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25 Jun 12
28 Jan 13
Review: The German label delivers its most purist techno record yet with Module. The title track is a slamming, almost claustrophobic affair, lent some sense of light thanks to its surging chords. Roberto's take on "Module" serves to heighten the interplay between these elements with its dark, scuffled beats and insistent percussion prevailing over the chords, making for a jarring sound. Advanced Human explores dub techno on "Satellite State", but with a difference as the beats are pushed to the point of distortion as the reverb filters and ebbs. Finally, "Satellite Club" features loose, organic drums, but the end result is more tracky and upfront than "State".
22 Apr 13
Review: Angelo Mele will do Affin's techno credentials no harm. The title track is a tough techno affair, its heavy claps and dramatic chords underscored by a wall of hissing percussion and a dark, churning bassline. The Danilo Schneider take focuses more on a contemporary flavour, with tribal drums powering the loose groove and a sweeping filter building and building. Mele also impresses on "Room After"; deep keys and dramatic chords lend the arrangement an epic touch, but without losing any of its dance floor dynamism. Think a more melodic version of Spain's Psyk and you're close to the direction Mele is pushing in.
21 Aug 09
04 Mar 08
11 Apr 12
Review: Acids is reminiscent of an older era in German techno, when producers like Mike Ink and Thomas Heckmann reigned supreme and distorted kick drums were the order of the day. For starters, it's faster than most minimal releases, with both the title track and "Boric" clocking in at almost 130bpm. Tempos aside, it's the loose and rough acid lines, visceral claps and throbbing, distorted rhythms that really set it apart and remind the listener of a time when Sven Vath was more menacing than a Slipknot mosh pit. "Nitric", by contrast sounds almost restrained with its wired 303s cruising at close to 125bpm.
01 Apr 13
Review: This German label has won its reputation by straddling the house/techno divide, but there is no such ambiguity on Chosen 3. Focusing heavily on harder sounds, it opens with Rebekah's remix of Chris Page's "Derailleur", a steamrolling, fist-pumping affair, littered with belligerent chord stabs. Advanced Human's "Satellite Club" is in a similar vein, its dark drums and soldered iron riffs sounding similar to Jeff Mills. The Jeroen Search take on Egor Boss' "Inversion 2.2" isn't short of high-paced thrills either, and its doubled up claps and tracky rhythm provide a hard-edged basis for Boss' ghostly synths; the release highlight however is Dax J's "New Beginnings", a chord-heavy groove that throbs and filters to infinity.
02 Dec 10
15 Oct 12
Review: Affin continues its transition from house to deepest techno on Tremor. The title track revolves around a throbbing, dubby bass, ticking percussion and wave upon wave of building chords. Niereich's remix pushes the track closer to a contemporary Berlin sound, its stepping rhythms and chiming bells coming across like a mixture of Shed's Equalized project and Efdemin. Paul Boex's version is surprisingly mellow, given his background with Dynamic Reflection, and it's based on dubby beats and mellow, wispy chords. Meanwhile, Dax J does his bit to reaccquant listeners with 90s techno, and on the churning chords of "New Beginnings", he sounds like Dave Clarke at his most bombastic.
10 Nov 10
10 Oct 11
Played by: Sebastian Bayne [if? Records], Joachim Spieth (Affin), Deepchild, Juno Recommends Minimal/Tech House, Sean Danke
Review: The overall tone on this release is one of blissed out relaxation. "Immer Liebe" is a good case in point: over a head-nodding, undulating groove, Deepchild lets gentle, breath atmospherics unfold. A similar approach is audible on Brendon Moeller's versions of the title track. On his dub version (as Echologist), the rhythm is stripped back yet solid as wispy chords unfold, while on the tougher and more aptly named "Pub Tech Tool", Moeller ups the tempo and makes the groove tougher, more steadfast. Finally, Deepchld raises the intensity levels with "Gnade". Featuring the same kind of system-leveling bassline as the other tracks, it's the pace and warbling acid line that'll keep the dance floor rattling!
