Various Artists - Wild Life: Surfing On Soundwaves

Alchemy, November 2005

Author: pr0fane
Date: Dec 1, 2005
Views: 3057

Review by: Jannick Andersen // pr0fane

Artist: Various
Title: Wild Life: Surfing On Soundwaves - compiled by Starspine
Label: Alchemy
Format: CD (Jewelcase with standard 4-page inlay)
Released: November, 2005


4 years after the launch, the UK-based label Alchemy have already established themselves as one of the top full on labels in the world, with no less than 19 releases in their catalogue, including albums from Rinkadink, Fatali, Dark Soho, Broken Toy and Freakulizer, and a long list of compilations.

In this review I\'ll focus on their newest compilation \"Surfing On Soundwaves\", which is the 3rd compilation in the labels \"Wild Life\" series. This edition is compiled by the labels resident DJ Starspine, and contains a promising list of artists, including some of my personal favourites, as well as a few fairly new artists on the scene. Let\'s have a closer look of what\'s inside.

01. Allaby - Imaginarium [140 BPM]
The compilation kicks of in style with Allaby who in my opinion, despite getting featured on compilations from Twisted and Nano, hasn\'t fully gotten the deserved recognition among the average dancers. \"Imaginarium\" is a really impressive tune, and is certainly among my favourite full on bangers this year. Although only running at 140 BPM it\'s extremely powerful from beginning to end, with an incredible, relentless drive, in the last couple of minutes embellished with some heavenly, uplifting effects and amazing, raw leads. Pure fucking gold!

02. Rinkadink - New Phizzics [144 BPM]
One of the Alchemy-regulars, South Africas Rinkadink, is given the hard task to follow up on the strong opener, and although \"New Phizzics\" it isn\'t really on par, it\'s a pretty strong track on its own. A bit groovier than the usual full on, never falling into the standard fast rolling bassline, but relying on a cool groove, embellished by delicious choir-pads and the usual funky Rinkadink effects and strange voice-samples. Good tune, although maybe a few minutes too short.

03. Freakulizer - Two Shots [144 BPM]
Up next is Alchemys most recent signing, Freakulizer from Switzerland, who released his debut album \"The Awakening Process\" just a few weeks ago. While I found his album a bit disappointing, \"Two Shots\" is actually a quite nice - the attitude isn\'t as aggressive as most of the material on the album, and I generally found the sound deeper, more subtle and not nearly as \"plastic\" sounding. Good track.

04. Orbital Vision - Blackout [145 BPM]
\"Orbital Vision\" is a quite new act from Brazil, with a few releases on Spliff and Magma Records. This is my first encounter with their music though, and at first it seems very mediocre, but the quality increases a bit after the quite uplifting main breakdown towards the middle with bright synths and cool didgeridoo-samples. Despite some very promising elements, it never gets really outstanding overall though, and I consider it a quite standard morning track.

05. Noga - Moksha Mania (Solar System Remix) [143 BPM]
Ex Cosmic Tone member Noga\'s \"Moksha Mania\" is remixed by a new act from Israel, Solar System, who so far have been featured on releases from Midijum, Trancelucent and USTA. Another lightheaded morning tune; not as aggressive as most of the full on coming from Israel, but not really strong enough to really stand out. One of the weaker tracks on the compilation.

06. Triptych - Dreams [145 BPM]
The diverse Frenchman Charles Michaud, better known as Triptych (and part of the progressive Solead-project) is featured with \"Dreams\". Starting with a rough, bounding bassline, slowly adding more and more elements - like on his latest album, vocals play a quite dominant role here, but where it worked pretty well on the album, I found the repeated \"Dreams\" sample here slightly annoying. Fine effort overall, but not among his best productions.

07. Broken Toy - Holiday Vibes [144 BPM]
The South African Broken Toy released his self-titled debut album earlier this year on Alchemy, and here he\'s contributing with the track \"Holiday Vibes\". It starts slow with a lazy, funky groove, but really kicks in after 3 and half minute, with an extremely phat rolling bassline, cheerful arpeggiator-melodies and reverbed pianos. A marvellous, pumping day-time track.

08. Protoculture - Supernova [143 BPM]
Protoculture has been my absolute favourite full on producer for the last couple of years, consistently releasing morning music of the highest quality with melodies to die for. The intro in \"Supernova\" sounds suspiciously similar to his own remix for Silicon Sounds \"Nexus 6\", and overall this isn\'t a the most distinct of Protocultures production. But hey, his standard is pretty fucking high, and I simply can\'t get enough of his sound. Amazing, dreamy, melodic morning track.

09. Pop Stream - Snap, Crackle, Pop [146 BPM]
Last track is by Pop Stream from Israel, in my opinion one of the more promising full on artists at the moment, already with releases on labels like Organic, Com.Pact, Spun and Alchemy, as well as a sadly quite overlooked album on Spectrum. \"Snap, Crackle, Pop\" is - despite maybe being a few minutes to short - one of his better tunes, heavy on guitars (but in good taste), Raja Ram-inspired flutes, beautiful pads and joyful, teasing melodies. Great finish to the compilation.

Bottom line:

Starspine and the rest of the Alchemy crew did a great job on \"Wild Life: Surfing On Soundwaves\", with especially Allaby and Protoculture standing out with some real beauties. Ok, there are a few weaker tracks towards the middle on the CD, but none of them are downright bad, and generally the quality on this CD is much higher than the overall standard on the flooded full on market.

It\'s not groundbreaking, but if you\'re a fan of the morning full on sound coming from labels like Nano, Turbo Trance and Neurobiotic, this compilation is among the best on the market at the moment, and shouldn\'t be missed.


1(!!!), 2, 3, 7, 8 (!!), 9




Alchemy Records:

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