Various Artists - Discover
Other The title of this compilation indicates that this is a label sampler, and the label in question is Conzoom Records, a German electropop label. In assembling the tracklist, the label has taken a risk in including a number of rare and remixed tracks, rather than taking the more obvious 'biggest hit by each band' route. Whilst this does mean the album is not fully effective at providing a truly accurate overview of the definitive sound of the label's roster, it does at least mean there's plenty here for those devoted fans who already have the essential tracks by the bands on offer here.

But enough debate about the target audience - how are the songs? The good news is, remix, rarity or otherwise, there's plenty of quality music on offer here. Carved Souls offer a pair of contrasting tracks - 'Box' is an uptempo floorfiller, combining morose vocals with a hint of dream-trance inspired piano in a manner that'll give the futurepop establishment (what little is left of it?) a run for their money, whilst 'It's Not The End' showcases the slower, more menacing side of their sound.

Those of you looking for something closer to the original spirit of synthpop need look no further that the two Vision Talk tracks, each capturing the bright, joyous and melodic spirit of whichever Vince Clarke band you happened to like the most. Sitting somewhere between these two extremes are Neuropa's two offerings. 'Fashion War' fires huge quantities of synthetic ear-candy over six minutes of one-fingered basslines. 'Das Beat Industrialle' bears a title that suggests it might be the token 'loud and nasty' track that crops up once on most modern albums in this genre, but it's actually as catchy and innocent as anything else here.

The nearest thing Conzoom have to a 'star act' are the Australian duo Parralox, with a version of 'Ancient Times' remixed by Iris (who aren't signed to Conzoom but would fit right in if they were). As it stands, it's a pixel-perfect combination of the two project's signature styles, the only downside being the lack of a second Parralox track, one in it's original form, just to highlight how good this project sounds without any outside assistance.

I do have to knock a few points off for the occasional slip-up. There's some rather trite lyrics in the two 'Ostrich' tracks, which is pity as they otherwise deliver a nice line in minimal electronic pop. That and the overly-drawn out, unsubtle 'Wildlife' by 'The Sound Of The Crowd' mark the compilations low points. But label compilations are not about wall-to-wall brilliance. They're about discovering something new to listen to. And with three new discoveries in Carved Souls, Neuropa and Vision Talk, I certainly feel better for having listened to this.
4
Brutal Resonance

Various Artists - Discover

8.0
"Great"
N/A
Electroracle
Released 2012 by Conzoom Records
The title of this compilation indicates that this is a label sampler, and the label in question is Conzoom Records, a German electropop label. In assembling the tracklist, the label has taken a risk in including a number of rare and remixed tracks, rather than taking the more obvious 'biggest hit by each band' route. Whilst this does mean the album is not fully effective at providing a truly accurate overview of the definitive sound of the label's roster, it does at least mean there's plenty here for those devoted fans who already have the essential tracks by the bands on offer here.

But enough debate about the target audience - how are the songs? The good news is, remix, rarity or otherwise, there's plenty of quality music on offer here. Carved Souls offer a pair of contrasting tracks - 'Box' is an uptempo floorfiller, combining morose vocals with a hint of dream-trance inspired piano in a manner that'll give the futurepop establishment (what little is left of it?) a run for their money, whilst 'It's Not The End' showcases the slower, more menacing side of their sound.

Those of you looking for something closer to the original spirit of synthpop need look no further that the two Vision Talk tracks, each capturing the bright, joyous and melodic spirit of whichever Vince Clarke band you happened to like the most. Sitting somewhere between these two extremes are Neuropa's two offerings. 'Fashion War' fires huge quantities of synthetic ear-candy over six minutes of one-fingered basslines. 'Das Beat Industrialle' bears a title that suggests it might be the token 'loud and nasty' track that crops up once on most modern albums in this genre, but it's actually as catchy and innocent as anything else here.

The nearest thing Conzoom have to a 'star act' are the Australian duo Parralox, with a version of 'Ancient Times' remixed by Iris (who aren't signed to Conzoom but would fit right in if they were). As it stands, it's a pixel-perfect combination of the two project's signature styles, the only downside being the lack of a second Parralox track, one in it's original form, just to highlight how good this project sounds without any outside assistance.

I do have to knock a few points off for the occasional slip-up. There's some rather trite lyrics in the two 'Ostrich' tracks, which is pity as they otherwise deliver a nice line in minimal electronic pop. That and the overly-drawn out, unsubtle 'Wildlife' by 'The Sound Of The Crowd' mark the compilations low points. But label compilations are not about wall-to-wall brilliance. They're about discovering something new to listen to. And with three new discoveries in Carved Souls, Neuropa and Vision Talk, I certainly feel better for having listened to this.
Mar 13 2012

Various Artists

Various artists is used on compilation albums. A compilation album comprises tracks which are compiled from other recordings, either previously released or unreleased.

Jonny Hall

info@brutalresonance.com
Writer and contributor on Brutal Resonance

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Conzoom Records

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Started in spring 2009, Brutal Resonance quickly grew from a Swedish based netzine into an established International zine of the highest standard.

We cover genres like Synthpop, EBM, Industrial, Dark Ambient, Neofolk, Darkwave, Noise and all their sub- and similar genres.

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