Textura, October 2009
"In a pairing that seems as inevitable as it is natural, Down Review's From Here, For Anyone EP unites the talents of n5MD vets Tim Arndt (Near The Parenthesis) and Medard Fischer (Arc Lab). The project has been in operation since 2007, with the two first meeting online via the Toronto-based MMBP label (which issued Arc Lab's The Nineteen Floors in 2005 and Near The Parenthesis's Go Out and See a year later) and then collaborating on “Sitting in a Room” on the 2007 Near the Parenthesis album Of Soft Construction (n5MD). In simplest terms, the EP's material can be characterized as wide-screen, richly-textured electro-acoustic sound design underlaid by laid-back rhythms inflected with subtle shadings of funk and hip-hop. With its blend of chiming electric guitar textures, keyboard-generated sparkle, and crisp downtempo rhtyhms, “Anything is Everything” is as close to a textbook example of n5MD's luscious electronic style as a track could possibly get (even if the EP's released on Hiden Shoal). Commendably, Down Review opts for understated elegance, with the duo recognizing that the song's twilight ambiance is all the more effective when delivered with restraint. “Archive” whirrs and clicks with greater comparative urgency as it slinks through a dense minefield of percolating breaks, funky synthesizer punctuations, and layers of crowd babble and electro-acoustic sounds. “Always Enough” swings entrancingly until a mid-song breakdown coaxes a gentle keyboard melody to move to the forefront, which is soon joined by a distorted voice motif and machine noises as the track builds itself up again, after which the ebullient sway of “All In” glows with a paradisiacal dynamism that manages to be both subdued and epic. Perhaps the oddest thing about the release is that it's EP-length only, considering how prolific electronic producers tend to be. One expects that it's only a matter of time before a full album's worth of Down Review material sees the light of day. "
Cyclic Defrost, September 2009
"From Here, For Anyone brings together Medard Fischer and Tim Arndt and though neither have met nor spoken, they collaborate here seamlessly. Distance and impersonal connection in music construction are becoming more common and Hidden Shoal Recordings has previously ventured into this form before with City of Satellites. In the early 1990s there was a tendency to describe electronic music as “faceless”, however the warmth and heartfelt content on this recording dissolves any such critique into a strange expectation: for faces, movement and motion. This four track EP opens with variations of melodic chords soaking the upper register, and combines pristine drum and synth programming. It is quite obvious that the form is predominantly electronic, yet it has all the hallmarks of post-rock sensibility and sonic attunement. ‘Archive’ clothes itself in manipulated crowd samples before launching into a layered drum, synth and bass combination. ‘Always enough’ weaves bright tones, dub sensibility and chopped up samples in highly wrought simplicity. ‘All In’ closes the album, playing with an almost anthemic extended chord, a hybrid drum beat and chirping bright synth which builds to dominate before dissolving quickly. It is a sharp finish, but the ride is quite exhilarating."
etherREAL, October 2009
"Mêmes labels (Music Made By People puis n5MD), même appétence pour le post-rock electronisé, et déjà une première collaboration sur un titre de l’album Of Soft Construction de Near The Parenthesis : Tim Arndt (Near The Parenthesis, donc) et Medrad Fisher (Arc Lab) se devaient de transformer l’essai. C’est sous le nom de Down Review et sur Hidden Shoal Recordings (label australien habitué du post-rock) que le duo trouve le terrain idoine pour proposer son premier EP. Soit quatre titres croisant les veines que les deux États-uniens développent par ailleurs en solo : de belles lignes mélodiques aériennes comme on en trouve chez Near The Parenthesis (Anything Is Everything) et des composantes plus électroniques (rythmiques, batterie programmée, éléments plus rêches) qu’on peut croiser sur les disques d’Arc Lab. Mais au-delà de cette adjonction de talents, on remarque assez rapidement que Down Review fait sens comme duo véritable, Tim Arndt et Medrad Fisher mêlant sans difficultés leurs talents respectifs ; Always Enough en témoigne ainsi en offrant mélodies au synthé et précision de l’électronique. Quatre titres au programme de cet EP, et quatre réussites, suffisamment homogènes pour donner corps à un propos et suffisamment différentes les unes des autres pour montrer l’étendue des possibilités de leurs auteurs, dont on espère évidemment qu’ils pourront mener de front leurs doubles carrières."
Adequacy, December 2009
"Down Review is the duo of electronic producers Medard Fischer (Arc Lab) and Tim Arndt (Near The Parenthesis), and From Here, For Anyone is their debut EP that resulted from the melding of their musical ideas exchanged over the Internet. The four tracks on the EP are a dense swirl of multi-textured electronic soundscapes that develop tunefully with mellow and warm melodies, crisp rhythm blips and playful clicks and pops. The duo mix and manipulate sounds into a soothing atmosphere of instrumental electronic songs that sound like a mash-up of the lush and ethereal, late-night dreamscapes of Ulrich Schnauss with the robotic techno of Kraftwerk’s Computer World. The impressionistic compositions don’t stray too far into the nebulous atmosphere but stay grounded with gently rolling drums, dynamic rhythms, periodic waves of buoyant keyboards and bright, celestial guitar leads. The multi-layered and swirling, synthetic sound waves don’t erupt with bursting melodies, but rather come to a slow boil with an airy and dreamy ambience with enough spirited glitch-pop noodling to keep things interesting."