DJ Hidden's third full length album is such a rich and encompassing experience that a few words can't do justice to its diversity and sharpness. A seamless combination of all of Noel Wessels's projects and tastes, it takes its listeners from the calmest, most evocative ambiences to the fastest, most pounding dancefloor highs. Nobody writes a track like DJ Hidden does, and we highly doubt that anybody is going to catch up with a musician whose blasts outside his expected boundaries with such commanding force, as “Enclosed” is a lot more than a regular album. (Get this on double CD / as digital files)
Enclose: 1. to surround, close in on all sides. 2. to add something to the contents of a package. Examples: “a listener enclosed by a massive album”, “DJ Hidden enclosed many new elements in his work.
Third albums are often the most complicated to conceive, all the more if the first two are considered as genre-defining, ageless records. Six years and exactly a hundred catalog numbers after “The Later After”, four years after “The Words Below”, DJ Hidden reveals here a tour-de-force which manages to top its predecessors in scope, diversity and depth. Needless to say, this is something that many would have though impossible, considering how highly regarding they are.
There would have been no point for DJ Hidden to repeat himself. Just like the recent album by his Outside Agency project (“The Dogs Are Listening”, 2012) was everything but a longer version of this act's EPs, “Enclosed” is not a regular DJ Hidden release. Organized as a long seamless journey, it combines very short passages with longer tracks, drum'n'bass beats with cinematic atmospheres, slow introversion with extremely fast breaks.
In a way, “Enclosed” is not a DJ Hidden album, but a Noel Wessels one: parts of it come from this project's drum'n'bass focus (“Pareidolic”), parts sound close to his Semiomime album (“Enclosed”), parts carry the furious drive of The Outside Agency (“Surface Understanding”), and there are even traces of his lesser known Trilt endeavours here and there (“The Wanderer”). This is all summarized and, yes, “enclosed” in the monumental 26 minutes longer closing “Reversed Psychology” track.
One is left with extremely little to say after having listened to “Enclosed”. The production quality is orders of magnitude higher than what is usually done in this scene. The musical depth and personality is blinding. The diversity is obvious. And of course, there are enough secrets and hidden games in this album to keep the most die-hard fans busy for days.
Full of surprises and the product of an awe-inspiring experience, DJ Hidden's third album is one which will clearly stay as a milestone and which we expect will spawn many cloning attempts. For the moment, though, we can only invite you to crawl into its metal casing and let yourself be “enclosed”.
Double CD / digital
October 28th, 2013
Tracklisting: CD 1: 1. Seance I 2. Seance II 3. The Wanderer 4. Beacon I 5. Beacon II 6. Solipsism 7. Fading 8. Traces I 9. Traces II 10. Tritone 11. Pareidolic 12. Clockwise I 13. Clockwise II 14. Uncomfortable Silence I 15. Uncomfortable Silence II 16. Distant Drums 17. Cotard I 18. Cotard II 19. Onyo 20. Legend Has It 21. Surface Understanding 22. Enclosed