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Jet Chamber II - PK 08/115
Release Date: 6 May 1996
Inner Rotation 18.30
Calm Box 17.20
Outer Rotation 26.56
all tracks written by Pete Namlook & Atom Heart
I am not that impressed with JCII overall. It has some good moments, but most of them either drag on for way too long or change too quickly into something boring.
1) Inner Rotation: Some of the sounds seem somewhat Eno-esque (e.g. about 6:00-7:00). Meaty and beaty without being too crunchy. As mentioned before, a bit slow-going, but such is the nature of live-in-the-studio. [8.25] (would have been 9.5 at half its length)
2) Calm Box: Just as the name suggests. Occasional hints at percussion, but never really there. As mentioned in previous reviews, this deep-environmental structure (or lack thereof) rarely ever holds my interest. Exceptions include the last track on Psychonavigation 4. [5.00] (In this case, a 5 in my rating system means "nothing to interest me, but nothing to keep me away. Just exists.")
3) Outer Rotation: Very smooth and cool and somewhat drums-n-bassy... A few too many noise outbursts for my taste, but at about 16:00, the mood rotates with a beastly, angry trance sequence. Other smooth noises remain, though. Most of everything fades out at around 20:00, leaving room for a >very< good 7-minute atmospheric fade-out. [8.50]
Overall rating, weighted by track time: [7.46]
(review by Damon Capehart)
If you like Jet Chamber, Transonic (for it's spacey beats), BASS (for it's funky beats and weird sounds), Silver Sound 60 (for the same reason as BASS), then you'll like this one.
The first track starts off with complex techno Aphex Twin type rhythms. The introduction of analogue tweaks and whistles remind you that this is once again Jet Chamber. Lush spacey synth follows, with analogue jiggery pokery - all very well done. This track is no joke. Rather, it's a complex rhythmic "let's kick ass in space" type opening. Very nice track with nice beats. Atom Heart is prevalent, and in a seriously innovative mode (nice bass lines too). Namlook complements and completes very well, giving the whole track somewhere to go melodically. The second track completely winds things down, and is indeed the pit stop of the album. However, while Calm Box is in deep space, there isn't an overwhelming feeling of complete abstraction (like the last ten minutes of Split Wide on Jet Chamber - which I love!!!). Rather, there is a soft drone with subtle effects (spinning, whirring and tingling sounds tickling the ears at various points). Little minimal synth melodies from Namlook (reminiscent of 2350 Broadway 3's more soundtrack moments - minus all the Tetsu effects). Strange but nice! The final track starts off calmly, with a slow free-floating feel. This is quickly dissolved into a funky setup of weird Atom Heart beats in the mode of Silver Sound 60 or BASS. The beats slowly evolve and condense later into a harder, more techno rhythm. Eventually the beats slide into the background while spacey analogue hums and drones take over - Namlook is back. Bringing the whole album to a complete circle, Namlook delicately moves the dark sounds, and the listener for that matter, to deeper reaches of space. this is like Chaos Impuls / Jet Chamber or the first few quiet minutes of Give Space a Trance / Air 3. With more lush synth the track climaxes (ironically) in it's most beatless orchestral mode, building beautifully. Then the whirring bassy beat returns to join the final burst, before everything fades into oblivion.
This album (while not quite as chilled as the original) definitely does justice to the project. It has great ambient moments, and funky twists. Get this one - it's a deep-space ride worth taking! (and after 30 rides, it's still addictive.) Out of Ten:8.5
(review by eddY)
Thankfully Atom Heart gets some control of the decks this time, as this recording is an immense improvement over last year's mediocre Jet Chamber. Easily the best track on the disc, "Inner Rotation" allows Atom Heart to slather on layers of dark, bleepy, bass heavy percussion while Namlook compliments the beats with his trademark dark and spooky melody.
The music evolves and grows; an incredible piece of electronic work oozing with intelligent sequencing and slick production. Then enter "Calm Box," lengthy chillout session providing the listener with a chance to regain consciousness before the second bombardment of Atom Heart's trademark percussion in "Outer Rotation." This time the beats are harder, faster, quirkier and more spontaneous then before. In all, "Jet Chamber" is a well crafted piece of electronic music, and worthy of repeated listenings.
(review by Aaron Michelson)