Werkschau, a collection of 17 previously unreleased tracks by artists associated with BPitch Control, is what you might call expansive. That's hardly a surprise given Ellen Allien's interest in a variety of sounds throughout her career. Americans, North and South, stand shoulder to shoulder with Europeans, and party-starting bangers roll into moody sunset basslines. Energetic warehouse vibes dissipate into terrifyingly eerie builders, and there's even broken beat oddball trance from Telefon Tel Aviv to close.
Much like Allien's DJ sets, this isn't a genre album, defined by dub this or progressive that. West Coast house, minimal techno and even smoky synthesized R&B are all present and correct on Werkschau. Take the way "Most Beautiful Kill" from AGF/Delay opens with a singular kick and echo. Soon claps, snares and snaps join with sinister whispers, creating a ghostly dubstep variation complete with sub-shaking bassline. It's later mirrored by Mark Broom, with the excellent, tough techno of "Refund."
Elsewhere there's madcap Germanic ranting all over Aerea Negrot's "Deutsche Werden." As acidic as it is electro, it's reminiscent of Tom Tom Club on a Bavarian tour. Later on we call at Europop with Tim Tim's "How We Moove"—a harmonious duet of glitchy, grandiose proportions. Keeping on a vocal note, "Aiming for Destruction" sees Dillon and Coma deliver playfully innocent lyrics, met with a kind of futurist melancholy. Fans of classic Chicago grooves could do worse than turn their ears onto to the aural caramel Kiki & Lenz cook up with "Morning Maniacs" and the "It's a new dawn" soundbite therein.
The sample has a bit of poignancy to it. What you might reasonably guess is Paul Kalkbrenner's last BPitch outing can be found here. Modeselektor, who have moved on to create their own imprint, don't show up at all. At the moment, it is a new dawn of sorts for BPitch Control. But with Allien's ever-wandering ear at the helm of the imprint, you get the sense that things are going to be just fine. Far from representing a label with no direction, Werkschau is the sound of a restless A&R that doesn't have time for trends.
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Tracklist: Various Artists - Werkschau 01. Cormac - The Present
02. Ellen Allien - The Kiss
03. We Love - Harmony Of The Spheres
04. Dillon & Coma - Aiming For Destruction
05. AGF/Delay - Most Beautiful Kill
06. TimTim - How We Moove
07. Sascha Funke - Hiddensee
08. Kiki & Lenz - Morning Maniacs
09. Zander VT - Gotta Look Up To Get Down
10. Jahcoozi - Day In Day Out
11. Mr. Statik - Sinphony feat. The Boy
12. Aerea Negrot - Deutsche Werden
13. Thomas Muller - West
14. Chaim - The Country
15. Paul Kalkbrenner - Plaetscher
16. Mark Broom - Refund
17. Telefon Tel Aviv - The Sky Is Black feat. Robin Guthrie