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THEMES FOR GREAT CITIES

Those forward thinking (but backwards dancing) folk at Düsseldorf’s Themes For Great Cities keep the killers coming with their second release of 2019, this time from new school synth-funk pin ups Neuzeitliche Bodenbeläge. After dropping a dope debut 7” last February, the deviant duo of multi-instrumentalists Joshua Gottmanns and Niklas Wandt chomp through the full bratwurst here, taking their time to lead us from the night before to the morning after…

Opener ‘Am Scheitelpunkt’ takes the wrong route to the right party, bounding down the backstreets and bursting into a red-lit rave up. Easy on the one, but heavy on the two, the shoulder rolling rhythm oozes NDW funk, while the buzzing electronics and echo-soaked vocals balance punk attitude with art-house poise.
Gig over, you follow the crowd into the green room to compare notes, share lines and let cupid do his thing. The breezy guitar work, rolling bass and sleazy synths move and groove you, eventually slinking into a slow jam with just a hint of G-funk. Sophisticated and smooth, ‘Meine Nöte’ works the room like a pro, leaving you loose lipped and tripped out on the nearest sofa.

‘Wovon Ich So Erschöpft Bin’ is a hit from the heart of the afterparty, distracted with details of dreams and nightmares, but desperate to shake a limb. The slow motion synths, cocaine sparkle and louche funk form a slightly wobbly groove which might be a little more drunk than it first thought. Grab a little water and keep your wits sharp, I think Roxy Music are sipping champagne with Achim Reichel on the other side of the room. Realising you’re too high for public consumption, you grab your dance partner and head off in search of horizontal mambo or hypnotic tango.

Barging through the bedroom door and rattling the headboard ‘Bettgeheimnis’ brings the nipple chaffing bass hits and Yamaha fanfares, edging us ever closer to a fist clenching climax - party til you pass out people. Sailing through the blinds on Aurora’s first bus,

‘Du(b) und. Ich’ is cosmic cod-reggae for the lover that rocks. As the psychedelic sounds swirl off into the digital domain, Neuzeitliche Bodenbeläge twist a cryptic sonnet into a romantic raga, leaving the outboard bubbling in the bongwater and the coffee on the stove.

Punk poetry, loose limbed rhythms and the sickest synth sounds around, Neuzeitliche Bodenbeläge ladies and gentlemen...

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: New TFGC alert! Niklas Wandt and Joshua Gottmanns revisit their Neuzeitliche Bodenbeläge project for a five track trip into NDW stomp, superior synth funk, daft digidub and narcotic art-pop. I've hammered this on the promo tip - "Am Scheitelpunkt" might just be my favourite TFGC release yet.

Neuzeitliche Bodenbeläge

Ich Verliebe Mich Nie

Here we have something very spezial from Dusseldorf's mighty Themes For Great Cities - the debut release for new outfit Neuzeitliche Bodenbeläge, which seems to be a collaborative project from Joshua Gottmanns and recent Growing Bin sensation Niklas Wandt. "Ich Verliebe Mich Nie" is an A-grade NDW dancer, stomping through the smog of your nearest punk club fuelled by grumpy synth bass, neon tinged keys and hushed vocals. Neat nocturnal melodies, warped fx and a snappy song structure recall the best bits of DAF, Grauzone und Der Plan, but this is fresh and forward thinking enough to offer more than a plain pastiche. Over on the flip "Pfleg' Mich" (something like 'care for me' in English) extends a warm embrace and leads us through some optimistic synth riffs and uplifting vocals while the motorik rhythm section drives the track from synth pop serenade into the more kosmische end of the NDW spectrum. As limited as it is lovely, this is every bit as essential as you'd imagine.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: TFGC can do no wrong in my book, and the Dusseldorf label join Growing Bin at the top of my most recommended releases this week. This slender 7" hosts the NDW grooves of Joshua Gottmanns and Niklas Wandt, who join the dots between the contemporary German scene and the 80's pomp of Grauzone, Za Za and Eiskalte Engel.

Lucas Croon

Schlachthof Aufnamen

    It's a double drop from Dusseldorf this week as Lucas Croon supplies the twelth release in the totally essential Themes For Great Cities catalogue. No stranger to the label after previous appearances as a member of Stabil Elite and in collaboration with Carsten Dämbkes (of run-out groove/mega mastering fame), Lucas perfectly judges the vibe here, switching between chilly kosmishce, horizontal synth voodoo and hypnotic house abstractions over three  expansive cuts. Opening cut "Urania" holds us in its icy grasp from the get go, massaging temples with structural synth work, while mechanical textures and klingklang percussion keep the blood pumping at a regulation 120bpm. Perfect for your next neo-noir adventure into a greyscale mega-city, this is the soundtrack to high-rise trains, holgraphic adverts and chrome-cast dystopias, eventually bursting through the high-polished glass and falling into an opiated nightmare. A2's "Flötenmelodie" offers a moment's respite from all that futurist gloom, finding Croon slowly tesselating a beautiful collage of pulsating sequences, organic percussion and moonlit synthleads into something almost Balearic...B-side cut "Türkischer Tee" sees a caffinated Croon shift through the gears in peak-time mode, swerving the straightforward 4/4 in favour of a polyrhythmic, afro-beat shuffle, perfectly suited to the jazzy keyboard abstractions at play above. Restless, hypnotic and entirely immersive, the track boasts a heady sound akin to Spirutal Life, Wania or vintage Feedelity though really it exists in its own weird headspace. As infectious as they come despite a whole load of melodic complexity, this should be the secret weapon in any forward thinking DJs bag. 

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    12" Info: One copy available


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