Having participated with gusto on a variety of Tim Bowness-related projects and bands, most notably Darkroom and his own solo pseudonymous effort as Carbon Boy, not to mention maintaining the U.K.-based Collective website that hosts many of said acts, it only made sense that Os would get a formal chance to take a bow one day under his most well-known moniker. His ear for electronic tunes, drawing on everything from industrial and electronic body music to funky breaks and abstract disco -- and more besides -- comes through loud and clear on Compilation, so named because the majority of tracks come from a series of cassettes called Colours released in the mid-'90s. The cuts themselves all date from between 1993 and 1996 and show the influence of then-common strands of electronic exploration in ambient grooves and shuffling beats -- more Planet Dog than Warp, perhaps, but certainly not without appeal. Of the previously released songs, "Scarlet Sandwich" is likely the best, a soft wash of older synth beeps and tones over restrained blissout that fulfills its brief quite entertainingly. "Curved" is another winner, low bass tones helping to really send the song on its way into a slow-rising slice of 1994 beats. The real treat comes with two hitherto unreleased cuts, each a separate collaboration with other folks in the Bowness family tree. Os' Darkroom partner Michael Bearpark worked on "Bear Loop," a 23-minute-long track that's a varied trip through calmer and more aggressive dance styles, sounding at points like a more openly dance-focused Seefeel thanks to Bearpark's initial guitar loop. Meanwhile, Peter Chilvers takes a turn with Os on "PeterLP1," a trancy (if not trance per se) number that's beat-heavy but still feels more like something to gently zone out to more than anything else.
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AllMusic Review by Ned Raggett