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Music for Planetarium

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Album Review

Music as installation element for a specific location is nothing new, but it's always nice to discover somebody's aptitude for it. Thus Jack Dangers' Music for Planetarium, specifically commissioned for the TIT Planetarium in Budapest. While the opening "Explanation..." almost sounds like the album will begin as a full-on Meat Beat Manifesto style release, with a voice describing both alien beings and the music he's heard from the skies rolling over understated beats, this is a start for the suitably darker feeling of the whole album. That said, the feeling of Music for Planetarium isn't that of glower and gloom but of an attempt to suggest the chilled beauty of space via particular sonic signifiers — the easiest comparison would be to composers such as Thomas Köner and Mick Harris, specializing in ambience with emphasis on drone and bass. Given that each piece is named after an astronomical feature or location, the sense is of a progression through space itself; while many of the pieces sound quite similar, subtle elements or changes in each help differentiate them both on a strictly sonic level and, presumably, for the planetarium visitor as well. Such changes can be found on "Kowal's Object," where it almost sounds like large objects — or creatures — passing through the void near to the listener's location, or at the end of "Minkowski's Object," where the dark drones turn into a crumbling collapse. It's not the original soundtrack to Cosmos, say, but it is a release that in its own way parallels that spirit, this time with a specific commission at work.

Biography

Born: 1967 in Swindon, England

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Jack Dangers has become a source of inspiration — recognized and unrecognized — for many throughout the spectrum of electronica; just as Dangers himself was inspired as a young teenager by the cut up experimental electronics of Cabaret Voltaire and the techno-pop of Kraftwerk, there's little doubt that Dangers' output as the braintrust of Meat Beat Manifesto helped inspire the drum'n'bass,...
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Music for Planetarium, Jack Dangers
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