February 16, 2007

Hannes Teichmann - Jäger Remixe

Festplatten has dug up Teichmann’s six year old tech-house track “Jäger” for a set of new remixes, and unsurprisingly it feels a bit nostalgic. The machine-like percussion, rigid basslines, and a thoroughly neutral mood: these are definite hallmarks of minimal Germany in 2001, a far paler color than the abstract psychedelic, gothic, and avant-pop leanings of minimal 2007. But for home listening and warm-up sets, this is a solid release, with the Sascha Funke remix leading the way—its steely motifs are reminiscent of draining liquid hardening into concrete upon contact with the air.

Festplatten / FEST 34
[Michael F Gill]

November 3, 2006

Sami Koivikko - Pääjääsä

Armed with some nice electro basslines and more umlauts than you can shake a stick at, Finnish producer Sami Koivikko’s debut on Spectral Sound follows the tech-house template laid out by his Shitkatapult and Festplatten releases. The title track rolls out with some nice modulated riffs and a slightly discofied undercurrent that create a groove somewhere between playful and menacing, Italo and German. On the flip, “Dore” leaves things a bit more spacious and adds some nice effects for something a bit more edgy, while “Pientare” is a bit more traditionally minimal with a repeated analog riff and a recurring hum turning the lights down a bit before Koivikko adds the popping snare drum loop and some atmospheric pads. The hybrid works, and this sort of multilayered, style-treading release is always welcome in a DJ crate, but there’s enough going on to keep home listeners interested, too. Another winner from Spectral.

Spectral Sound / SPC-41
[Todd Hutlock]

September 22, 2006

Andi Teichmann - Refaded

Berlin’s Festplatten are back with a remix 12 inch for Andi Teichmann’s Fades CD, which doubles as one of the few exercises in recent memory that makes clinical sterility sound enticing. While none of the these three remixes [plus a skip-worthy 20 second collage called “Loops”] are club material, there is something a bit jarring and claustrophobic about layering mellifluous Joe Pernice-styled vocals over such prickly, quantized, and whitewashed productions. With ultra-dry toms and chiseled minimal acid-lines, Hannes Teichmann’s remix of “They Don’t Care” is like an anemic version of Trentemoller, while Ukraine’s Dubmastas turn in a grim, mostly beatless mix that shows off only a few ugly glitches in its freshly shined exterior. When the disjointed kick drum comes in during the latter, it could pass as an unlikely combination of The Notwist jamming with the dubstep of Burial. Ada comes up with the biggest winner here, nailing the trademark Festplatten sound of synthesized electric guitar (used so well on practically every record by Gebr. Teichmann) while adding just the slightest bit of her own squelchy basslines and lush organ pads. Everything here might be carved a bit too lucid and upfront to really sink your teeth into, but just like excessive plastic surgery and botox, it still demands a curious kind of rubbernecking attention.

Festplatten / FEST 33
[Michael F. Gill]

November 17, 2005

Andi Teichmann - Fades

Anyone want to hazard a guess as to which indie rock bands Andi Teichmann was listening to while composing his debut album? Fades is a rather pleasant outing from Teichmann and it’s also an attempt to bridge the gap between indie rock and techno. Like a lot of producers making techno today, Teichmann started his career in a punk band as a teenager. “They Don’t Care” is the first song on the record to make the combination explicit, pitting a wildly oscillating bass line against an acoustic guitar and vocals. But while the two songs that sound like a house Death Cab end up working nicely, it’s the songs that combine the compositional ideas behind rock without resorting to the use of the instruments that work the best: “Alias,” “Nicoff,” and “Aether” all shine on an album filled with moderate highlights, but nothing exceptional.

Festplatten / FEST 30/CD02
[Todd Burns]