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cover art
pp • nmlk

 Pete Namlook & Jochem Paap - pp • nmlk - PW 46
  Release Date: 15 March 2004
  Limitation: 1000

   ntr t nw wrld       5.01
   cbrg n srfc        18.25
   srfc mttn          12.58
   cll t m frnd       24.37

  all tracks written by Pete Namlook and Jochem Paap

The much-awaited collaboration between Pete Namlook and Jochem Paap is here and out there all at the same time. Gone is the pastoral beauty of Paap's "Dx Snth." The landscape of pp.nmlk is cold, isolated and mechanical. The four tracks unfold with a spaced-out skin of reverb and phasers stretched across a spiky skeleton of robotic rhythms. Filtering in and out, the rhythms are the focus and they get the proper DSP rinse as they lumber across the 18 to 20 minutes per track. The overall mood is menacing. A sense of lurking dread comes across without ever being explicitly stated. Any fan of the darker moments of Selected Ambient Works II would be pleased with this collaboration. Good reference points for pp.nmlk's sound would be Richard Devine's latest work (minus the complexity and ear-splitting high frequencies), Autechre's collaboration with the Hafler Trio or Jochem Paap's first collection of ambient pieces. Critically speaking, this product is difficult to consume. Sleeping to it would creep you out of bed, getting stoned to it would spell guaranteed paranoia, and studying it academically keeps you from appreciating the slow metamorphosis each track undergoes. There are no melodies and no recognizable "synth" sounds to keep you tethered to reality. pp.nmlk is less a CD of music than it is a somewhat uncomfortable journey into the mechanical underbelly of the future. To most people, that previous sentence would be a reason not to buy pp.nmlk. For most readers of this site, including myself, a sentence like that is a most excellent invitation to listen.

(review by John Counts)


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