Christian Kleine: Valis

Morr Music, 2001

This EP is another gorgeous release by Kleine, who made my top ten list last year for his similarly themed LP Beyond Repair. On Valis, the first track, “Boon,” is actually my favorite, with a lovely bassline and beats reminiscent of Boards of Canada. “H2Y” also has a BoC feel, with distant voices and playful analogue synth sounds. Unfortunately, it’s just a smidgen too repetitive. “Several” nearly suffers the same fate, but subtly changing beats keep this low-key romp enjoyable throughout. “Red Norvo” is so quiet and melancholy it almost fades into the background. Thankfully “Accent” picks up the pace with rattling snares and more deep, rich bass. Finally “Unauthorized” offers mouth-watering beats and a quiet, simple melody. This is my second-favorite track on this EP.

Valis is simply a joy to put on. This release has been in my CD player non-stop the last couple of weeks, and it grows on me more and more each time I hear it.