When Solomun and Adriano founded their Diynamic imprint in Hamburg five years ago, the general MO was a comfortable collision between tech and deep house, warming cold digital grooves to a toasty glow by way of strings and horns. Seemingly more intended to tug heartstrings than tickle feet, what was so impressive about Diynamic's early days was how they managed to occupy many ideals at once, without diluting any one aspect of their sound. Over time, and as their roster grew, Diynamic seemed to move away from their hallmark chamber-house into a world more preoccupied with nightlife than bedrooms. If 2008's Saturday I'm In Love was a near-perfect encapsulation of what made their initial aesthetic so interesting, the plainly titled 5 Years of Diynamic is a snapshot of their second phase, and it's just as neat and tidy—and more importantly, maybe even more vital.
Above all, Diynamic sound confident here; their music has always subsisted on a feeling of quiet dignity, but there's something about the vibrating shuffle of Uner's opening "Positive" that feels somehow both rigid and smooth, like chugging space disco squeezed of its excessive melodic adornments. The album's fine opening stretch unfolds in cinematic fashion, from the funereal but uplifting strains of DJ Phono's Dial-esque "New Year Eve" to the stripped-back boogie of Hunter/Game's "Call My Name." Many of the compilation's efforts do keep the baroque intact, underlaying the sharp frameworks with supple textures and gilded melodies—think David August's unforgettable "Hamburg Is For Lovers" from last year and you're on the right track.
That's not to say 5 Years of Diynamic is consumed by wistful nostalgia or melancholy; in fact, it features some of the imprint's most boisterous club jams yet. Label boss Solomun's "Living On" feels like the centrepiece, with a stoned dulcet pulse and detached vocal straight out of the electroclash heyday, only slowed down to a Diynamic torpor. In case it was unclear, that's a good thing. Elsewhere, relative newcomer Liem crafts an afterhours slowburner with dubstep LFOs on "Tales to Astonish," late-period-Diynamic poster boy David August builds a hedonistic reverie with "To All The Ladies," and H.O.S.H's "Return of the Air" is almost deliriously cheery, like it's going to fall off the rails by virtue of its own drunken momentum.
The compilation comes attached with a remix disc of previously released tracks, by nature less interesting than the originals but still worthy of a few spins. Highlights include FM Belfast's bombastic rework of Ost & Kjex's "Mosabique Travelplan," The Teenager's unashamedly proggy mix of Solomun's organ-drenched "Forever," and Gui Boratto's remix of Stimming & David August's "Sexy Biest," which is dizzy with a butterflies-in-the-stomach stutter.
Taken as a whole, 5 Years of Diynamic ticks every box a label anniversary compilation should: it's effortlessly easygoing work for a well-established label, shows off a sterling new-and-improved roster, and the tracks are certainly A-side quality. Even better, the profits of this one go to charity, proving the Diynamic empire is just as concerned with giving back as it is with cultivating its utterly distinct identity.
Tracklist: Various Artists - Five Years Of DiynamicCD 1
01. UNER pres. Fools - Positive
02. DJ Phono - New Year Eve
03. Hunter/Game - Call My Name
04. Adriatique - Roads
05. Thyladomid - The Way I Feel
06. David August - To All The Ladies
07. H.O.S.H. - Return Of The Air
08. Solomun - Living On
09. Liem - Tales To Astonish
10. Ost & Kjex - JagaJazzist Toccata
11. Stimming - Trombone
01. Solomun & Stimming - Feuervogel (Icke & Er Remix)
02. Stimming - Silversurfer (Casio Kids Remix)
03. Ost & Kjex - Mosambique Travelplan (FM Belfast Remix)
04. Stimming & David August - Sexy Biest (Gui Boratto Remix)
05. Solomun - Forever (The Teenagers Remix)
06. Stimming - Funkworm (Gramatik Remix)
07. David August - Music Is The Place To Be (Pool Remix)
08. Solomun - Cloud Dancer (Kraak & Smaak Remix)
09. Stimming - Funkworm (Digitalism Remix)
10. H.O.S.H. - The Valve (WhoMadeWho Remix)
11. Solomun & DJ Phono - Ice Cream & Bonus Miles (Cassius Remix)
12. Stimming - Time To Leave (Felix from Hot Chip Remix)
13. Solomun & Stimming - Feuervogel (GusGus Remix)
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