Boomkat Product Review:
*THE RETURN OF LEGENDARY MILLE PLATEAUX / RASTER NOTON ACT .SND WITH THEIR FIRST NEW MATERIAL IN SEVEN YEARS AND JUST AFTER THEIR SUPPORT SLOT ON AUTECHRE'S LATEST TOUR. LOVINGLY ENGINEERED AND CUT AT BERLIN'S DUBPLATES AND MASTERING - STRICTLY LIMITED TO 300 COPIES FOR THE WORLD!* Sheffield's Mat Steel and Mark Fell released their first material under the SND moniker back in 1998. An anonymous 12" appeared as if from nowhere, adorned with some abstract line drawings and a smudged ink stamp that provided a telephone number and no other information. The music on offer pre-dated the entire 'clicks & cuts' movement by a good couple of years, and also side-stepped many of its eventually familiar templates. In the years that followed, much of the public obsession with Minimal Techno, the bleep reductionism of the Sahko label (and their modern day evangelists Sleeparchive, Richie Hawtin and the like) could also be intrinsically connected to the pioneering work carried out by SND during the late 90's, engineering a kind of percussive music stripped bare, leaving a disconfigured alignment of bass pulses and static clips that demanded the listener fill in the gaps. Needless to say, that first 12" fast became a highly elusive artefact, soon giving way to two more incredible releases on their own eponymous imprint, and a series of critically acclaimed albums released by Mille Plateaux . This ridiculously good new package marks their long awaited return and makes for a complex, utterly compelling journey that represents their most developed and generous material to date. The set starts with nothing bar the tense shimmer of stretched, fragile keys, and ends up trawling through various permutations of bare percussive multi-layering, jump-up beats squashed through several time signatures, Garage variations, R&B decimations fragmented into the barest components imaginable, and the kind of disregard for sonic convention that has always made these two producers so incredibly free-thinking and beyond the confines of any lazy categorisation. This is music that is both deeply experimental and percussively exhilarating, resulting in a kind of tantalising cacophony that sounds like a fantasy collaboration between Soundhack, Timbaland, Mika Vainio, Kim Rapatti, Aphex Twin, Frank Bretschneider, Ryoji Ikeda and El-B, trimmed free of any sonic excess or unnecessary fluff to produce an utterly challenging 60 minute session that without doubt will rank as one of the year's most sonically daring, oddly danceable releases. just make sure to play this as loud as your surroundings will allow. This is a STRICTLY limited pressing and sure to become a collectors item - Don't hang about...!