Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Another fresh release coming from the Baskaru stable these days is "The Classics Album", a collaborational joint of Frans De Waard and Roel Meelkop produced under their conjunctional MeltPop moniker Wieman. As both musicians have been on our radar for ages, e.g. for their joined forces project Goem that has been regularly aired via our former "Die Nachtschwestern" radio show or - as solo artists - for productions under the name of Beequeen (Frans De Waard), responsible for the seminal Ambient / Drone 10" "The Surrough Gate", or Roel Meelkop's THU20 which e.g. has been reviewed on these pages back in 2003 with their "Live In Groningen" release on Stichting Mixer, we were quite thrilled to see them explore new paths with their conceptional approach they refer to as MeltPop which is in parts related to the "use everything"-feel of Plunderphonics but works in a more organized manner as their choice of samples is clearly defined by a contextual predetermination. In this case all samples used were taken from songs sporting classical music-tinged titles with words like "symphony", "rhapsody", "overture" etc. in them. And albeit it remains unclear whether this specific predetermination specifically influenced the sound of the five tracks to be found on "The Classics Album" it's quite remarkable how the results turn out here. From the cranky, dry and repetetive advanced dancefloor cut "With A Lat Of Verve" to the Ambient MicroHouse sickness of "The King Ist Queer" which combines organic Deep Listening loops with sterile, uberly precise drum works and trashy 8 bit bleep freestyles on Acid slowly evolving into a jazzy Static Noize Rave jam the journey continues into the tense Cold Ambient of "The Lady Es A Tramp" with its piercing loops in reverse and layered crescendos of (neo)classical origin. Talking Cold or Death Ambient here the sci-fi'esque intro of the "Mega Deconstructed Live Wish" totally fits into that drawer before, quite surprisingly, de- and reconstructed Heavy Rock loops take over, soon clanging and falling apart again whilst giving way to a nerve wrecking skipping unaligned needle exorcism. Finally the nearly 17 minutes closing tune "Do You Have ElP" depicts eternal darkness and isolationist, deep space TechIndustrial monotonicity with a foundation of solid, hollow, slow and sluggish beats, post fall out athmospheres and electronic buzzes that both are later accompanied and displaced by shrieking, scurrying alien ants gradually falling silent until only a few, ever repeating hydraulic noises guide our way through the last quarter of the track which unveils a quite surprising one minute ending playing around with a female voice after a short jaunt into full on silence. What a journey.