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Virtual Current

 Transonic 2 - Virtual Current - PS 08/67
  Release Date: 19 December 1994
  Limitation: 1000

   Whirlpool (Slow Spiral of Clouds)      25.37
   Wheel of Heaven                        24.56

  all tracks written by Robert Musso

This is a disc to sit down and relax to. There are no quick surprises or sudden changes from moment to moment. Just press play and "kick back for a few" type of recording. The original Transonic CD was a great mixture of influences, from spacey to ethnic, while remaining unmistakably dubbed out. This time around we get 2 25-minute pieces, >Whirlpool (Slow Spiral of Clouds)< and >Wheel of Heaven<. A section of >Whirlpool< was included on the Ambient Cookbook/Fax Compilation, which might only mislead one into thinking the track is beatless. On the contrary, both songs drift in and out of beats and through nebulous tonal atmospheres. Track 1 features a pleasant repeating pattern of guitar notes which seems to imitate an MC Escher staircase , somehow defying common logic but doing so without drawing attention to itself. Also present are the cloudy waves of sound which makes the listener feel like they're swimming around in obscurity, breaking up clusters of rhythm. Both songs are solid, though if I had to pick one I'd go with >Wheel<. It starts out a little murky and mysterious for a while, almost gloomy, and then the rhythm works its way in. The guitar in this track took some warming-up time for me, but I've learned to accept and appreciate its conservative role in the song. Transonic stays minimal without sounding undernourished or sparse. Each element in a Transonic song holds enough weight so that if you were to remove that element there would be a drastic change in overall sound and structure. The elements themselves deserve attention, as sounds seem tweaked until "just right." Nothing groundshaking on this release (except the Bass), but definitely something more for fans of the first release "Downstream Illusion" and dubster/triphopper enthusiasts.

(review by no@h)

The second Transonic disc is composed of two long, slow, spacious pieces. One of the pieces is a way-slowed-down variation on one of the themes from the first disc. This is my favorite of the three. Musso's playing reminds me a lot of David Gilmour on track two, for some reason.

(review by Alan Blattberg)


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