Winterlight : Hope Dies Last [2001, n5md]
Sounds Like: Brian Eno producing and co-writing an instrumental Pink Floyd album.
n5md was founded in 2000 by Mike Cadoo [one-half of the defunct Californian industrial/electro band Gridlock]. Mike and co. consistently release a particular flavor of melodic electronic music that tends to juxtapose lush string sounds with IDM elements and textural aesthetics. Winterlight's debut definitely fits this format. Standout track would be "Awaking and Sleeping" -- there's something about finely sculpted white noise that is incredibly pleasurable to my ears -- layers of the stuff surrounds the pulled-taffy string melody that is the track's framework.
*** ** ***
¥π¥ : [wai pi wai] [2004, Hands Productions]
Sounds Like: Score to a William Gibson novel.
Came across this album at random and was pleasantly surprised. Sound-wise ¥π¥ is somewhere between Front 242 and Underworld -- spliced samples, 4/4 beats that cut to breakbeats and back again, everything a little crispy and distorted. I picture cyberpunky antics happening when I hear it.