Moderat - Moderat
Wed 8th Jul, 2009 Music Reviewsin
The history of the supergroup Moderat began way back in 2002 when Sascha Ring AKA Apparat recorded the Auf Kosten Der Gesundheit EP on BPitch Control with Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary of Modeselektor. For their debut album, the collective rented space at the legendary Hansa Studios in Berlin in order to record the production on vintage analogue equipment. Heavy right? Let’s take a look at the result.
From the opening warm melodies of the downbeat carnival pastiche of A New Error, the piece gives everything I see a fuzzy edge as the sounds shimmer in the air. Reminiscent of Nathan Fake or Jake Fairley, the track represents everything that is good and right in the world of progressive electronic music. The poetry continues with the beautifully dampened reversed break and softly spoken but significant Apparat vocal set against a gentle organ swirl in Rusty Nails. Reflectively bouncing along, the track ebbs and flows with shining magnificence. Seamonkey changes tack with a swooping industrial tattoo as a steam engine disturbs the picturesque landscape. Claps and hats abound in this cold but interesting techno offering interspersed with cries of melodic warmth. Slow Match brings lasery swooshes and rhythmic Afro influences over the top of a bouncy futuristic bassline while 3 Minutes Of invites beautiful beatless introspection which bends into a bouncing warm cornucopia of frivolity.
The tempo has increased significantly by Nasy Silence and we are greeted with glitchy shades of metallic grey as the underlying echo of a subtle reversed breakbeat slips in and out almost unnoticed.Sick With It pits organic beats against a tweaked reggae rap; acidic and a little gothic in its twinkling organwork, it is not long before we are treated to Porc #1 and it’s counterpart Porc #2. The first is a dramatic guitar led track full of suspense and purpose but does come across as a bit of an afterthought. Its partner portrays the morning after the night before. The military drum pattern returns as indulgent cymbals frolic beside a rising melody full of light and colour. The joyful springtime atmosphere breaks bizarrely into a proper acid house synth outro and it bemuses me why this is not the last track on the album. There is still room however for No.22 to ease slowly into a heavy hip-hop pattern which breaks into a typically introspective section before Out Of Sight reprises the sound and theme of Rusty Nails and the album fades to black.
Moderat’s self-titled debut conjures images in my mind of the changing landscape of Europe brought on by the Industrial Revolution and is reflected by the deliberate choice of recording medium. Ambient rural church sounds are layered against machinery and purpose in this sublime and diverse album. An enveloping collection of moments of melody and beauty, this is an enjoyable offering from the assembly – perfect listening for sunny Sunday reflection.
Check out the tracklisting…
1. New Error
2. Rusty Nails
4. Slow Match
5. 3 Minutes Of
6. Nasty Silence
7. Sick With It
10. No. 22
11. Out of Sight