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V/A – Sonderling

V/A - Sonderling

CD, Umbruch Recordings, 2008

A curious little release, this one. Beatnology + Soundiction open up with the general formula for the proceedings; slow-oozing hip hop elements thrown together with underlying traces of dub perked up my interest from the off, important when confronting a compilation. Grab the listener immediately by the throat and take it from there.
Most of the artists here, apart from Beatnology and Hyperactiv, are mainly unknown to me, and it’s nice to see a label with a good ear for the genuinely diverse. Umbruch have had the foresight to stray from the norm and provide us something genuinely different without swaying towards what is expected of a lot of labels nowadays, never leaning on what the general consensus dictates is acceptable in musical circles.
Admittedly, a lot of these acts are not exactly going to set the world alight. Foreign language rap has never worked for me, but then it wouldn’t, as I can’t understand what half the acts are saying. However this is down to my own shortcomings in the linguistic skills department and bears nothing on the artists’ qualities themselves. I still don’t feel this works in any case on a mass scale, and there is a fair amount of it on this album. Aside from that, there is more than enough to keep me happy musically. Obscure jazz moments, trip-to-hip-to-hop glitchy electronics and fluid bass really tickle my fancy, and all in all this is the recipe that raises the debut release from this fledgling label to a respectable level.
Fans of much of the output from the Ad Noiseam stable may find something amongst these tracks to keep them happy, and I would presume this is squarely the market this release aims at.


— Tony Young

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