Val Maira, David Krasemann's third full-length and second under the Dave DK moniker, proves him to be a perfect addition to Kompakt's extensive roster of sublime tech-house/pop ambient producers. The Berlin-based artist (and former resident DJ at Tresor) began crafting swirling, atmospheric minimal techno and microhouse tracks in the late '90s, refining his style through numerous singles and two full-lengths. Val Maira pushes his work even further, with layers of incidental found recordings integrated into the lush synthesizers and hypnotic beats. Tracks such as "Halma" instantly recall past Kompakt glories from the likes of DJ Koze and the Field, but there's much more attention paid to details here, with strange crunching and rustling sounds placed throughout the constantly developing tracks. "We Mix at Six" has traces of haunted vocals and even bits of Arthur Russell-like cello hidden in the mix. The album's poppiest cut, "Whitehill," features singer Piper Davis, whose vocals are constantly fed through a dizzying array of effects, combined with strange thumping and crashing sounds. The entire album is filled with one thrilling club construction after the next, equally focused on warmth, humanity, and emotional progression, as well as on exciting, energetic dance beats and forward-thinking experimental production techniques.
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AllMusic Review by Paul Simpson