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Music Review

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The Shape of Drums to Come


Artist: Khompa
Label: Monotreme Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 02 September 2016

In addition to touring Europe numerous times with his instrumental power trio Stearica, sharing the stage with bands such as Girls Against Boys, Acid Mothers Temple, NoMeansNo, Dälek, Damo Suzuki and Coliseum, as well as working as a session player with several Italian acts, Davide Compagnoni has been hard at work developing his electrifying new solo project Khompa: an adventurous mix of drumming, electronics and cutting edge drum triggering technology...

Khompa is an audiovisual live act whose main elements are: a drummer, a conventional drum kit, 4 drum triggers, a laptop and a stepsequencer. Each drum controls a virtual musical instrument (synthesizers, samplers, etc.) within Ableton Live music software that, in combination with a custom stepsequencer (developed with MaxforLive app), allows Davide to perform real melodies/electronic orchestration without the use of any backing track, loops or click track. 100% live.

Khompa's The Shape of Drums to Come is an odd beast. It opens with the drum infused 'Nettle Empire' before moving onto '80s synth music 'Louder' (which reminded me of classic arcade game) and then there's ambient, chilled out tracks like 'Wrong Time Wrong Place'.

It's an interesting album, but it's the set up and the way that the music is created that makes this an album worthy of your time. So, if you're coming to The Shape of Drums to Come raw, without having seen it live, then you're missing a huge part of what makes it so impressive.

The album contains 8 instrumental tracks (34 min, 21 sec) and while this is an enjoyable album you really need to see this live to appreciate the spectacle that is Khompa.


Nick Smithson

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