Pampa's second year of existence marks its entry into label adulthood with the release of (at least) two albums, a quick-and-dirty one-two punch of new long-players from Isolée and Robag Wruhme. The label's sixth twelve inch release contains edits from each, but they're odd, insular choices, odd even for a label as weird as DJ Koze's.
Isolée's "Taktell" is not ideal first-single material, a woozy and withdrawn piece of psychedelic techno. Quiet warped chords stretch themselves onion-skin thin across a dazed, slumping kick, and wonky, detuned notes seem to spill out randomly, as if Rajko Müller couldn't be bothered to write a proper melody. In some ways, it hearkens back to his much-lauded We Are Monster, that encased aesthetic of self-completing melodies and autonomous growth. "Taktell" also recalls that album's instrumental dexterity, with a phased violin sample obtrusively cutting through the track's fabric, but continues with Isolée's minimal, bass-heavy new direction, and a dishearteningly boring example at that.
The other side acts as the first taste of a new Robag Wruhme album for the label, and its cutting clarity is a palate cleanser after Isolée's misty fog. "Thora Vukk" is as exacting and transparent as any prime Robag cut: millimetres-thin kicks, clinking glass, and what sounds like slamming doors makes for an unfriendly, alienating tune that lacks any kind of core aside from its warm subs. That is, until classic Hollywood strings creep in and carpet the skeletal beat with the kind of overbearing, majestic beauty that overwhelmed his recent Kompakt mix cd. Suddenly those ear-piercingly sharpened glass sounds resonate with renewed purpose, the track tipping over into lush, sunbathed meadow territory. But of course, the trickster Wruhme pulls the carpet out from underneath and we're back in tactile, texturally uneven minimal: prime Pampa material.
Buy Various Artists - Taktell / Thora Vukk at
Tracklist: Various Artists - Taktell / Thora Vukk A Isolee - Taktell
B Robag Wruhme - Thora Vukk
Other Pampa reviews