Boomkat Product Review:
Following on from the re-issued version of Monolake's classic "Interstate' album, Robert Henke delves further back into his archives and at long last offers up the hugely sought-after 'Hong Kong', re-packaged, re-compiled and re-mastered from the original recordings. Hong Kong was first released back in 1997 and brought together some mighty 12" tracks that Henke recorded together with Gerhard Behles (who was at the time part of the project) for Basic Channel's Chain Reaction label. Following a trip to Hong Kong the pair captured several hours worth of field recordings and incorporated them into the album sequence, seeping in and out of the original versions. Because it's been unavailable for so many years it's been a good while since we've heard these tracks here - and it's such a pleasure to hear them again in all their deep, widescreen glory. More sparse and less metalic than much of the material that would shape the Monolake sound in years to come, "Hong Kong' captures the late night city scape perfectly and evolves through lengthy sequences, with most of the tracks here clocking in at around or above the 10 minute mark. Of all the tracks here, 'Occam' is perhaps the most revered, with a classic Chain Reaction style dub-chord forming the spine of the track, and klangy, panning percussion providing the obligatory narcosis. The album closes with the sublime "Mass Transit Railway", built around an extended field recording made on the Hong Kong subway, with harmonious pads and layered synths making for an emotive, heady close to an exceptional album. Highly Recommended.