Of all the artists on the Make Mine roster, Portal appear to take the most direct route to the listener's ears. Containing earlier sterling efforts such as the beautifully ambient 'An Open Sky' and the melancholic folk of 'Hold (2)', 'Promise' is an easy on the ear hour-long trawl through an eclectic showcase of electronics-domnated pieces. What sets the duo of Scott Sinfield and Rachel Hughes apart is they are just as adept at writing "proper" songs which boast crossover potential as they are at composing instrumentals; so much so that the 'Sun Will Rise' operates in the same sphere as forgotten underground club hit 'Spiritual High' by the Moodswings. Similarly 'Hope' is pleasing folk music, 'Always' and 'Henna' are commercially viable widescreen pop. But to speak of the music on these terms would undermine the excellent, more alternative music on offer. 'Ghost In The Sand' for example uses layering and feedback effects more commonly associated with labelmate Yellow6, or even Avrocar, whilst other influences are brought to mind by 'May To September' (Durutti Column), 'Safe' (Cocteau Twins) and 'Visions' which is a dead ringer for Cabaret Voltaire's 'Automotivation'. More importantly, Portal manage to excel in all styles they take on.