The genre-defying ‘Spanners’ demonstrates the Black Dog’s apparent fascination with all things alien (‘Chase the Manhattan’ features samples of interviews with Roswell ‘witnesses’), ancient (the Egyptian style artwork), and in places ambient.

The album has a far richer and diverse sound than early release ‘Bytes’, beginning with the almost funk sound of ‘Aaxmus’ ranging through mid-east influences (‘Tahr’) to its ambient endings. This is certainly not techno to pack the dance floors. It is more subtle and far less ‘safe’; one of those rare albums prepared to push boundaries and take risks to achieve something altogether more exciting. Up-tempo paranoid techno-beeps are satisfyingly provided early on with tracks such as ‘Barbola Work’ and ‘Psil-Cosyin’ while the album increasingly mellows towards the latter stages arriving via the chilled breaks of ‘Pot Noddle’ and at the harp-esque ‘Chesh’.

It’s more consistent, moody and emotional than it’s predecessor “Bytes” and where that record was more Ambient-Techno, this is much more Trance-like in nature. But given my irrational dislike of trance, I found it ultimately less satisfying. It would be the trio’s last release before they went their separate ways.

The Black Dog – Barbola Work

The Black Dog – Tahr

The Black Dog – Pot Noddle

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~ by acidted on May 28, 2008.

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