Records - Rubens (3 stars)

Rubens

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Carnivalesque (Herb)

AMBIENT ELECTRONICA

It really is a terrible shame to always be likening fresh Scottish electronica to the all-conquering Soma stable, but Rubens possess that same jittery, emotive quality in spades. Christ knows how the title relates to the contents but the duo’s debut Carnivalesque opens strongly with the sublime, busy ambience of ‘Vertical Hold’ and does its best to maintain through 60 minutes of stirring synthetic melodies and twitchy rhythms. Again, in the tradition of Boards of Canada, Autechre and the aforementioned, the cumulative effect of these desk-noodling endeavours is that interest inevitably wanes. But at its best this is a work of calculated beauty.

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