Beatz By The Pound
The Invasion of Bag Cancers

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Dominik Eulberg
Flora & Fauna Remixe Teil 1 & 2
[Traum, 2005]

Domink Eulberg, besides being a talented producer, is also a geography and biology student in Germany these days, if you couldn’t tell from the title and cover of his most recent Traum full-length offering Flora & Fauna, that is. Or, as Discogs succinctly puts it: “his music and his live is linked very close with nature” (sic). All I know is that the first track on the CD version of the album translates as “the invasion of the bag cancers” (sic, I hope?). In any case, Traum further celebrates the release of his record late last year with this batch of two remix 12”’s. On the first slab, André Kraml turns in a measured reworking of “Der Purpurrote Sonnenuntergang Am Schilfumsäumten Bergsee,” in which he borrows some sounds from Ada on the way to satisfying clomp through the woods. Justin Maxwell is on the B-side remixing aforementioned bag cancers, in that imitable cut-up-by-numbers-manner. Not exactly memorable, but pleasant nonetheless.

The real action occurs on the second part of the remix 12”’s, where Remute reconfigures “Die Trottellummen Von Helgoland” into a barreling mix of Arealian distortion and pounding riffage. As it turns itself into overdrive mode halfway through, you’ll undoubtedly find yourself banging your head accordingly. Hrdvsion takes a swirling synth and jerks it around for the length of his mix of “Das Röhren Der Rotwildbrunft,” slicing it to within an inch of its life, while Adam Kroll finishes the whole thing off with an epic and stately build on his version of “Keine Nieten Bei Den Herbstzeitlosen.”

Quenge Liese / Rear Besen
[Areal, 2005]

Maybe it’s the haze of my youth, but didn’t things used to be all roses for this label each time out? Listening back to their back catalogue the past few days, I can unequivocally say: “Yes.” For every 15 minutes of Ada perfection that was being dropped two years ago, it was sandwiched by aimless Undo/Redo jawns and brilliant/crap Metope 12”’s. The latter is what we have here on Konfekt’s latest outing “Quenge Liese / Rear Besen.” “Quenge” is the near-brilliant portion of the proceedings, reveling in Oizo analog bass farts that couch hardly lighter-tinged synth melodies that threaten to steamroll everything in their path. In typical Konfekt fashion, by the end of the track, you feel vaguely violated and satisfied. Never fear, however, for the comedown you can turn the vinyl over and have a short moment of cuddling before it happens all over again. This time, though, since you’re a bit more prepared, you’ll find the returns a slight diminished.

[Areal, 2005]

For the first album of the big (read: other) three in the Areal stable, Metope’s Kobol delivers exactly what you need. There are straight bangers (“Superimbat,” “33”), Ada-styled mixtures of the sweetly melodic and industrial-tinged (“Nashville,” “M1D1”), and surprises (not surprises) (“I’m So Ready,” “Panicflute”). And if you’ve got the vinyl version, that only leaves two tracks unaccounted for. Rest assured, they’re just as good as the others. I just haven’t been able to neatly slot them into some sort of naming convention quite yet (a good thing). A step up from their widely lauded, lackluster recent compilation, Metope’s Kobol is sure to be overlooked, but doesn’t deserve to be.

Ryan Crosson
Say So
[Trapez Ltd., 2005]

Detroit’s Ryan Crosson seems to be relatively new to the scene, surfacing with the Beretta Grey people, and issuing this, his first 12” on the vaunted Trapez Ltd. Imprint. And predictably, there’s much to recommend here. Crosson doesn’t seem to favor any style over another, turning in a quality selection of our tech-house tunes that would fit seamlessly into the middle of any DJ’s set. The only complaint might be that there’s no real highlight (is that a complaint?): each track seems to be the type of thing that’ll keep the party moving easily and cause one to wonder the next day what the hell those tracks were in between the flashier moments. Look no further.

Steph Highland
Darkstar Lab
[Glanzbild, 2005]

I’ve only had the pleasure of hearing one other Glanzbild release, but I’ll be seeking the rest out on the strength of Steph Highland’s first entry into the label’s small catalogue. Like Pete Steroid, the tracks are extremely muscular electro-tinged techno that rarely does much except put filters in, around, over, and under the main synth melodies. When the drums hit this hard, though, it doesn’t need much more. Extra points for strikingly apt song titles (“Savage” and “Comics”).

By: Todd Burns
Published on: 2005-09-08
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