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0id – Systems Of Mercy

 - Systems Of Mercy

CD, Lagunamuch Community, 2006

0id’s latest recording, “Systems of Mercy”, represents both the best and the worst aspects of the IDM/Ambient genres; on one hand, this group of musicians has constructed a symphonic, highly intellectual piece of music – three quarters of an hour of seamless atmospheric sonic experimentation, divided into seven tracks that, as a whole, tell a very moving story, but, taken individually, fail to deliver anything substantial. On the other hand, this album stands as testimony to how the considerable production skills of any band can easily be interpreted wrongly and seen as going to waste.
All the instrumentation has been methodically processed and painstakingly sequenced but, once finally mastered and pressed, is lacking two distinct (and highly necessary) IDM ingredients. The first is the simpler of the two to address: percussion. Minimalist composition or not, intelligent dance music relies – perhaps too heavily – on the presence of a beat: whether it be the classic 4/4 bass thud of techno, or the complicated stylings of drum ‘n bass, it is an integral part of a successful record. On Systems of Mercy, you wait… and wait… and wait a little longer for a few bars of much-needed release from the tedium of over-repetitive synthetic pad work. Unfortunately, this relief is short-lived, giving way to a gorgeously programmed, but wholly uninspiring loop of computerized vocals. This, in turn, heralds the return of the movie soundtrack pad work. This leads to the second missing piece of the puzzle: attitude. I find OID’s music too polished and clean-cut and, as a result, soulless, lacking the grit and grime and glitches I expect in my forays into the IDM and ambient world.


— David vander Merwe

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