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18 April 2010

Thomas Brinkmann - 'Erika/Frauke' (Ernst)

'Erika' begins as a bit of a minimal nightmare - the most rudimentary kick and click, but you're trapped inside a closet where you can distantly hear birds outside but someone in the nearby room keeps making the "error" sound on their PC. It's maddening and effective, and I wonder what LaMonte Young would make of it? This is music that has the ability to affect the body and brain in strange ways, though not in the least bit of a fun dance kinda vibe. The second part is a bit fruity, reminding me someone of a Holger Czukay bassline. There's always a nice juxtaposition between incredibly cris and synthetic sounds, and hissy, thick wooly ones. There are a few keychanges but don't blink or you'll miss 'em. It's quite a lot of gumballs and other goofyness, so it comes as a strange surprise to those expecting nothing but austere German minimalism. 'Frauke' has a hint of ethereal mist, but the synthetic bass pulse is undeniable. It builds up a combo of spastic keypushing and wailing sirens, but all mixed so low they're easy to tune out. A weird effect. The second side of 'Frauke' is even moodier - a repetitive woodpecker pulse is there but it's subsumed by the cloudy ambience. It's a slightly detuned, warped synth pad and you can't help but feel that things are melting, despite the rock-solid pulse. This has been my favourite so far.

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