Kreidler - Den

Fusing elements of ambient techno, krautrock, post-rock and film music, Kreidler continue the long-running trajectory of forward thinking German musicians. As with fellow countrymen Mouse On Mars, the sheer sonic depth of their music sets them immediately apart from the vast majority of their contemporaries.

Unusually for what is essentially an electronic band, Kreidler are also masters of the organic. Den, their 11th studio album, full of earthy, mossy textures, treats electronic instruments in the same kind of way Brian Eno does – as real, living, sensual beings. The result, as with Eno, is a mesmerising and rich sonic world.

One of the things that makes Den so interesting is the power the composition has over the sounds used. Light, delicate ornamentations are bound together into dark, tense shapes. Dissonance is sometimes used, but in context the result never sounds dissonant. Almost tuneless percussion sounds become melodic patterns, and melodic voices become percussive patterns. Very little on the album can be said to be performing the role you’d expect it to.

Kreidler’s original vision for the album was to lose the drums altogether, and towards the end of the album we get a glimpse of what that would have sounded like. Without their skeleton of understated rhythm the softer elements lose their sense of purpose, slipping away into an ambient slop. Where Mouse On Mars are able to move seamlessly from hard-hitting grooves into ambient, watercolour washes, Kreidler unfortunately appear to be slaves to their rhythm section. However, when locked into a solid vibe, Kreidler are masters at their game, and Den is a real treat to listen to.

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