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 Compilation - Compilation 1 (Sublabel) - PS 08/01
  Release Date: 23 August 1993
  Limitation: 500

   Never Mind (Pascal F.E.O.S.)
   Elephant Overload (DJ Criss and Tobias Balle-Petersen)
   Sundance (RZ-1 Mix) (Coeur Atomique)
   Lost in Motion (DJ Criss and Pascal F.E.O.S.)
   Giovenes (Bela Cox & Massimo Vivona)
   Dune (of Love) (redruM & Mark P.)
   Terasury (Dr. Atmo & Ramin)
   Modul #1 (Pascal F.E.O.S.)
   Chamber of Dreams (DJ Criss & Pascal F.E.O.S.)

The first thing that hits you when you play this CD is the fact that Pete Namlook has no part in it; I'd never consciously picked out Pete's influence in his collaborations but without his style, this album is noticeably different from the others. This is good in the sense that the tracks differ from what might be expected, but the inconsistencies between the tracks are quite noticeable.

Compilation 1 kicks off with "Never Mind", a formulaic 909/analogue thumper that (like most Fax dance produce) works for a few listens and is then usually forgotten. "Elephant Overload" is another distorted hardcore techno track; nothing outstanding. Coeur Atomique's "Sundance" on the other hand fuses a clattering breakbeat with a rave-style structure that made me want to start waving my hands in the air (like I just don't care) and I was thoroughly knackered at the time, so that's quite an achievement. Both "Lost In Motion" and "Dune (Of Love)" are pleasant but fairly run-of-the-mill trance/progressive tracks. Ambient moods are supplied courtesy of Dr. Atmo and Ramin [he of Afrotrance fame] in "Terasury", a drifting, dry, ethnic track; again, not outstanding but well, just average as are the last two tracks, both ventures into the world of trancey techno. The real gem of this Compilation is "Giovenes"; it just builds and builds from distant lush chords into a fast trancer and finally into a hard breakbeat.

Overall, this is an interesting compilation; it lacks Namlooks style but creates it's own by doing so. The majority of the tracks are just too standard and uninteresting for it ever to be an essential buy but Fax addicts will probably get their money's worth from it.

Overall: ***

(review by Simon Walley)

I don't know what the deal is with FAX - they seem intent on making their CD catalog impossible to comprehend. Yes, there is another "Compilation 1" out there, the main difference being that the artwork is 4-colour, the catalog number is PK 08/01 instead of PS 08/01, and all the songs are different! Anyway, to the music: The lead off track is actually quite nice, which surprised the hell out of me since I usually instantly reject anything over 130 BPM. Fortunately, I didn't have to doubt too much of my reality, since the following track was absolutely dire - pound pound pound, bang bang bang, a guy screaming "elephant overload" and nothing much to recommend it. YUCK. Fortunately, it was all uphill from there: "Sundance" is quite good - it has a weird funky beat and some quite strange electronics. If only it wasn't quite so fast... The next three tracks are also good - pretty tunes, almost bordering on house in some cases, with a gentle, if fast, beat.

Now we come to the weirdest - "Terasury" (that's how they spell it, honestly) is a ten minute mostly ambient spaceout with a bizarre funky rhythm towards the end. Really nice, really beautiful and completely out of place on this compilation! Still, it's definitely worth checking out.

This is one weird freaking compilation, but what the hell, it's got its moments...

(review by Jon Drukman)


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