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Artikel-Nr.: BINE CD20

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Tokyo

DE:BUG (DE)
It's very comforting that this kind of music still gets put out by a label nowadays. Marconi Union manage the balancing act between ambient and old-school, glitch-free electronica, thereby pulling an almost unimaginable warmth to the surface. And while everything is finely tuned, there are also throwing the gauntlet at those "music skippers" - for Tokyo you need time and inspiration. Very intellectual yet still open for everybody, uplifting where it fits and even perfect for a smooth dancefloor. Huge!

Kompakt (DE)
Marconi Union's music is an evocative combination of electronica and ambience. Often incorporating organic sounds from field recordings, acoustic instruments and guitars they create a distinctive sound world where beautiful melodies are offset by darker undercurrents.

Boomkat (UK)
Mancunion electronica mavens Marconi Union drop their latest album for the consistently excellent Bine label, fashioning a Japanese-themed suite of minimalist ambience that's resplendent with a hi-tech sheen. Richly immersive soundscapes are embellished with micro-beats and glitch percussion reminiscent of Frank Bretschneider's impeccable rhythmic designs on opener 'Ginza District', and the album just continues to enthrall with its hi-fi, glistening tones: 'Lost In Neon' supplies tiny rhythms like the patter of rainfall while 'Hatsunori' offers a more propulsive sound, spurred on by Monolake styled dark cityscapes and economical, well-oiled drums. Right up to the awesome filter-sweeping final piece 'Temperature Drop' this record makes for a brilliant example of atmospheric home listening, merging luscious ambient constructions with ear-catching beat designs in all the right ways. Highly Recommended.

The Sunday Times (UK)
You’ve got to admire their honesty. Richard Talbot and James Crossley — the Manchester duo who comprise Marconi Union — admit that their new album isn’t inspired by Tokyo itself. It can’t be. They’ve never been there. Rather, it is inspired by the imaginary Tokyo that they carry in their minds (as do most of us) after repeated exposure to views of the city in films, books and on television. The danger with such an approach is that you end up with music that is detached, self-referential and a bit too knowing, but Marconi Union’s ability to add human warmth to ambient music means they avoid that trap. Tracks such as the brightly pulsing Hatsunori and the rumbling Red Line 12am therefore capture that disorienting otherness we associate with movie-Tokyo, creating a sense of alienation without actually alienating the listener.

Humpty Records (DE)
Marconi Union's music is an evocative combination of electronica and ambience. Often incorporating organic sounds from field recordings, acoustic instruments and guitars they create a distinctive sound world where beautiful melodies are offset by darker undercurrents.

Vital Weekly (NL)
“We wanted to produce an album that had a hi-tech ambience, the combination of this sound with our ongoing fascination in city life, conjured up images of the Tokyo we had seen in films, books and TV. This record isn’t about creating ‘authentic’ Japanese music, or faithfully documenting the actual city which neither of us have visited. It is just us trying to capture a sense of our imaginary Tokyo”, Marconi Union writes. That is true. If I wouldn’t know this and somebody made me guess which city was depicted here, sonically, I don’t think I would have come up with Tokyo. And probably its hard to see which city then. I’d rather would think of more empty, spacious and rural parts of the world. I never heard of Marconi Union, who exist since 2003 and have had various releases since then. Like with much of the music released by Bine Music, ambience and rhythm (or rhythm and ambience, if you prefer that order) plays a big role here. Warm glitchy rhythms, processed guitars tinkling away and deep atmospheric sound textures play an all important role in the seven pieces. Utterly relaxing music, taping your feet while listening to this, while you sit back and do nothing, read book or walk through the woods while Marconi Union play on your headphones. That relaxing mood is hard to find in a city like Tokyo, well, at least not in the some of the better known parts such as Akihabara, which gave name to one of the pieces. Nice music, no surprises, ambient dance music that is well produced. (FdW)

Westzeit (DE)
M.U. themself state that with this album they wanted to draw "images of the Tokyo we had seen in films, books and TV". So, is Tokyo an acoustic city tour based on secondary literature? No, but rather the freely associated liaison of technology and tradition, of soft silence and hectic activity. Though even the latter had injected an acoustic tranquilizer since restlessness is comfortably absent on this CD. AmbientAbstractTechno and ChillOut create a friendly unity which runs risk of becoming a bit too arbitrary in (luckily very few) moments.

Normanrecords (UK)
Marconi Union are one of those acts I've always vaguely thought were good without ever really properly hearing, so it's nice to be able to sit down and take in a bit of their new one. Tokyo houses some fine laid back electronica inside its shiny digipak, veering towards the ambient end of things with subtle nods towards glitch and dub techno sounds.. Pulsing bass waves gently massage the mind while the overlaid minor key synths offer the merest hint of foreboding, bringing that essential atmospheric element to the release. I'm thinking unfamiliar city streets under artificial lights, but maybe that's the title doing its work on me. It's on Bine this one, CD only and limited to 600 for Europe.