Various Dig Your Roots: Electronic Dance

An initiative of the National Campus and Community Radio Association (the good folks that bring you !Earshot), the Dig Your Roots series of compilations aim to develop and promote independent acts from coast to coast in all genres. Last year’s hip-hop edition was a big success, so they’re at it again this month with two simultaneous releases — a spoken word collection and this electro/dance set. The tunes here fall more towards the electro half of that equation — this isn’t really dance music as we know it, but mostly laptop-based beatscapes. The selections admirably cover every region of the country, though some cities merit more than one inclusion. Montreal’s Vitaminsforyou take a page out of Manitoba’s (Dan Snaith) songbook with the lovely "Quand Peanut Fait Dodo,” which features the sounds of splashing water and walking through snow over an acoustic guitar line and ambient blips and bleeps. The brilliantly-named East Coast Disaster Complex (from Victoria, natch) offer up the melodic "Robbiemart,” where New Deal-esque keyboards meet Four Tet’s cheekiness. Unfortunately, the disc opens on a weak note with Alexandre’s "Qu’elle a Dit,” which suffers from cliché beats and tinny production. (Dig Your Roots/NCRA)