“Product 02” reviewed by Sonomu

I wish more laptop electronica so readily betrayed its human origins as this CD, emananting warmth from the zeros and ones, however paradoxical that sounds.

This reviewer first encountered Ran Slavin in the role of remix artist on Walking in Jerusalem by Random Inc. (aka Sebastian Meissner).

His CD is the second installment in Crónica’s “Product” series (www.cronicaelectronica.org), on which the Portugese label strives to release two longer pieces per release (harkening back to the heyday of split vinyl), as well as inviting an independent artist to do the graphics – in this case, executed with élan by “Jew Boy”, or Yaron Shin who, like Slavin, hails from Tel Aviv.

Slavin´s pieces are indeed warm and human, mildly reminiscent of Fennesz. The soundscapes are alien and nostalgically inviting at once, betraying something of the rumble, whispers and small intrusions of daily life.

Though the process is the thing – abstract computer and field recordings – guitar seems to be the prime conventional musical instrument being fed into the mix, indeed ocassionally emerging to lend something almost akin to melody to a piece.

Both “Tropical Agent” and “Ears in Water” are interesting and innovative works by a performer I personally look forward to hearing much more from. Until his next solo release, the eager listener can still his or her impatience by checking out several tracks on Bizz Circuit´s (another Meissner pseudonym) Intifada Offspring.

Stephen Fruitman

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