Highway & Landscape

Here's something to help you through the aftermath of NYE's partying, clubbing or whatever it is you did last night.

Three compilations, selected and mixed by Jean-Yves LeLoup of RadioMentale, out through Distance (check *,*,*). Chill out music that doesn't make you flinch, as rare as that can be, deep beats and soft breaks mostly. No groundbreaking experiments here, just good, good music and a lot of chill classics.

The first one has been one of my favorite after-the-comedown albums for many years now, always accessible and calming. Also works good during daytime, on a train ride or for driving, for example. I recommend it without second thought. It focuses a lot on US and UK electronics; all-star ambient techno, dubby trip hop and deep house (with 'SueƱo Plutino' on top), a bit glossy at times, yet soothing for tired ears. It's mixed, thought transitions last for a minimum amount of time, just to keep the flow.
Vol.2 is more upbeat, signifying a turn towards that (by then established) french 'chill grooves' thing, deep house and the occasional breaks, sometimes with ethnic elements. OK, it's not music for expensive restaurants - yet not that far away from that. I consider it to be the weakest link in the series, despite its good moments.
On the same track but more interesting is Vol.3, that compiles on the first CD some good deep beats and on CD2 what they called 'cinematic' breaks (many Ninja Tune influences there). I bought it only yesterday and gave it a shot just now, so I have not formed an opinion yet. Up to now it sounds interesting and classy, especially CD1.

VA - Highway & Landscape Vol.1 (1997)
CD1. Highway
CD2. Landscape

Info here.

VA - Highway & Landscape Vol.2 (1998)
CD. Deep Beats and Chill Breaks
Info here.

VA - Highway & Landscape Vol.3 (2000)
CD1. Deep Beats
CD2. Cinematic Breaks

Info here.

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