In The Night

BB 378LP BB 378LP

LP version. "Barely pausing for breath after 1983's Colours And Soul, Dunkelziffer delivered In The Night the following year, their revolving line-up prompting an evolving sound. Though the playful elements of their debut remained through a trio of sun-blushed dubbers, the album also housed the ensemble's most dense, intense and serious tracks to date. The core septet of Zerlett, Linke, Krachten, Von Senger, Keul, Gelba and Schubert returned as well as the new bassist Rike Gratt, each in their own flow state on this seven track LP. But it was all change behind the mic for In The Night, as Coco Claus and Josefa Martens moved on, while Rebop Kwaku Baah, whose deep and rhythmic vocals decorated most of their debut, had sadly passed away while on tour with Jimmy Cliff the previous year. Luckily a perfect reinforcement was waiting in the wings, and the unmistakable Damo Suzuki led the charge with Helmut Zerlett taking double duties on backing vocals. The loose-limbed reggae of 'Watch On My Head' offers the warmest of welcomes on the A1, a swaying bassline underpinning breezy woodwind and synthetic fanfares with Suzuki's treated vocals forming the final instrumental layer. Things take a jazzier turn on 'Sunday Morning', in which cascading harps and glistening arps clearing the way for a snaking rhythm piano to take the lead . . . Shifting through the gears as we approach the midpoint, Dunkelziffer drop into 'Retrospection', thirteen whole minutes of pulsating and powerful psych-rock retooled for the new wave era. Leaving the fuzzbox back in Haight-Ashbury, the group layer chorus-drenched guitars and bright keyboards into a sky-scraping groove. Yelped mantras and untamed horns add a new found intensity balanced by the limber bassline and nuanced percussion which steals the spotlight during the final quarter. The B-side brings a moment of breezy beachfront cool via 'Q', a sun-kissed stroll from Methaniac fusion into ska-tinged art rock before plunging headfirst into the abrasive psychobilly of '(Do Watch What You Can) Prof.', a sub three-minute headfuck of atonal horns, off kilter percussion and overlapping vocals from Suzuki and Zerlett. Invigorated after that short sharp shock, the group lay a love song on us, the sweet nothings of 'I See Your Smile' bobbing on a Caribbean tide. Pure, playful and hard to resist, this moment of pop perfection was the ideal candidate for the album's single. There's room for one more mood swing as we reach the finale, closing cut 'Oriental Cafe' upping the intensity to deliver ten minutes of tribal percussion and Eastern influence in the same vein as 'Still Der Neuen Zeit' on their debut." --Patrick Ryder