Various Waveforms: Halifax Electronic Music Compilation

Andrew Duke's Cognition label presents a varied compilation of electronic music from Halifax. Duke leads off the compilation with two tracks, the great tech-house "Pharmakoi," followed by "Bass for Jennifer," which sums up the simplicity of the track quite well. The rest of the tracks range from tough drum & bass to melodic down-tempo electronica. Most of the artists contribute two tracks each, but some of the better ones include Justin Buckley's sweet and melodic down-tempo "Here," and Andrew Weeks' "Sub Dub," with its spaced-out experimental grooves. (Steve) Blacker contributes the zippy drum & bass track "Youth," as well as the quiet "Chasing Dragons." The toughest tracks on the album are both by Dexter Doolittle: first up is "And His Words Resounded," a fast-paced drum & bass track. He follows that with "No Joke," which is underpinned by a piercing high-frequency noise. A lot goes into this track, with complicated beats and fuzzy noises that have a vaguely heavy metal-ish feel. Special mention should be made of the track titles, which are extremely inventive; my favourite is Rotator's "Our Lady of Perpetual Arpeggio." Taken as a whole, the compilation shows there are good things coming out of Halifax. (Cognition)