Robert Miles Dreamland Deconstruction 74321 39126 2 :Review

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The Independent Culture
In the early Seventies, no country in Europe lionised art-rockers such as Yes and Gentle Giant with quite as much fervour as Italy. With Robert Miles - real name Roberto Concina - that pedestrian sensibility now comes to trance music, or at least to the variant which Roberto chooses to call "Dreamhouse".

His debut album opens with thunder and rain, but proceeds in most orderly fashion, gliding down the shimmering autobahn of "Children" with cruise control on and air-conditioning set to equable. It's not that great a distance from Kraftwerk's original techno template, though there are fewer bends and not a gear-change in the journey.

Like the rest of the album, "Children" illustrates the enduring power of a simple piano progression. It's made of single notes here, rather than the urgent vamps of most Euro-house, but there is the same concentrated, minimal impact. It's all very epic, but also very soothing; Miles deliberately chose the rather sedate pace to try to help lower the number of rave-related road accidents in Italy, which were being blamed on drugs and the machine- gun pace of techno music rather than on typical Italian driving. I'd imagine many drivers find Dreamland every bit as dangerous. I certainly wouldn't like to have to stay awake at the wheel while it ran its soporific course.