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Album of the Week: Sven Väth 'Coming Home'

Because the end of the night needs a soundtrack too...

Artist: Various (compiled and mixed by Sven Väth)
Album: Coming Home
Label: Stereo Deluxe
Released: 27/06/14

Sven Väth is without a doubt one of the busiest DJs this summer. With a weekly residency at Amnesia for Cocoon, his label's Monday night party and countless appearances all over Europe at both clubs and festivals it's a rarity that the German techno-aficionado is at home for prolonged amounts of time. So it's intriguing to learn what a DJ who spends vast periods of time in clubs all over the world listens to when the opportunity comes to relax in his own four walls.

‘Coming Home' is a series of compilations that has so far brought the likes of Nightmares on Wax and DJ Hell's ‘downtime' collection, among others - now comes the turn of Sven Väth to showcase to his fans what he listens to in his spare time.

The opener is a beatless piece of brilliance by Norweigan trumpet player Arve Henriksen entitled Poverty and its Opposite. Henriksen is renowned for the flute-like sound he produces on the trumpet and this track is no exception to the inspired and unique sound he is famed for.

The album then takes a distinctly eerie turn with Horror Inc.'s Crépuscule, which contains a surreal piano riff and some very experimental strings towards the end. Usually I'm not a great fan of distinctly experimental music, but Crépuscule flowed beautifully into Recondite's Leafs, my favourite track from the compilation that I can quite honestly say blew me away. One of the few tracks on the album with a steady, follow-able beat; Leafs is taken from Recondite's second LP entitled ‘Hinterland' that came out in November, and is a testament to the German producer's ability to send you on a journey, even without being in the crowd for one of his astonishing live shows.

Since most of the tracks on the compilation involve little-to-no percussion or steady beat, listening to the album from beginning to end is a floaty experience broken up by bold contrasts in the form of Boards of Canada's laid back but percussion-heavy Cold Earth and Portable's Making Holes (just you wait for this kick!). This is one of those albums that evokes plenty of emotion with each track. Axel Boman's Fantastic Piano is exactly what it says it is: an ambient, relaxed piece with a piano riff that's just total bliss – by far the most uplifting track on the album and a completely refreshing inclusion considering the darker, moodier pieces that precede it.

The title ‘Coming Home' encapsulates what this compilation is all about. This isn't an album of tracks that you'd expect Sven to play at Cocoon nights, nor is it the kind of music you'd expect to hear at a pre-party before a night out. This is one for when the night is over and you're back at your place winding down for the evening. A perfect mix of ambience, emotion and instrumental wizardry; this is certainly going to be the soundtrack to my journeys home from clubs this season. If you're big on electronic music but struggling to find something to chill to, look no further.


Tracklist:

01. Arve Henriksen – Poverty and its oppsite
02. Horror Inc. – Crépuscule
03. Leafs – Recondite
04. Boards Of Canada – Cold Earth
05. Axel Boman - Fantastic Piano
06. Oneohtrix Point Never – Americans
07. Holden – Some Respite
08. Portable – Making Holes
09. Popnoname – Anna
10. CocoRosie - Tears For Animals
11. Ursprung – Lizzy
12. Donni Sò – La Pagliarella (Ulrich Schnauss Remix)
13. Food – Becalmed
14. Nils Frahm – Says


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