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In The Mix: Bureau B



„On The Outskirts Of September“ is the latest contribution by the Hamburg-based musician and Bureau B member Daniel Jahn. He has picked some of his current favorites from the label catalog.

 
 

 
 

Moebius - Falsche Ruhe
Album: Blue Moon

"Blue Moon" was released at a time when electronically created pop music was no longer perceived as exotic. It was new music, free of the ballast of the 1970s, minimalist and uncluttered. Pioneer of electronic avantgarde music Dieter Moebius, a constant "simplifier" in the Cluster/Harmonia family, made a particular virtue of this simplicity on "Blue Moon", resulting in eleven wonderfully measured miniatures, rhythmic, harmonic textures of exceptional aural transparency.
 

Wolfgang Riechmann - Wunderbar
Album: Wunderbar

The Bureau B release of Wolfgang Riechmann’s "Wunderbar" unearths an absolute gem of
German electronic music. This album, however,  is beautiful and tragic in equal measure, as Wolfgang Riechmann fell victim to a knife attack just three weeks before the LP went on sale. He was stabbed in the chest in a chance encounter with a drunk in Düsseldorf’s Altstadt, the perpetrator “letting off steam” after a dispute with the landlord of his local pub, as he later recounted in court.
 

Brockmann // Bargmann - Softarps
Album: Licht

Sounds of celestial beauty and infernal force: Brockmann // Bargmann (Ex-Camera) celebrate keys, guitars and effects. Esteemed for their improvisational audacity, hurtling forwards to a motorik beat, there is another side to the Berlin "Krautrock Guerilla" trio Camera which sees them explore landscapes of sound. This is exactly what the two founder members Franz Bargmann (guitar) and Timm Brockmann (keyboards) present to us on their purely instrumental debut album "Licht". Harmonic and melancholic, tender and tough, planar and rhythmic — yet never dull.
 

Schneider Kacirek - Electro Electronics
Album: Shadows Documents

Kenya meets Krautronics! Under the auspices of the Goethe Institute and Unesco, Stefan Schneider (To Rococo Rot, ex-Kreidler) and Sven Kacirek ("The Kenya Sessions") have spent a fair amount of time in Kenya in recent years. As they travelled the country, they recorded rare, traditional music in different locations. On "Shadows Documents" they graft their acoustically gleaned impressions of Kenya onto pure electronic templates (with analogue accents). A central role is played by the repetitive, hypnotic element which is so integral to tribal music with its complex rhythms. On "Shadows Documents" the drums mutate into a sort of synthesizer instrument, almost subliminally melting into the sound of other instruments as a virtual observer, adding a certain nuance here and there, rather than performing a more catalytic function.
 

Lloyd Cole - Ken-O
Album: 1D

In preparation for his collaboration with Hans-Joachim Roedelius two years ago ("Selected Studies Vol. 1") British singer-songwriter Lloyd Cole recorded plenty of electronic music that hasn't been released yet. "1D" is a collection of the best pieces of this "unused" music. None of the pieces involves the use of a piano keyboard or a computer, except to record it. Some modulations were executed by hand. Most were generated by programmed sequencers and logic. Each piece is a self contained electronic circuit.
 

Solyst - Catching Leafs
Album: The Steam Age

As a basis for the third album by the Düsseldorf Kreidler drummer Thomas Klein "The Steam Age", an abandoned piano served as a sound source. Tapping, scratching, scraping, plucking: working with the wooden body and steel strings led to the building blocks of a broad sonic spectrum, which Klein then brushed against the grain with his sampler. All of these alienated patterns and sequences were then invited to dance to the typical Sølyst percussion groove, merging with him to form a hypnotically driving machine-funk.
 

Jurriaan Andriessen - Ode On Solitude
Album: The Awakening Dream

Jurriaan Andriessen (1925–1996) was a Dutch composer. Although he was actually at home in classical music, he recorded three synthesizer albums in the late 1970s, the first of which, "The Awakening Dream" (1977), is an outstanding excursion into experimental ambient and minimal music. Andriessen himself, 52 years of age at the time, called it a "a trance symphony". The music is less in the tradition of his peers such as Boulez or Stockhausen and more in tune with the electronic sounds of the likes of Cluster, early Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream, in places echoing Conrad Schnitzler.
 

Esmark - Skern Å
Album: Māra I

Esmark, named after a glacier at Spitzbergen that debouches into the Ymerbay, is a collaboration between the sound architect Nikolai von Sallwitz (Taprikk Sweezee, Karachi Files) and the experimental artist Alsen Rau (Scheich in China, On+Brr). Esmark's musical setup is mainly build analog. Instruments like drum computers and synth boxes have been connected in constantly changing chains of fx and filters. Some recorded on tape and fed back into the compositions. In late 2016 in scandinavian solitude, quite a number of tracks have been recorded by Esmark and some of the work is now released as two parallel albums named Māra I / Māra II.
 

Automat - Tempelhof
Album: OstWest

From Detroit techno and hip-hop's early sampling experiments to Terre Thaemlitz, electronic music has long proven its political potential, even in instrumental form. With OstWest, Berlin-based electronic-kraut-dub trio Automat complete their LP trilogy with a deep and entrancing take on the failures of neoliberalism.


Kreidler - Destino
Album: ABC

As always with Düsseldorf's Kreidler, ABC is about the exploration of freedoms within a previously determined framework. It is a formulation of convergences, of possibilities within a procedural movement, based on a notion of democracy, with socialism in mind, where one understands that restraint is not merely a strategy of a conceptually inclined band, but that it serves to strengthen the validity, precision and majestic authority of expression.


Die Wilde Jagd - Wah Wah Wallenstein (Etienne Jaumet Remix)
Album: Morgenrot EP

Die Wilde Jagd is a joint project of Ralf Beck and Sebastian Lee Philipp, named after an ancient Germanic myth. Beck is a musician and producer from Düsseldorf. He has released several albums as part of the duo Nalin & Kane, as well as under the name Unit 4. Philipp is part of the Berlin-based electro-wave duo Noblesse Oblige. They joined forces after meeting in Düsseldorf's club Salon des Amateurs. It seems no coincidence that Düsseldorf is the duo's founding city: their music is full of subtle references to local acts, such as Kraftwerk, NEU!, DAF, Liaisons Dangereuses, Pyrolator, the Krupps and Propaganda. Using numerous analog keyboards and recording devices, and combining them with a diverse range of percussion instruments, they create their own "hunting music", which at times sounds unsettling, like swampland or a dark forest, but also urgent and pressing, like incandescent lasers or a hypnotic dance.


Camera - Morgen
Album: Radiata

Dubbed "Krautrock Guerilla", the Berlin-based trio Camera like nothing better than playing spontaneous concerts in public spaces And now, as unlikely as it may once have seemed, they recorded their debut album: from driving motorik rock to serene, epically flowing tracks by way of foreboding soundscape ridges. One can clearly hear the influence of their paragons, NEU!, Harmonia, Cluster and La Düsseldorf.

 


Texts: Bureau B
Pictures taken from the Book "Terminal" and "The Other Leipzig School"

Bureau B is an avantgarde record label, music publisher and booking agency from Hamburg,
founded in 2005 by Gunther Buskies as a sister label to Tapete Records.

 

 

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