Tiefschwarz
Misch Masch
Four Music
2004
B



you gotta love a group that sidesteps the thorny issue of album oriented electronic music and, instead, throws out a two-disc set consisting of an extended mix and the group’s best remixing work. We can throw out the rock-critical apparatus and boil it down to the essentials: what’s hot? What’s not? Does it have a good beat? Can I dance to it?

The answer to that question on the first disc is yes, continually. Misch Masch starts off with Andre Kraml’s “Safari,” a track that eases the listener in with its inviting deep and spacious bass and hand-claps riding lightly atop the drum track. It soon folds into the mind-melding “Folding Space,” a 2004 classic from the inescapable Matthew Jonson. The duo subtly increases the pace and tension for the following three tracks, allowing the steam to escape in the form Max Durante & Keith Tucker’s “Digital System,” a track that mixes electro-like melodies and production to the insistent bounce of house, most clearly evoking the genre that the duo is best known for.

Think Twice’s "Itwfm" starts off slow after the relative climax of “Digital System,” but eventually signals that the second-half of the mix will be as strong as the first. This theory is borne out by the incredible run that occurs in its wake—a Tiga remix and tracks by Mylo, Kiki, and Matthew Jonson (again!) provide perhaps the record’s best run. As the mix ends and the proceedings glide closer and closer to true electro, Misch Masch manages to even sneak in a classic by Derrick May.

The second disc is composed entirely of remixes done by the group over the past few years, wherein they stake out their particular area of electro and house. Oftentimes, the result is stunning. Take, for instance, Djtal’s “Digital World,” which in the group’s hands becomes a hyper-melodic mis(c)h mas(c)h of competing bells and whistles, which finally concludes with what sounds like an Asian guitar being attended to by Derek Bailey.

It’s this combination of the physical and the mentalist that puts Tiefschwarz ahead of the curve in terms of their remixing contemporaries. Most often the track sounds normal with a straight-ahead beat and accompanying riff, but in the details are much more to consider. A rarity indeed, Tiefschwarz is a duo that no one should have any interest in creating a full-length album of their own because it’s obvious that they do exceptionally well already, deconstructing and reconstructing others.



Reviewed by: Todd Burns
Reviewed on: 2005-03-03
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