THE AMBIENT COLLECTION contains Art Of Noise songs remixed by Youth and Alex Paterson of The Orb.
Art Of Noise: Anne Dudley, J. J. Jeczalik.
Producers: Anne Dudley, J. Jeczalik, Ted Hayton.
Engineers: Andy Falconer, Ted Hayton, Pete Lorimer.
The current state of electronica owes serious props to Art Of Noise, the brainy English studio collective whose post-modern pop evolved symbiotically alongside MTV, the second wave of the New Wave, and the video revolution. AoN's sampling savvy and pop-smarts are more direct reference points for The Orb and Coldcut than any German or American crew. With the telltale echoes of AoN's production techniques now filtering back into public consciousness--via splashy automobile ads, scratchy hiphop tracks, movie scores, shampoo commercials, and television themes--it's only fitting for these forebears to finally receive some respect.
THE AMBIENT COLLECTION, compiled and remixed by Youth (Killing Joke, The Orb, System 7), is more of a tribute to Art of Noise than a straight career retrospective. Youth avoids obvious choices--no "Legs" or "Close (To The Edit)"--and emphasizes the halcyon, lounge-y side of the band, swaddling such pieces as "Opus For 4," Camilla," "Island," "Robinson Crusoe," and "Art Of Love" in the muslin textures of synthetic washes and atmospheric effects. His mix flows well, with quirkier numbers ("Ode To Don Jose," "Eye Of A Needle") and brief afterthoughts spliced in for contrast. A fine disc.
Entertainment Weekly (1/17/97, p.64) - "...Sometimes these reinterpretations render the original sources unrecognizable, but wasn't that Art Of Noise's mission in the first place?" - Rating: A-