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Formication - Redux

Formication return with another high quality release with four loosely structured tracks of experimental electronica and mutated techno. As the title Redux implies these were borne from live performances where certain tracks from their previous releases Pieces For A Condemned Piano and Crossing The Sea By Radio took on a life on their own becoming altogether different entities. Frustratingly the Nottingham based duo, Kingsley John Buckland Ravenscroft and Alec D Bowman, supply track titles but don't offer the running order preferring the listener to listen to Redux on random. So you're going to have to go with my take on the track ordering. The opener 'The Line That Divides The Earth From The Sky' combines fluttering electronic rhythmic patterns over bubbling synths before a series of disembodied piano stabs and snatches of sung and spoken voices enter the fray. 'Rise of the Native' ranges from drifting synths casting off erratic rhythms alongside deep throbs and pulses as it teeters on the fringes of techno, before being blurred by a hellish concoction of shrieks and scrapes. This is the dark side of electronica, a sinister contrast to the pastoral sound of Boards of Canada, as heard on 'The Victim' which is carried on a wave of distant rumbling drums through a muffled electronic haze pierced by fragmented human chatter. The final piece in this musical conundrum is ' When The Patient Stars Breathe', an outgrowth from the Pieces For A Condemned Piano sessions. It unfolds to electro sequences, underpinned by solid bass throb strewn with disorientating tones and textures and bursts of alien noise. Amidst the electronic improvisations of the four lengthy tracks Formication appear to be toying with ruptured ambient electronica littering it with processed and fragmentary sounds taking it to a much darker place than they visited on earlier releases. Well worth seeking out before they go back overground. For more information go to www.theformicarium.com