feet, but they teased me with the horns and got me really excited for no reason. (Om)