ANDY VAZ - Live in Tokyo CD
This disc is the latest in a spate of recent lie CDs of laptop performances, along with offerings from such North American minimalists as Sutekh and Stewart Walker. Live in Tokyo documents Dusseldorf's Background Records founder Andy Vaz playing out tracks from his Sound_Variation project. Sound_Variation is ostensibly an exercise in restraint and recycling, requiring Vaz to restrict himself to a limited set of sounds, but the conceit has always felt a little forced after all, with a computer you can make anything sound like anything, right? But the singles have held up as superlative examples of rhythmic calculation, loosely corralling intractable drum hits and unhinged squeaks into more or less coherent units; Live in Tokyo allows Vaz to take this step one further, folding his entire repertoire of tricky bits into a steady, clicky stream. Its still quite linear so far no one has managed to reproduce live the king of interleaved mix that Richie Hawtin and Algorithm accom plished with considerable post-processing on DE9: Back to The Edit and Algorithm's Composure, respectively. Even as a kind of expanded DJ set, though, it's nice to have all of Vaz's variations in one place.