Kolsch – 1977 LP – A REFLECTION


Danish producer Kolsch is one of the new breed of German techno label Kompakts artists, 1977, his first foray into the long player shows that he is more than able to sustain the quality shown so far beyond the occasional 12.
Opening track 'Goldfisch' sets the tone perfectly; crisp 4/4s are accompanied by a one note synth line that sounds almost church organesque, the slow build into the breakdown results in an outro of considered euphoria, this is kind of material is as effective being blasted out in a club or just being listened to at home.
 '1977's strength in lies what's beneath the beat. The framework of Kolschs sound is undeniably house and techno based, but the sounds he uses alongside the beat makes the album such a fascinating listen.
Babbedekkel' bases itself around a heavily sampled jazz drum solo, the warm basslines and jackin' influenced piano riffs of 'Der Alte' are taken to a more challenging place by the use of a mournful violins, still dance floor orientated but very much from the heart. When a vocal appears on the emotive trance influenced 'All That Matters', its done in such a way that you almost miss the fact that its first time a voice has appeared; it's a subtle tweak in sound that shows off the producers skill.
Trance atmospherics are evident throughout the album, not the Roquefort whiffing hands in the air kind featuring probably homophobic rappers who will suck for pop dolla (rappers plying their trade over gay nightclub derived beats, whouldathunk?), this is the kind of mellow trance from the early 90s from Dutch producers, or the legendary Superstition' label, the pure unadulterated trance where musicality came first, not the dumb shit Guetta peddles.
Thats not to say Kolsch avoids a bit of wanton dance floor stoopidness, 'Eiswinter' breaks the melodic tone of the album with a broody electro snarl featuring heavily processed Dave Gahan tinged gothy vocals and 'Lorelay' rocks just as hard and is the nearest thing here to pure techno featuring a jittery mass of rapid note splaying over each other during the breakdown; the change in vibe here shakes it up immensely.
Kolschs refusal to be penned in by the genre his music is geared towards is a massive plus, add to that his obvious skill at production, this is an album so lavishly produced that its like a box of exotic audio chocolate, a box where no Turkish delight ones are lurking to ruin it for everyone.


Chris Todd