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8/10 ReviewBot300 Staff review, 23 October 2014
Jonas Munk is a busy chap. Not only has he been releasing gorgeous drifty synth and guitar soundscapes as Manual since 2000, he's also brought out albums and soundtracks under his own name, collaborated with the likes of Ulrich Schnauss, and still finds time to perform in various bands including esteemed stoner jammers Causa Sui. On this lengthy 2CD release he's plundering the archives from the second half of his career with seven remixes, three tracks from splits and compilations, 11 previously unreleased numbers and a rework of a previously released one.
The sequencing is a little confusing, with all the remixes on the first disc interspersed by three of his own pieces. The remixes are very pleasant, with the likes of Imandra Lake and Salli Lunn getting treated with his shimmering peace vibes. The guitar twinklings of the City of Satellites remix is my highlight here. The original and mostly unreleased pieces on the second disc are more languorous still, warmly drifting along in weightless synth drones and delicate guitar details and slowly unfolding melodies.
You've probably got a good idea of what to expect from Manual now. Because of its odds-and-sods nature it's a bit piecemeal and unfocused to recommend this as a starting point for people who aren't yet familiar with his silky and soothing tones (might I suggest 'Drowned In Light' as a more cohesive starting point). That said if you're already a fan and want something to fill the hole before his next album proper, this is unlikely to disappoint.
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