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Ascoltare | Visceral Vendor (Tripel)
"Ascoltare [Italian for listen]: textural, melodic electronica", a voice decrees over an insect orchestra of digital beats. It's not wrong either. This flagship release on Tripel Records reverts back to the day when the Warp roster was manageable in size and released masterpiece after masterpiece, Plone and Plaid one week, Squarepusher and Aphex Twin the next.
This album takes two juxtaposing approaches and combines them: organic sound pieces and low-down'n'dirty electro-dance: Solemn Jets has piano motifs interspersed with street noise whereas Kitchen Promises is a tango played on a broken drum machine with accordion bass lines and sweet violins.
It's impressive how fluidly Ascoltare (aka Dave Henson) merges these styles into their unified best: Sai Reclining has thunderous beats, a cinematic fog of distorted synths and funky keyboard melodies that sprawl across the dance floor, until they fizzle into bites of distortion.
'Visceral Vendor' is textural melody pumped through a Mega-Drive.

Jonathan Falcone
March-April 2004