The Braindance Coincidence

Various Artists

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The Braindance Coincidence Review

by Glenn Swan

A fairly comprehensive showcase for the roster of artists who defied other electronic categories to find shelter from co-founders Richard D. James and Grant Wilson-Claridge, who call the whole movement "Braindance." Over the course of 100 releases from the London-based Rephlex label, an ever-widening array of styles (and countries) were represented, from the dreamy ambient lounge of the Gentle People to the punishing drill'n'bass of Bogdan Raczynski to the dry plastic acid of the Railway Raver to the creepy R&B of Leila (who seems to have taken a strong dose of Jon Hassel before recording). For all that does get crammed onto the CD, it's a shame what ends up being left behind. If this is truly an overview of the entire catalogue, it's a shame that a couple tracks weren't devoted to the earliest of their early days from acts like Bradley Strider or Q-Chastic. These are admittedly both Richard James in disguise, but by including them the label's devotees would have more to appreciate alongside the uninitiated, since many albums represented here can be obtained through CD back-order. How about all those vinyl-only treasures that remain unearthed? This being said, Braindance Coincidence is stellar in scope, richly diverse, and a smart starting point for the curious. The compilers do an excellent job picking the one most representative track for each artist, such as U-ziq's energetic, melodic, and crunchy "Swan Vesta," Ovuca's ethereal and sputtering '"Afternoon Girl," and the electro-funk hyperactivity of Tom Jenkinson remixing himself, as Chaos A.D. does brilliant battle with Squarepusher. These are just a few treats in store, so slap some Capezio shoes on your cerebellum and congratulate yourself on the impending earful of beeps, swirls, stabs, grooves, vapors, crashes, and subsonic skull sweepers.

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