Friday, 17 October 2014

Objekt - Flatland (PAN)

No surprise, PAN coax the best out of Berlin-based producer TJ Hertz, whose earlier tunes showed the promise that's fulfilled on Flatland. It starts with a BOOOMPF! but instead of continuing that way in a bid to pummel you into early submission it's a paced-out repeat signal punctuating near silence as a form of intro.

Flatland is 'a world in which any scene can be seen from every angle at once' according to Hertz; a prismatic city of glass, then. Futurist speculation in electronic music about tomorrow's urban world may be nothing new but Hertz fashions his with aplomb. From One Fell Swoop onwards we're gliding over and through gleaming towers, neon-lit, in a sleek ship, surrounded by Coke and Pan Am video adverts, no doubt. The teeth of Rachet click into place relentlessly - perhaps it's the mechanism that drives the city, or a metaphor for the industrialisation of every brain, who knows, it's a good slab of Electro moderne anyway. Agnes Apparent has the feel of spotless sci-fi sound imagined by Vangelis for that film, as does much of the album, but Hertz sprinkles it all with details that make the difference. Bleeps and padded hammer blow motifs run throughout, adding continuity. First Witness suggests as loose crime storyline, followed by Interlude (Whodunnit?) and Second Witness. Who dun what we can only imagine, but non-specific thematic linearity is no bad thing and this is one good album.

Stream Flatland here

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