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answer code request-gens 2lp (ostgut ton)

Price: $25.99


answer code request: gens

Answer Code Request returns with his sophomore album Gens on Ostgut Ton, entering darker but equally bass-heavy territory. Answer Code Request's 2014 debut Code was an exciting moment for electronic music in Berlin. As a hybrid gesture, the album's spirit recalled an especially fruitful era in the German capital from the mid-90s to early 2000s, when dub and pad-driven Detroit techno cross-pollinated with Berlin's industrial aesthetic to create one of the city's most exciting musical chapters. Today the musical vision offered by Berghain resident Answer Code Request, real name Patrick Gräser, has proved far-sighted. While at first glance electronic music in 2018 seems increasingly balkanized, borders between genres have once again become fuzzier. Now, on his follow up album Gens, Gräser looks beyond the bass euphoria of Code toward darker horizons and a desolate atmosphere befitting of current global circumstances. In a sense, Gens (Latin for "tribe" or "lineage") reverses the notion of the hardcore continuum as proposed by music journalist Simon Reynolds; embedded in a tradition of US and continental European techno, Gräser seeks its disruption through hardcore outgrowths, from ambient jungle to later variations of British bass music and IDM. On Gens, the unsettling atmosphere is established early on with the fading rave opener of the album's synonymous title track, and continues through the scrambled military communications and post dubstep rhythms of "Sphera". From there, sci-fi pads, heavy phasing, and alien syncopation lead explorative third track "Ab Intus" out into space. A glimmer of otherworldly positivity arrives with the warm, distorted breakbeats and interwoven synth melodies of album standout "knbn2", while Gräser melds jungle and techno, "Amen", and 4/4 kicks, on his most dancefloor-oriented "Cicadae". Beatless moments of ambient melancholy lay a foundation for the second half of album, where soon the faster, more hectic stereo delays, broken rhythms, and heavy bassweight of "Audax" and "Tu" shift the focus back and forth between double and half-time. The hyper-distorted bassline, synthesized ember crackling, and contemplative melody of heavy album closer "An Unattainable Distance" provides perhaps the most otherworldly moment on Gens. Here, Gräser's massive sound trudges away from the dancefloor with a slow, resounding kick drum, pounding off in the distance and into an electronic abyss. On Gens, Gräser continues to offer an alternative, bass-heavy, and groove-based path forward for techno -- one that both challenges listeners and leads them through a sonic narrative.

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