Various ‎– Encounters

Blueprint ‎– BPCOMP1
CD, Compilation


1 Oliver Ho Under 4:54
2 Outline Contact 4:23
3 Outline Encounter 7:11
4 James Ruskin Prelude 4:44
5 Outline 5 5:58
6 Oliver Ho Wonders (Unreleased Mix) 4:35
7 Outline 4 5:21
8 James Ruskin Beyond 5:56
9 Oliver Ho Tides (Unreleased Mix) 4:39
10 Oliver Ho Cosmetics 4:58
11 James Ruskin Prevention 6:54
12 James Ruskin Time And Place 7:12

Companies, etc.


"Time is the canvas upon which music is painted, between the past and the future"

Blueprint records 2000 ℗ + © All Rights Reserved
Made in England. Distributed by IDEAL

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January 10, 2010

A lovely compilation of club friendly sounds, courtesy of Blueprint's prominent heroes: James Ruskin, Richard Polson and Oliver Ho.
Each artist comes forth with four tracks, previously released on various Blueprint twelve inchers. Oliver Ho's tunes are taken from the following: Tides (Unreleased Mix) [BP015], Under and Wonders [BP009] and Cosmetics [BP006].
James Ruskin's offerings are leaked from the following: Prelude [BP010], Beyond and Prevention [BP012] and Time And Place [BPLP1], Ruskin's debut album.
Outline, a legendary collaboration between James Ruskin and the late Richard Polson is here with tracks taken from [BP004], track 4, and [BP005], track 5. Encounter is taken from [BP003], while First Contact is taken from the "First contact EP", the first ever record released by Blueprint.
As for the music itself, it is all pretty much linear, dry and crisp techno to get you moving. I have to openly admit to not really feeling Ho's contributions, with the exception of Tides, which has this irresistible clanging, high pitched beep throughout, layed over simple and fast drum rolls. Cosmetics is everything but, as it sounds and pounds along with its dirty and unpolished sound, like a real underground burner with over driven drum kicks and unidentifiable sounds atop. Unfortunately, it climbs up my nerves pretty fast, as it endures no significant changes and turns, and it is not strucutred well enough for me to go through it all too often. On the contrary, Outline pretty much nails my taste down to the very last note; 4 and 5 are taken from what are among my favorite Blueprint releases ever, and both are repetitve, loopy tracks with a heavy drive and a sudden call to join the fun on the dance floor! First Contact is awesome as well, and is a heavy nod to Mills' old classic The Extremist, due to those rapid nervous sounds and synth stabs. Encounter, my favorite Outline track here, with a hard kick and those screeching noises atop, reminds of the beloved Magneeze by Surgeon, and some tunes off "Waveform transmission vol. 2" (Workers, Life Cycle, etc).
James Ruskin doesn't let down either, with the sci-fi Time And Place, with its emphasized spaced out mood and futuristic leads, being my pick of the four. Beyond is great as well, off-beat with crystal like effects in the background as an orchestral lead gives you the rest and goes right to your heart. Prevention starts on an ambient note, with drones and undertones emerging to the surface for some ninety seconds, when it suddenly transforms into a ticking minimal number with slight tribal influences. Almost three minutes deep a hook is introduced, and Prevention underwent a true metamorphosis; from sofa session ambient to a vintage club cut. I don't like it as much as the two already mentioned Ruskin efforts, but it is nice nonetheless.
Overall, this is worth owning, and a good place to start with the Blueprint label, especially if you want a quick glimpse at the label's sound before you decide to track down the vinyls. Although some of the finest label tracks are not released here, and not all the tracks on "Encounters" meet high standards, for a compilation of previously released material, and keeping in mind the amazing Outline numbers with two other noteworthy pieces by James Ruskin, this is as good of a overview of the 1996-2000 era of Blueprint as any. Since this is the only one, to my humble knowledge, I strongly recommend picking it up, though I would definitely not make it my first and final stop with Blueprint.