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ARTIST
TITLE
Vermont
FORMAT
CD

LABEL
CATALOG #
KOMP 114CD KOMP 114CD
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
3/18/2014

With an artist roster as prolific and well-established as Kompakt's, you won't find much downtime that could be used for new entries to the catalog. That's why the label is especially happy to not only present Vermont's inaugurating full-length, but also to introduce two distinguished producers to the fold that have built their impressive careers in Kompakt's immediate vicinity, albeit appearing on the label for the very first time: Innervisions' Marcus Worgull and Danilo Plessow (of Motor City Drum Ensemble fame), two floor familiars praised for their gripping club tunes that showcase a surprisingly unwound and novel side to their respective artist personas. With Vermont, Marcus Worgull and Danilo Plessow submit a noticeably mature work that seems to come from a well-attuned production duo, effectively concealing the fact that this is their first collaborative effort, and a decidedly informal one at that: these cuts were not conceived with specific aesthetic goals in mind, but emerged from a series of loose jam sessions disclosing the trespassing spirit of the sonic adventurer. It's in the sanctum of Danilo's former Cologne studio, surrounded by an armada of vintage analog synthesizers, that the two music buffs somewhat inadvertently tapped into the city's collective subconscious and minted 14 sleek soundscapes of almost Krautrock-ish proportions. Exhibiting high amounts of arpeggiated curiosity and following a factual no-sampling policy, tracks like wonderstruck opener "Yaiza," undulating bleep-fest "Dynamik," the cinematic "Elektron" or ambient ballad "Majestät" are immersed in the enticing allure of freeform sequencing, even deciding to forego the full-blown percussion kits you've come to love in the two producers' main bodies of work. The restricted rhythmic pallet pays off extraordinarily well, as can be heard in the rich, breathing textures of "Katzenjammer," "Droixhe," or "Ebbe": if inclined to do so, one could label them as introspective synth poems, albeit with a strong sense for structure and dramaturgy that speaks volumes about the musical kinship of their originators -- with or without drums. With this kind of sonic DNA running in their systems, it should come as no surprise that Marcus and Danilo enlisted the help of luminaries Dominik Von Senger (guitar on "Sharav," "Cocos" and "Montag") and Jaki Liebezeit (drums/percussion on "Cocos" and "Macchina"), two key figures of Cologne's Krautrock scene -- the former as guitarist with underground mainstays Dunkelziffer and Phantom Band, the latter as drummer for seminal pioneers Can. Further contributions come from Irish musician Dermot O'Mahony (violin on "Übersprung") and Cologne agent provocateur Lena Willikens (Theremin on "Lithium"), two welcome additions to the sound of Vermont: a sound that manages to be outstandingly soothing and inexplicably stirring at the same time, probably one of the rarest feats in electronic music today.