Various Artists - Swarm [Cold Spring - 2006]This great double disk compilation, really highlights, the high quality of material released by uk label cold spring , in the areas of dark ambient, Neo-classical,Neo-folk, industrial, noise and experimental music. One can easily say, from what’s on offer here, that they are one of the top labels,in these musical areas.
The other great thing about this compilation is its all new and unreleased stuff, which makes of interesting for those of you, who are already familiar with the label’s output. You get hold of, unreleased tracks of artist you enjoy and make new discoveries of what to hunt down next. Of the artist's I hadn’t heard before, the ones that really stuck out were: Clear Stream Temples- Division (City of Mosque); which is a great mix of eerier ambiance and industrial rhythmic heavy noise, that mixes in radio reports and a narrative voice dealing with the bombing on a Middle Eastern city. Then there's lush foreboding cinematic string work of Fredrik Klingwall’s, Come inside.The Deep dark spacey,ambient tones of Sleep facility’s- 82۫۫S 45۫E, that is akin to drifting though vast space cannons. The tuneful neo folk strumming of Von Thronstahl- Adoration, to Europa.
As for old favourites : Merzbow offers up an electroncai tinged noisescape, with his collaboration with Nordvargh, it's a track that's heavy with cold machine like tones, that will still apeal to none noise heads, due to it's quite subdued quilty. Goatvargh oozes out another superb slice of morbid, occult tinged atmosphere, heady with sinister intensions, like looking though a gateway that leads into a hellish land scape, where bodies join then rip apart with the sound of snapping flesh. Band of Pain's creepy, implied torturess tones; stain your listening space with black oily dread.
All in all well worth a look, a perfect example of how all label compilations should be. Balancing quality and variation perfectly, and of course makes a wonderful introduction to the lable.To order direct or find out more about Cold Spring go hereRoger Batty