Felix LabandDark Days Exit

Label:Compost Records – COMPOST 185-2
CD, Album, Jewelcase
Style:Future Jazz, Downtempo, Ambient


1Whistling In Tongues
FluteHeather Roth
PercussionMark Van Niekerk
2Miss Teardrop
Xylophone [Electric]Mark Van Niekerk
3Dirty Nightgown5:52
4Falling Off A Horse5:19
5Sleeping Household5:22
6Crooked Breath5:59
7Red Handed8:35
8Black Shoes
AccordionAlex Van Heerden
ClarinetJane Rademeyer
9Radio Right Now
ClarinetJane Rademeyer
10Minka (And The Notes After)
Accordion, VocalsAlex Van Heerden

Companies, etc.



Mastered @ Calyx, Berlin.
© & ℗ 2005, Compost Medien GmbH & Co. KG.
Under exclusive license from OFF BY HEART

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Barcode (Text): 6 73794 21852 6
  • Other (Scanned): 673794218526
  • Matrix / Runout: manufactured by optimal media production A523824-01
  • Mastering SID Code: ifpi L571
  • Mould SID Code: IFPI 9710
  • Label Code: LC 02518

Other Versions (5 of 9)

View All
Title (Format)LabelCat#CountryYear
Recently Edited
Dark Days Exit (CD, Album)Open RecordOpen 05South Africa2004
Recently Edited
Dark Days Exit (LP, Album)Compost RecordsCOMPOST 185-1Germany2005
Recently Edited
Dark Days Exit (CD, Album, Digipak)Compost RecordsCOMPOST 185-2Germany2005
New Submission
Dark Days Exit (CD, Album, Unofficial Release, Jewelcase)Compost Records (3)COMPOST 185-2Russia2005
Dark Days Exit (CD, Album)Open Recordopen 06South Africa2005



  • srp3c's avatar
    Felix Laband’s Dark Days Exit, his third studio electronic album, is deceptively simplistic. Layers of looped sound repeat over rhythmic drums, rattles, and pulses, swooping in and out throughout the tracks. However, the album manages to be anything but repetitive, building a slow tension through the melodies with no discernable climax. The music itself contains a tremendous amount of feeling and emotions that fluctuate throughout the album.

    Laband himself is based in Cape Town, South Africa, which he says comes through in his music through the contrasts that he believes are inherent in the South African way of life. Indeed, there is a clear duality in the music on the album. While the album tends to favor lighthearted sounds that are almost whimsical and evocative of childhood, the mood occasionally dips towards one way more sinister. Concise, snappy instrumentals layered with different whistling sounds and grating noises tie together the album, and have to the power to evoke both nostalgia and unease depending on the context and how they are used.

    The album begins with “Whistling in Tongues,” which suggests images of a nursery with the rattles and baby sounds, as well as bells that sound similar to a baby’s toys. The whistling is layered over an upbeat strumming that has a very innocent feel, until the baseline kicks in and the tone of the song changes slightly. A child’s voice is heard saying “Die tonight. I can feel it. I don’t want to die tonight,” which perfectly encapsulates the sinister edge that the entire album manages to convey using upbeat, whimsical sounds. Out of the echoes of the voice emerges the standout track of the album, “Miss Teardrops,” which layers an upbeat percussion over xylophone sounds that weave in and out of the album’s signature whistling. The short and snappy notes, occasionally wavered and echoed, are reminiscent of drops of water falling, which ties in perfectly with the title of the track. This lighthearted, upbeat approach contrasts sharply with the next song, “Dirty Nightgown,” which sounds remarkably similar to the music used in “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events.” With its reverberating base lines and eerie snares, it has a distinctly ghostly feel.

    Even one of the more subdued tracks on the album, “Sleeping Household,” has a subtle edge to it. As the name suggests, the sounds used are those commonly found in a household, such as dripping and flowing water sounds, creaks reminiscent of floorboards, and squeaking that sounds like mice. Beyond these sounds, however, the whistling in the album comes in, this time sounding similar to a theremin. “Red Handed” revisits the use of voice samples from children, with the line “I’m not sorry for anything” weaving in and out of the upbeat xylophone and haunting whistling. By the end of the album, Laband delves into full on gloom, with the almost industrial sound of “Black Shoes.” Perhaps not coincidentally, this track features the only adult voice on the album over the low tones and violin-like sounds. The album ends on a beautiful note with “Radio Right Now,” which combines the dark and light contrasts on the album to their fullest effect, creating a haunting yet gorgeous overall effect that pulls the album out of its melancholy.

    Overall, Dark Days Exit is a remarkably polished composition that creates a wide range of sensation using a very precise arsenal of sounds that complement one another throughout the entirety of the album. Although the album doesn’t try to build up to a climactic moment, the moods that it slowly builds up to stick with you and definitely make the album worth many repeat listens.


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    • Avg Rating:4.46 / 5
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