This double album celebrates the 20th anniversary and second decade of Berlin-based Manikin label with 2x 70 minutes of brandnew and unreleased electronic music. Of course, the usual suspects Broekhuis, Keller, Schönwälder are featured in various formations, next to affliated musicians such as Raughi Ebert, Thomas Kagermann, Thomas Fanger and Rainbow Serpent.
And what a joy it is to listen to this versatile and well-tempered collection of 19 instrumental tracks, tapping into the heritage of the Berliner School and beyond. There are also some surprises, such as a completely re-recorded and alterered live version of the TD-track “Sungate” on the first disc, performed by Ralph Wadephul and friends in 2011.
When you’re looking for more groove stuff, the Kagermann & Keller contribution will suit you well, although I even more liked the minimalist, hypnotizing effort by Thomas Fanger and the excellent improvised piece by the Rainbow Serpent duo (despite its chaotic, experimental ending) following after that. “Guitarmoon” by Cosmic Hoffmann makes a nice and authentic sounding piece in his Asian-oriented. The final track is an evocative vintage improv by Filterkaffee.
The nice ride continues on second disc with another nine vibrant tracks. Stand-out pieces here e.g. are [‘ramp], who’s firing some lovely analogue gear on “Track for Michael Hoenig”. When you’re looking for some more tasty tracks with a nice swung, “Forgotten Places” by Keller & Wienekamp do the job here, as does Rainbow Serpent with Isgaard and Kagermann (although I’ve heard enough of his violin playing for now).
With “A Rainy Day”, Spyra delivers a fine 13-minute composition that merges the vintage with the contemporary in an uptempo (almost Kraftwerkian) style. Label boss Mario Schönwälder puts an end to it all by means of “Winterland”, a reflective and well-done piece dedicated to all who left this earth too early.
All in all, any serious electronic music fan should get his hands on a copy of this limited edition compilation before they are gone. Bravo Mario!
You can see what reviews I have done of this artist on the Various Artists page
Sonic Immersion © 2023