Review: Could Go become Jonas Kopp's Red moment? It's not beyond the realms of possibility and the Argentinean producer has certainly taken inspiration from the second record in Dave Clarke's benchmark trilogy. Like Red 2, Go is all about the dramatic chord stabs that burst out of the arrangement intermittently. The only real difference to Clarke's 90s anthem is that Kopp's release has the benefit of modern production techniques, with tough off-beats, firing percussion and a repetitive vocal sample adding to the sense of drama. In a neat twist, Clarke and Mr Jones provide the remix under their Unsubscribe guise. Adding stomping beats, steely drums and a menacing dimension to the chord stabs, it's a fitting reshape of one of 2014's biggest techno tunes.
Review: Having recently graced the Zenker brothers label Illian Tape with some ambient material, Jonas Kopp returns to his more familiar floor focused approach with this release for Oscar Mulero's Warm Up label. It's the Spanish label's first 2014 drop but maintains the pace set on last year's clutch of tracks from Developer, Svreca, Go Hiyama and Mulero himself with lead cut "Westphalia" dominated by the corrugated feeling of the flanged sequence that pummels proceedings forward in cahoots with some haywire 909 hats. The accompanying mix from Mulero is more stripped down but retains the dirty feeling of Kopp's original whilst "Circinus" is sci-fi techno at its finest.
Review: As the excellent Kern series from Tresor hits its second installment via DJ Hell, so the welcome vinyl sampler drops with some rare gems lovingly reissued for a fresh set of ears. Jonas Kopp's "X" sounds as taut and deadly as ever, displaying the true meaning of minimalism across a barren soundscape, while Capracara's utterly sexy acid house jam "Flashback '86" shows just how erotic a 303 bassline can be. Old classic "Bliss" by Halogen gets a modern revamp from DJ Hell himself, creating a functional thud with ample tripped-out techno elements present in fine slithers for an elegant finish.
Review: The second split Mutable Minds release continues in the same mind-melting vein as the first instalment. Label owner Pfirter sets the tone with the distorted acid, pile-driving percussion and distorted kicks of "Anti Routine". On "Sleepwalker", newcomer Fixeer recalls the most visceral moments of early Planetary Assault Systems, as gained drums and busy layers of metallic percussion come together for an intense arrangement. Kuf & Dold's "Mint" ups the pace with a pounding rhythm track that resounds to doubled up claps, pounding 4/4s and gnarly riffs, while the most reserved contribution comes in the form of Jonas Kopp's dubbed out "Biorritmo".
Review: Oscar Mulero's Polegroup label closes the year with a mammoth compilation that defines the current state of the techno nation. As Unknown Landscapes shows, it is a diverse place. There's droning ambience from Daphne RXX, while Reeko, Reggy Van Oers and Mike Parker deliver bleep-heavy, hypnotic groove that draw on the influence of F.U.S.E and Sandwell District. Heads-down loopy fare is also catered for - with the spiky percussion and bleak filters of Jonas Koop's "Fu Factor" standing out - and the form also revisits the rough, analogue sound of the 90s thanks to Karl Bult and American scene veteran DJ Hyperactive's contributions.
Review: Oscar Mulero's other label celebrates its fifth anniversary with this mammoth compendium. For fans of the Spanish imprint's club techno there is no shortage of material to get excited about; the Lewis Fautzi remix of Exium's "Nucleoid" is a hypnotic groove par excellence, its confluence of acid and droning pulses arcing to a tantalising climax, while Christian Wunsch and Exium once again represent the tough industrial and dub-meets-noise sound of the label on "Emission Lines" and "Biolag" respectively. However, there is also a more musical, reflective side to Poelgroup's sound. In this regard, 5 Years delivers most impressively with the chilling strings of the Architectural project from Reeko as well as the Spanish producer's cinematic, break beat-led reshape of Jonas Kopp's "M31".