Various – Tea for Two (Meupe)

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The concept of this compilation from Perth label Meupe is simple, it gathers together mostly previously unreleased collaborations between two artists. Certainly not a revolutionary idea, but this compilation’ quality is undeniable. The opener, from Qua and Stina is a stunner, featuring fingerpicked guitar and rousing orchestral stabs, it is somehow reminiscent of Michael Gordon’ Light is Calling. David Miller and Pablo Dali lock into a music-box led groove that sounds like some sort of kindergarten R&B, in a good way. Inchtime and the Zephyr Quartet’s “Kyoto (Autumn Leaves)’ lives up to its evocative title with piece for strings that occupies similar emotional territory to Max Richter’ Blue Notebooks . This is nicely followed by Miller and Fiam’ Dead Texan like effort. The second section of the album is a glut of laptop tomfoolery from artists like Pivot, John Chantler and Chris Coblis. Thankfully it is all pretty high quality. Lawrence English and Ben Frost provide a wonderfully hypnotic closer, it sounds like they are creating an extended drone by processing their voices to the point of unrecognisability through a laptop. It is certainly nice to see a label put out a compilation that is not just a collection of odds and sods but an inspired meeting of minds that serves as evidence of the vitality and depth of Australian electronic music.

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