Various Artists
Rephlexions

By Andy Parsons

 
In the long 12 years since their inception, Rephlex have spearheaded a revolution in electronic music – shunning fads, trends and bandwagons with the continual invention and reinvention of 'braindance', the term coined by the label to represent their unique brand of electronica.

From the beginning founders Grant Wilson-Claridge and shadowy, godfather-like Richard D James have embarked on a scenic journey encompassing the techno noisecore of Caustic Window, early work from U-Ziq, Tom Jenkinson's Squarepusher and Luke Vibert to the breakbeat mentalism of Bogdan Raczynski, the retromachinefunk of Cylob and old-school electro from DMX Krew. Though an original rave mentality perseveres – witness recent releases from Amen Andrews, The Bug and DJ Scud – the label has never been afraid to branch out, their scope constantly expanding – among the most recent excursions an amazing world music album by Angolan Victor Gama.

Remarkably Rephlexions is only Rephlex’s second compilation. As with the first collection, the superb Braindance Coincidence, the album showcases the label's regular contributors, somehow managing to successfully reconcile artists as diverse as Yee King, Cylob, DMX Krew, Bogdan Raczynski and PP Roy.

Though some of the more hardcore collectors may be disappointed by only a few unreleased gems the main attractions must be the inclusion of new material by Luke Vibert and the man AFX himself – the former a gentle but quirky journey down paths he hasn’t visited for a while, whilst the AFX mash-up sees Drukq's more manic moments blended with pulsating urgency and frantic breakbeats. In fact it might just be one of the best things he’s released in the last few years, certainly since the remix of Flow Coma.

Other highlights include more interesting chilledness from The Gentle People and Slipper with a special mention to Metel Buffalo by Global Goon which is as lovely a tune as you're likely to hear all year. With their forthcoming Logarhythm tour guaranteed to tear up dancefloors all over Britain and a roster that’s getting stronger by the month the home of Braindance is certainly thinking in the right directions.
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