Dusted Reviews

V/A - Strange Flowers Vol. 1

today features
reviews charts
labels writers
info donate

Search by Artist

Sign up here to receive weekly updates from Dusted

email address

Recent Reviews

Dusted Reviews

Artist: V/A

Album: Strange Flowers Vol. 1

Label: Daisyworld

Review date: Aug. 5, 2002

Presented by the venerable ex-YMO synthesist Haruomi Hosono, this “compilation of Daisy Creatures” is a promotional introduction to the Daisyworld label, which seems to be Hosono’s imprint under the auspices of the Avex label. What we get is a broad collection of sounds, primarily electronic – as might be expected – but not entirely.

The electronica selections include Eater’s synth breakbeats, Guerilla-chang’s cool pop backed with an electro beat and old-school synth hits, and WOM’s overly-simplified electronic beats, which need something more to really fill out the sound. Takagi Masakatsu’s chopped-up rhythms and mutated piano sound is certainly worth a special mention as one of the more experimental pieces here.

In a less ‘modern’ vein, Tin Pan & Friends present an odd ditty with a simple rhythm and heavily chorused guitar strums, while World Standard’s down-home horns and oompah rhythm is an attention-getter. Then there’s Vagabond c.p.a., with a weird hobo whistling tune aided by cheesy organ.

Oddly, some of the pieces here use a more diva-singer approach, not always to good effect. Micabox toss female diva vocals over a piano-led track, while Miharu Koshi’s offering is like a tiki bar song, complete with cheap-sounding organ and all. Not one of the more impressive pieces here, I’m afraid. More successful is a weird, haunting track by L.I.D., with a rather strange vocal that will either intrigue or annoy. I personally liked it. Sketch Show’s hip-hop beats with weird chanted vocals is a nice piece as well.

Then there’s Hair Stylistics (ex-Violent Onsen Geisha), whose purposely stupid drum machine tricks degenerate into a bizarre noisescape collage – easily the least-predictable track on this sampler. Pacific 231’s piece, remixed by Hosono, suffers from too much of one thing, ticktock drums with harmonica and vibes. I can’t help but wonder if it’s the same Pacific 231 whose experiments used to grace many an underground cassette release. Doesn’t sound like it, but how many artists could there be by that name?

As a label sampler, this does its job by introducing quite a few names, and it demonstrates the label’s combined breadth with some commonality running through the songs here. Although a few artists, like World Standard and Hair Stylistics, stand out as being quite unique, the others share a strong use of synths and electronic elements, while ranging from breakbeats to sing-song pop.

By Mason Jones

Read More

View all articles by Mason Jones

Find out more about Daisyworld

©2002-2011 Dusted Magazine. All Rights Reserved.