Reviews

Various Artists

For the shut-ins who populate the "is vinyl dead?" message-board threads, techno/electropop superpower Kompakt celebrates its seventh anniversary with Total 7, and the two-disc comp's strongest are arguably those that have never seen release. It doesn't mean the debates are over, though. A Total 7 exclusive launches CD 1 in subtly pronounced trance, as hazy synth swells ride Kontrast's "Grey Skies to Blue" over stuttering bleeps and blunt-edge bass pulses. Justus Köhncke, one-half of Kontrast, also appears with an unreleased disco-centered drink-spiller aptly titled "Love and Dancing," because what else is there? In the "first time on digital" camp, Michael Mayer and Superpitcher pull the overt rock aura from Gui Boratto's sun-kissed "Like You" single on CD 2, but spike it with a more quickly clipping undercurrent for their Supermayer remix. In addition to "Take That," CD 2's faux guitar-scorched funk from Jürgen Paape, the exclusives are hottest here. — Dominic Umile

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Dominic Umile