Do Not Multiply Models

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Simon Walley's second CiM full-length -- for the young Dutch label Ann Aimee -- is a combination of the previously vinyl-only Service Pack (1999) and Warm Data (2000) EPs, released respectively on Delsin and deFocus. Those who lost track of the producer's work since 2000's Reference will hear him continuing his updates of the early-to-mid-'90s U.K./Detroit techno axis, with increased emphasis on space and comforting melodies with drawn-out chords. Several tracks carry that scrambled jackfrost crunch, but the best moments often arrive on blankets of tender beats. Like the (relatively) funkier moments of Boards of Canada's Hi Scores, "Disk Three" is introduced as a potentially dire hip-hop workout (replete with problematic turntablist intrusions), but it morphs into one of Walley's craftiest hip-hop/IDM collisions, more addictive and stimulating than the average Prefuse 73 track. Fittingly enough, several of Walley's best ideas are squandered somewhat, reduced to a minute or two in duration -- the frustrated listener is left to only imagine what could've happened with more development. These points still can't truly fight the fact that Walley's making some of the finest melodic techno around right now. Although Ann Aimee wasn't the first to release these tracks, this comp confirms that it's a label to keep an eye on.

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