Various Artists


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This budget-priced split compilation is an interesting animal in several ways; first of all, it's a little weird for two labels to collaborate on a compilation album, though there's certainly nothing wrong with that. Stranger is the fact that, although Up's profile tends toward homemade electronica and Slabco's toward indie pop and rock, both labels are represented here by a roster almost equally divided between electro (Land of the Loops, Volume All*Star, Buckminster Fuzeboard) and rock (Modest Mouse, Sick Bees, Mike Johnson). Still, there's definitely nothing wrong with a little genre diversity. So how does the album sound? About like you'd expect, with the definite edge going to the electro crowd; Buckminster Fuzeboard and Land of the Loops are the class of that clique, with "Snap Clarity" and the trippy sample-fest "France," respectively. Rockers Dark Fantastic turn in a very respectable entry entitled "My Wandering Eye," but the Concretes are a discouraging choice for lead cut and the program ends with an unbelievably lame contribution from Modest Mouse. Given the album's under ten dollar list price and the amount of great material on it, though, it's eminently recommendable.

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