CD, Hands Productions, 2010
Italy has a way of doing things that no other nation ever quite manages to match… Consider the unrestrained brute force of the Ferrari Enzo; the unequalled depth of colour in Titian’s “Venus of Urbino”; the melt-in-your-mouth taste and texture of freshly prepared gnocchi; or even the raw sensuality of Monica Bellucci. None of these may be considered the finest examples in the world of automobiles, paintings, foodstuffs or womanhood, but each carries itself with such confidence and surety that others fade into the background.
I find myself in almost exactly the same situation when dealing with Typhoid’s “Simulazione Di Divinità”, available on the Hands label: better examples of drill-and-bass inspired IDM are to be found on just about any Autechre or Download release, while far more engaging atmospheres are evident on practically anything on the Aliens catalogue, and more meticulous attention to detail can be noted on any number of albums from the likes of Architect or Squarepusher. But slip “Simulazione Di Divinità” into the stereo and all these become, momentarily, a thing of the past; non-entities for just as long as it takes for the eleven gorgeously rendered items on the record to play through – just shy of an hour, to be exact. Only after this does objective analysis become a possibility again…
Even the language barrier adds appeal to this release: an English-language release called “Simulation of Divinity”, with a tracklist featuring titles like “Dark Again”, “New Expectations” and “We Do Not Know” has negligible impact compared to “Simulazione Di Divinità”, featuring “Di Nuovo Buio”, “Nuove Attese” and “Non Vi Conosco”.
Technically, I can find no fault: as with all Hands releases, every aspect of production, right through to the final mix and mastering, is carried out with clinical attention. Musically, the only negative I can identify is that the individual tracks ‘bleed’ together, making isolation of individual offerings more difficult. This homogenized sound changes suddenly on track nine, “Biscuits and Water”, which is where the album (viewed as an individual entity) ends and the remixes and collaborations begin. A bit unexpected, maybe, but not in any way unwelcome.
Perhaps it’s just that typical Italian passion shining through, that indefinable something that makes ageing men in linen suits on mopeds attractive prospects as long as they’re confined to that limited area of sub-alpine Mediterranean country, that makes Typhoid such a pleasure to listen to, perhaps it’s subliminal programming via music. I’m even willing to accept that it could be clever composition, careful production and intelligent application of rhythm. The fact remains that “Simulazione Di Divinità” is an absolutely lovely album and one I’ll revisit regularly.
— David van der Merwe