14 Feb 11
11 Jun 12
Review: Many producers have returned to deep house, but in the case of Dirty Culture, it sounds like they have embraced the garage sound of New York. "After" has an irresistible shuffle to it, with the robust steely drums reminiscent of Todd Edwards and the filtered chord breakdown certain to remind older listeners of the time during the late 90s when UK house and garage was a blurry, indistinct mass. "Dusty Girls" has a more contemporary flavour, as wood block drums support a searing acid line, and the remixes, by Sean Danke and Clark Davis, retain this modern day feel, with glitchy percussion and lithe, minimal rhythms prevailing.
16 May 11
29 Aug 11
17 Sep 12
Review: This Russian producer has been bubbling under for a few years, but hopefully Inversion 2 will help him to gain recognition in what is an intensely competitive scene. "2.1" is a breaking number housing eerie synths, heavy claps and bleak acidic undercurrents. By contrast, "2.2" is far more straightforward - this time the bleeps are underpinned by a tunnelling, pulsing rhythm, the mood of austerity offset somewhat by dreamy chords as the track reaches its denouement. There is no such concession on the Jeroen Search remix, with spiky, metallic claps providing the basis for a tight club groove, but Boss allows some light to shine once again on "2.3", which is anchored by a droning, Sandwell-style bass.
14 Jan 13
Review: This German label originally made its mark as a house imprint, but increasingly, it has moved into techno circles - and Chosen 2 continues down that path. Egor Boss's "Inversion 2.1" is an impressive stab at Berlin techno, its dense rhythm housing insistent bleeps, eerie synths and a screeching vocal sample. Jeroen Search's take on Ad.lib & Silvision's "Collide" ventures into industrial territories, with its razor-sharp percussion and stepping rhythm, as does Roberto's "Going Nowhere Fast", where reverberating drums unfold over heavy broken beats. Affin have also catered for the peak time audience, with Reggie van Oers's "Untitled x 2" led by a pumping groove and insistent chord stabs.
20 Feb 12
Review: Like Superpitcher, James Hunter has an unerring knack for marrying the most sensuous musical elements with gentle dance floor nous. In this instance it's a subtle woodwind progression wrapping itself around understated beats as jazzy keys plink away seductively. "Stay Between The Lines" achieves a similar effect, albeit by different means. There, dubby beats and a sassy rhythm support reflective keys, and Daniko Schneider matches these moods with a great evrson of "Heart". Like the original version, jazzy keys weave in and out of the arrangement but on this version the groove is more rolling and club-friendly. Siz Da's take is also distinctive but pushes in the opposite direction as a plaintive guitar is strummed over clipped beats.
25 Apr 11
26 Nov 12
Review: Affin continues to impress by operating at the edge of house and techno, and Kabiko is more of the same. The title track is house music at its most out there; shaking castanets and a pitched down vocal intoning phrases like 'house music' and 'here we go again' accompany woozy, druggy chords to a tripped out climax. "Doctor Says" sees Hunter come back down to earth with a drummy, slamming groove that is in line with Affin's techno leanings. However, it seems that house music is on the menu for this release and "The Clown Is Down", with its mixture of forceful bass and jazzy keys, is just right for deep house heads.
28 Oct 10
16 Jan 09
05 Mar 12
Played by: Sonarpilot (Sonarpilot Audio), S-Tek (Gynoid, Audiolabor, Berlin), Joachim Spieth (Affin), Dirk Schoenhoefer, Juno Recommends Minimal/Tech House, Sean Danke, Mattias Fridell, Siz.da
Review: Joachim Spieth shows that dub techno is an integral part of the German psyche on Sensualized. "Sensual" contains all those elements that Chain Reaction and Basic Channel pioneered - dubby beats, cavernous chords and epic basslines, but it's testament to Spieth's skills that it doesn't sound staid. The remixers also do a fine job of reshaping "Sensual". Jamal Moulay's take features harder beats and a more upfront, rolling groove, while Reggy van Oers pushes in the opposite direction, with dreamy chords unravelling over a languid groove. Best of all though is Brendon Moeller's take, where an eerie organ riff and swelling chords combine for an arrangement that's very much in the spirit of Maurizio.
04 Sep 09
29 Oct 12