Various Artists

DIN AV - 01/04/CN/86.03

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The ink is barely dry on the encyclopedia entry for experimental electronica, yet pioneering minimalist ~scape have added a whole new axis to the graph, pushing visuals to the forward with this first release off their new label. Not that abstract video is something new. Nor is the combination of music and visuals, as anyone who has ever been to a nightclub will tell you. But while the '90s VJs were kept several paces behind their sonic counterparts, a result of slower emerging real-time graphics technologies, the blinding speed of laptop computing in the next millennium has made the pixel the next frontier. Starting with the tinkling piano noodles of Jan Jelinek, Visomat Inc transforms what might have been a waveform into flickering cityscapes while Rechenzentrum develops his own visual integration (don't say accompaniment) for his "Projektor" and "Ibm" tracks. Christian Kleine and Jutojo add the first faintly human elements, developing from film strip stutters to raindrops and eventually people sitting hillside, but Dimbiman with Jorg Franzmann deliver real life with a pop-art tour of nightlife, complete with black-clad beauties with tribal tattoos. But even more human is Pfadfinderei's clever cooking of pasta along to the music of Moderat, in a segment that goes beyond Ikea clean. Bonuses include interviews with all of the artist pairs, graciously subtitled for those not fluent in the German tongue. The interview with ~scape owner Stefan Betke (Pole) isn't so courteous, but it is cut with live footage of the dub-techno master performing with Ohio MC Fat Jon, although the intercut graphics look largely dated for such an otherwise bleeding-edge set. Three screensavers round out this adventurous yet never overwhelming DVD package.

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