Tundra (New York's Morgan Packard and Brett Cleaver) and Captain Campion's contributions to Microcosm's split 10" establish the label as an international cousin to labels like Leaf, Lo, AI, and Type - where electro-acoustic, ambient, glitch, and IDM take on emotional lives outside their terse definitions. In particular, Campion's pastoral piece brings folk and ambient together in a waterfall of sounds.
(Edward Worthy - XLR8R)
The first installment of the Macrofun 10" series seems to hint at the idea that Microcosm Music has been holding back on us these past few months. It is with this series that a wide spectrum of sounds will be revealed. Chapter One begins with Tundra, featuring Brett Cleaver (a.k.a. DJ Clever, whose Troubled Waters mix CD has been showered with critical acclaim) and Morgan Packard. "Deep Sleep" continues their excursions in left-of-center drum and bass. The hollowed out percussion sounds more like banging on woodblocks than tapping on drum machine pads. Morgan Packard returns on the flip side, teaming up with composer Phil Salathe to form Captain Campion. It's almost scary to think that "In Kind" is their first release - this is a five-star composition. Freefalling synth phrases and the acoustic breaths of bass guitar and piano add the perfect touches to this ambient breakbeat opus. The end result: ten minutes of heavenÉjust plain gorgeous. A full-length (or at least an EP) had better be in their future. Charming and childlike artwork grace the record sleeves and labels, ensuring that this series will be a collector's item at some point. Expect more pleasant surprises from Microcosm this year - it's clear that they're just getting warmed up.
(Both Sides of the Surface)
The first two volumes in the Macrofun split 10-inch series from NY-based Microcosm initiate the project in fine style. As the series is designed to showcase the label's range, the first outing makes good on that intent by pairing the drum & bass of Tundra (Morgan Packard and Brett Cleaver aka DJ Clever of Troubled Waters fame) with an epic work of ambient beauty from Captain Campion (Morgan Packard and Phil Salathe). Tundra creates a spectral ambiance of soulful sparkle in "Deep Sleep" where maze-like synth patterns etch ominous, querulous melodies alongside drum & bass beats that first simmer and then broil. The ten-minute "In Kind" unfurls meditatively with swirling shimmer eventually joined by jittery beat percolations that extend the song's sweeping panorama and deepen the song's cinematic ambiance. Though the songs couldn't be more stylistically contrasting, both impress as artful constructions.
A highly desirable split ten-inch from New York's Microcosm imprint. Tundra - aka Morgan Packard and Offshore boss DJ Clever - lay a hypnotic, circling melody line over a simple electro-tinged rhythm to sublime effect on 'Deep Sleep,' before Captain Campion - aka Morgan Packard (again) and composer Phil Salathe move away from d&b on the gorgeous Boards of Canada-esque 'In Kind.' A must-buy for fans of the dreamlike Offshore sound.
(very) rough translation from original German:
(Orson Sieverding - De:Bug)