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4 Voice II

 4 Voice II - PK 08/142 (also AW 049)
  Release Date: 9 November 1998
  Limitation: 1000

   The Driver                            8.28
   Old Love Dies                         9.01
   Anemra                               10.14
   Old Love Dies Hard                    9.23
   Cave of Ancient Dreams                6.38
   New York, 25th of November 2089      11.12

I can't actually recall any discussion on the list regarding this series so I thought I'd pull out my (slightly dusty) copy of the second one and do a quick reviewette! I assume that the 4 in the title is Namlook tipping his hat at 'four-on-the-floor' [ed. note: it's actually reference to a synth] but, I've not been on the floor for at least ten years now and I can still dig this release. It definitely gets stronger as you go deeper so, I'd caution not to judge too harshly when you hear The Driver which opens the disc rather unimaginatively. Old Love Dies is just plain infectious and had me tapping furiously on the steering wheel driving in to work this morning. Anemra (does PK make some of these words up?) bears more than a passing resemblance to the From Within series, the first one in particular, although there's definitely a fuller and more symphonic feel here. Perhaps not as innovative as something like Jet Chamber 3 (a real landmark release for me) track four, Old Love Dies Hard, is nevertheless an impressive beat exploration, albeit slightly dated. If you enjoyed Silence 3 then you'll definitely go for Cave Of Ancient Dreams which also sounds as if it's borrowed some chords from Life/Death on the second Silence outing, very warm. Finally there's New York, 25th of November 2089 (sorry, I don't know the significance of this, although I assume it's celluloid sci-fi) the longest and probably the strongest track on the album. Anyone who partakes of mid-80's Vangelis will notice more than the occasional similarity but, there's still enough Namlook original trademarks and nice abstracted touches to give this a resounding thumbs-up. Perhaps not sufficiently inspired or innovative (or original!) enough to bestow true 'classic' status but, I think it's already out-of-print and that's usually a good rule of thumb in my book.

(review by Paul Milligan)

This is pretty much all classic Namlook. Lush, extended pads (i.e. Ambient Comp 2) coupled with some pleasant 'four on the floor' fun... All with that underproduced, lo-fi sound that so many early Fax records have. With the exception of'New York, 25th of November 2089,' this album sounds as if it could have been released in '93. (which is not a bad thing by any means) The aforementioned track journeys a bit into abstract, hip hopland, setting it apart from the rest of the record. If you're a fan of the 'old school' Fax sound, you'll probably enjoy this album... (I certainly do)

(review by Jeffrey Smith)


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