Apr 2012 02

Wounds of the Earth - Compilation III: IDMVarious Artists
Category: Compilation
Album: Wounds of the Earth Compilation III
Stars: 5
Blurb: Probably the best introduction to the current state of dark, down-tempo electronic music… and it’s totally free!


Wounds of the Earth - Compilation III: Dark AmbientDan Barrett, the man behind both rhythmic noise act Worms of the Earth and the webzine Wounds of the Earth, offers a comprehensive glimpse of the current rising stars and future artists of note in the dark IDM and ambient scene. Given its status as an entirely free compilation with well over two hours of music, there’s no reason not to download this amazing collection. It’s loosely divided into two categories, IDM and dark ambient, but those are more loose guidelines than anything else. Much of the material in the first category is itself ambient but for the presence of slow, barely-there rhythms, and between the harsh power electronics of The Peoples Republic of Europe’s “Gleise 518G” and the heavy bludgeoning martial soundscapes of Galvanax’s “My Thousand Other Forms,” the dark ambient collection is hardly the collection of sleepy minor-key drones you might expect. There isn’t a single bad or even boring track on here, and there’s also a surprising amount of variety. Standout tracks include Nors’klh’s “The Untitled (2010),” which features wordless female vocals layered over an achingly slow but old-school sounding EBM rhythm, a live version of Famine’s “Webcam Politics” that throws a hint of vintage arcade game inspired music over breakbeats and distorted keyboards, and False Mirror’s evocative “Charybdis,” which sounds a bit like a night on a deserted beach, complete with twittering insect-like sounds. Roto Visage’s “The Death of Kotzwara” sounds like incidental music from a horror movie with its string pads and bits of piano, while Nihili Christi’s “Salt on My Wounds” is practically the definition of industrial ambient with layers of distorted hums blurring together like an evil factory. There’s even a gothic ballad, “N,” performed by SE and sung by Daniel Tompkins of metal band TesseracT. A number of artists here will be familiar to fans of dark electronic music in general and the Tympanik Audio label specifically (i.e. Access to Arasaka, Lucidstatic, Famine, and Dirk Geiger), but Barrett has done an amazing job putting together a mix that includes both fairly well known acts and newcomers to the scene. It’s a picture-perfect glimpse of exactly what’s happening in dark down-tempo music today and where things might be headed tomorrow.
Track list:
Disc 1: IDM

  1. C.DB.SN – A Silent Sea
  2. Access to Arasaka – Seraphic Variete
  3. Dirk Geiger – Autumn Life (Cold January Mix)
  4. Lucidstatic – Welts
  5. Famine – Webcam Politics (Live 2006)
  6. Worms of the Earth – Mul As-iku
  7. Circle Six – Development
  8. Mzai – Here They Are Now
  9. Enab.led – Drowning Errors (V.1)
  10. Nors’klh – The Untitled (2010)
  11. Pleq – The Pain of the City
  12. SE and Daniel Tompkins – N

Disc 2: Dark Ambient

  1. False Mirror – Charybdis
  2. Therradaemon – Tekel
  3. Dead Man’s Hill – Haunted Castle
  4. Roto Visage – The Death of Kotzwara
  5. Phaenon – Disturbed Surface (Sharp Remix)
  6. The Peoples Republic of Europe – Gleise 518G
  7. Candle Nine – Demeanor
  8. Famine – The Art Pauline
  9. Galvanax – My Thousand Other Forms
  10. Svartsinn – Towards the Dark and Cold
  11. Mystified – Spellbound
  12. Nihili Christi – Salt on My Wounds
  13. Bunk Data – Eyes Burned with Anguish
  14. Monade – Traveling to the Elfenkingdom

Wounds of the Earth Website http://woundsoftheearth.blogspot.com
Wounds of the Earth MySpace http://www.myspace.com/woundsoftheearth
Wounds of the Earth Facebook https://www.facebook.com/woundsoftheearthblog
Wounds of the Earth Bandcamp http://woundsoftheearth.bandcamp.com
Matthew Johnson (infinitywaltz)

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