V/A: 25 Years of Hands 4 x CD HANDS

25yearshands

V/A: 25 Years of Hands   4 x CD HANDS

What better way to celebrate 25 years of giving your all to the scene, than this? Well, quite simply put; there isn’t.  This first edition comes in a 10” by 10” cloth-bound spine, hard book format; and is a thing of beauty and is highly collectable to boot.

48 exclusive tracks over four CD’s, providing a marathon of listening pleasure and hours of terror for your neighbours; Hands Productions has pulled out all the stops here, with an overview of just what their label has been all about for a quarter of a century.

Any self-respecting Hands fan will be familiar with most of the artists (if not all of them) on this mammoth compilation.  From the bleak dance of Geistform, the tribal ethnic sensibilities of Ah-Cama-Sotz to the tech wizardry of 5F-X, there has been some evolution of the label stylistically; which is blatantly obvious when you hear the beats of Mono No Aware and the ever crushingly brutal, Winterkälte.

Those who originally followed Hands and still do, have overseen the transformation of Germany’s best export of Industrial music, into a label where key variants have halted the potential rot.  Artists such as Talvekoidik and Phasenmensch being the finest example of acts, who experiment with mood and atmosphere; giving the roster an essential musicality.

Tatlum supply the hardcore digital beats, Cervello Elettronico provide dance-floor Industrial, whilst many acts go for all out percussive war; you catch my drift.  There are little surprises to be had on this four-disc assault, but then that’s what you want with a compilation such as this; with each band expressing themselves in the only way they know how.

I will be honest here and state that I haven’t enjoyed all of Hands’ 300 plus release output.  Sometimes there are acts that have fallen by the generic wayside for me; both in the music and production stakes. I won’t name them though, as I am sure I have mentioned them in the past (and they fail as much on this compilation).  However, the ends justify the means; and this monolithic (see what I did there) release deserves your attention, as well as the label deserving a huge round of applause for its dedication to the cause over the years.  Long may they continue and prosper; and this album is a fantastic example of why they are where they are and why they deserve rich acclaim.

9.5/10

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