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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Superb New Album From Holden
I liked At The Controls so much I bought myself Propellerhaed Reason and a midi control because I just wanted to create stuff like that myself. Now Holden's new album has come out and it's a cracker. It has a very organic smooth sound which ebbs and flows and continuously builds up to these gentle cresendos. I found my self getting very absorbed by it, like in a...
Published on 24 Jun 2010 by Kavy

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars Strange Sound....
I want to like James Holdens Music/ Taste, and i wanted to like this mix. I didnt like or get his 'at the controls mix' - and have loved some of Sasha's remixes of his work and some of his trance stuff that he has produced. This mix is just a strange continued bleep of a sound that has no consistency what so ever - other than it is consistently boring throughout the CD. A...
Published 20 months ago by Mr. Mark A. Bullers


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Superb New Album From Holden, 24 Jun 2010
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This review is from: Dj Kicks (Audio CD)
I liked At The Controls so much I bought myself Propellerhaed Reason and a midi control because I just wanted to create stuff like that myself. Now Holden's new album has come out and it's a cracker. It has a very organic smooth sound which ebbs and flows and continuously builds up to these gentle cresendos. I found my self getting very absorbed by it, like in a meditation state, I guess a trance mesmerised state. And when this happens the music seems to take on an immense scale filling the whole room with sound even though I might not have my amp up very loud. It is a truly beautiful album, and it just really teases my brain with all these interesting little souds, wiggles, and zaps, etc. It has a continuous beat/ rhythm all the way through and it sounds seemless with all the tracks gently blending into each other. And I love the percussion on this album which really does captivate me. There is also some gorgeous deep synth bass on a few of the tracks which is pleasing and awesome. It gets very 'alien' sounding at times too - really strange and mysterious.

I sort of put this as post techno/ dance, like Belbury Poly, which is my prefered type of music nowadays. I got fed up with techno a long time ago prefering Four Tet and Caribou because they use real instruments as well (Although Belbury Poly are purely electronic, like this album is). It seems that holden has been listening Four Tet and Caribou as well as they are featured on this album. This album might suite eveyone because it is very cerebral, and not about hard hitting techno or rock. For me it is sublime, but for it to work you need to get really drawn into it, it is not background music.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars sublime !, 19 July 2010
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This review is from: Dj Kicks (Audio CD)
This is a sublime mix by the talented Mr Holden: rich, complex, intriguing "big sound" electronica. James has the ability to put together extremely diverse tracks as though they always belonged together, and build a musical experience that is both absorbing and unique. It absorbs from the first playing, but I know it will take many more plays to fully appreciate.

I have only two complaints: one Mr Holden stubornly produces far too little music in my book. And I cannot say I am a fan of that socialist realism cover art.

I might edit this review after I have listened to the set more, but that would be only to add more accolates and encouragement to buy it. We must keep this guy in work folks, and nag him to produce more music. He is quite simply a huge talent in electronica.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fireworks in the brain!, 4 Sep 2010
By 
Koen De Paus "- DaFreak" (Antwerp, Belgium) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dj Kicks (Audio CD)
He did it again! It seems that with every release he puts out, his sound morphs into something completely different. The love of my life is the idiots are winning and I had a hard time letting go. I am ashamed to admit that at first I was a bit disappointed to find out that he was moving away from that unbelievably experimental IDM sound or whatever it was called he created with that landmark record. That however did not last long :p

Instead of making a follow up he gives us a mix compiled from very diverse artists, something completely new and different! Again it's very hard to pin this sound down and perhaps we shouldn't even try. This sounds more organic than his previous work. More fluid. Very hypnotic and at times psychedelic.

It's hard to single out individual songs simply because the entire record feels like a whole. It's mixed perfectly together and almost impossible to tell where one song ends and the other begins. There is not a single showstopper on the entire record but there is one that absolutely stands out for me and that is Holden's own remix of Mogwai - The sun smells too loud. This song is,... on youtube I tried to sum it up as "tribal feelings. back to the roots. raw. powerful. life at its peak. struggle. beautiful." but really words can not describe it.

Other highlights are Ursula Bogner with Punkte, Grackle with Disco, Eric Copeland with Auto Dimmer and Maserati with No More Sages. For me those were all new artists I had never even heard of. Caribou's Lemon Yoghurt, Legowelt's Flight of the Jupiter and Kieran Hebden+Steve Reid's Departure were artists I had heard of before but not these tracks and damn they are all great too! Holden's very hypnotic Triangle folds is also one of the best tracks on there although I prefer it on it's own. The ending is epic in an almost mystical kind of way and imo it gets muddied up a bit by the song after it coming into play. Prolly my own fault for playing it way too many times when they released it separately as a promo for this mix album. Piano Magic's intro > awesome...

Yeah I am just going to stop here. I noticed I am listing every song on the cd and hey you can just check that out on amazon itself :p As usual this is a love it or hate it experience although it does continue to grow with each repeated listening. I work at a record store and played this a few time. Some people were really interested in it and others told me to turn down the racket. Give it a shot. I like to think that if you are a science and technology loving hippy, this record is made for you!

Like others have said before me the cover is imo not really a work of art but of course that's personal, don't let that discourage you from giving this record a spin!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Strange Sound...., 4 April 2013
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This review is from: Dj Kicks (Audio CD)
I want to like James Holdens Music/ Taste, and i wanted to like this mix. I didnt like or get his 'at the controls mix' - and have loved some of Sasha's remixes of his work and some of his trance stuff that he has produced. This mix is just a strange continued bleep of a sound that has no consistency what so ever - other than it is consistently boring throughout the CD. A mate has just come round after me lending it to him and he said exactly the same. He was very excited when he seen the cover but very dissapointed when he heard it.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars mmm... good stuff, 5 Aug 2010
This review is from: Dj Kicks (Audio CD)
Just love this mix.

I have several other Holden'mixes and they never disappoint.
a must buy if you're into mental music that makes the body rock.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars doesnt live up to sleeve notes, 12 Dec 2011
This review is from: Dj Kicks (Audio CD)
bought this cd on basis of balance james holden of which disc one is excellent. first five tracks are great but it then goes off into a bit of a prog rock type dirge reminiscent of 7o's Yes. not the ground breaking stuff the the artist claims in the sleeve note in my view.
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DJ-KiCKS by James Holden
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