Techno.andy Turner and Ed Handley Til 95 were Two Thirds of Black Dog.
Plaid are arguably Britain's most influential electronic act. Former members of Black Dog, they have been responsible for some of the most ground-breaking electronic music ever recorded. Trainer is an attempt to chronicle the pair's early 90s heyday. Comprising rare singles and unreleased tracks, it's more of an alternative history than a comprehensive "best of" compilation. Still, it does contain some of the duo's most inventive and enjoyable material. Ed Handley and Andy Turner have always worked across the dance spectrum, and Trainer fluctuates between playful electronica, chattering techno and prototype jungle. They even find space for some Latin house, blissful ambience and rave-era breakbeats. All 25 tracks are blessed with Plaid's trademark electronic melodies and deft synth touches. It's this attention to emotion, mood and melody that elevates Handley and Turner above their workmanlike peers. Trainer is a fitting tribute to their genius. --Matt Anniss
I would suggest this to anyone with some knowledge of electronica and a philologic interest in its roots. In this respect, this album is valuable at least as much as the "Warp 10+x" series.
This is a collection of Plaid's rare yet released and also previously unreleased work spanning 1989-1995 which includes material recorded as Balil, Atypic, and Tura as well. Everything from their rare Mbuki Mvuki debut is included. On the CDs is listed their "name" at the time, released/unreleased & label, and year recorded, so it is thankfully informative enough to add understanding to the listening experience.
Granted, a few tunes will no doubt sound very dated; but come on, now, some of these tracks go back as far as '89!!! It's very interesting to hear what they were coming up with back in that period of time and how their sound evolved. It was definitely a transitional period for modern music.
There are a few extra tracks I'm certain glad to own, not out of "interest" alone but truly for their listening value. This most especially includes Angry Dolphin, which I only previously owned on Nicolette's DJ Kicks. Apparently the song has a few more minutes to it than I was aware of!! So, yes, it is here in its complete form.
Scoobs in Columbia is very funny :)
I'm surprised Amazon chose the tracks they did for sampling. Don't let them discourage you - the rest gets better than those older songs.
I give it three stars because 2-star discs bear an irritation element that this collection does NOT have. Three stars is fair, I feel, because while songs like Angry Dolphin are 5-star essentials, in my opinion, others are various renditions of working songs that often didn't quite pan out. Let's be realistic here!! All diehard Plaid fans interested in the workings of the Ed & Andy would enjoy this 2CD set.