Roland Appel brings yet another hit to Sonar Kollektiv with ‘Dark Soldier’, a brooding, weird single-sided 12” with a real disdain for the rulebook. Already blogged about by Ewan Pearson, this is a deep and psychedelic house track that deserves a lot of attention this summer.
It begins with dark, almost gothic strings, and seems to tread a path somewhere between song and track over its seven minutes. The vocals are more hippy than house, sounding a little like something out of ‘The Wicker Man’. The structure of ‘Dark Soldier’ is unconventional too: it begins with a long intro of dubbed out, sullen droning over a slow thump, the murkiness interrupted only sporadically by bursts of dramatic string stabs. Then a long jazzy break gives way to the vocal once more. But despite the weird layout, and the regal, austere feeling of this stiff piece of music, it still feels like something of a warped anthem, an early morning house music hymn.
Appel, who is a member of Truby Trio, Fauna Flash, and Voom Voom, and therefore has a better Compost Records CV than most can ever dream of, has created a hazy and original epic that throws buildup, breakdown, verse and chorus out of the window, rooting itself instead to an intense and majestic feeling entirely of its own creation. It's sure to bring even more attention to Sonar Kollektiv from those outside the label's traditional audience. A fine release.
Tracklist: Roland Appel - Dark SoldierA1 Dark Soldier