Them Germans eh?, with their Grünewald and Dix; all this confessional expressionism… it can make you quite dizzy.
I like Guido Möbius, I like his itchy music and his wild conceits; his records always seem to have a restless quality that borders on the impatient. This hyper inquisitiveness often can drive the listener nuts; and last year’s Spirituals was a prime example. Adding Möbius’s fevered approach to that record’s biblical subject matter meant you had an LP that was fervid and brilliant and damned difficult to take at one sitting. Them Germans eh?, with their Grünewald and Dix; all this confessional expressionism… it can make you quite dizzy.
Now we have the remix LP Through The Darkness Gathers, which in many ways is a much more attractive proposition, the original’s sharp elbows being hidden by a richer and smoother cloth. There are some truly great remixes here, some kicking the original into the veritable cocked hat. Senking’s take on the opener Evil Ways is still has the original’s busy nature and menace but it boasts an abstract quality that somehow doesn’t make you feel you are listening in a pressure chamber with no escape. Rotaphon nearly have us nodding off with Lappland Schneit before a brilliantly kooky mix of Godhead Appears, replete with sweet vox, various odd percussive elements and cello sets the record on its course. Jason Forrest’s mix of Judgement is as usual a heady mix of funny sounds and fractured, shuddering rhythms: he’s a brilliant artist, and manages to make The Last Judgement sound rather appealing. Candie Hank’s take on The Reign Of Sin is a quirky thing that starts wandering off into spazzcore territory before settling down to a very enjoyable (non-danceable) mini rave.
The last three tracks seem to form their own little collective, kicking off with Mesak’s take on Babylon’s Falling. Importing some plodding, D.A.F. on tranquilisers synth beats into this track is a marvellous thing; it’s the original’s tripping brother. And Babel In Port To Mesak also has zoned out nature that sets up the “ trip hoppy” (Sic!, Sic!) feel of Sick Girls’ remix of All Around Me perfectly, the mood on this second number successfully recalibrating the atmosphere from one of those elegant, spacey trip hop records from DJ Shadow or DJ Krush. Daniel Padden’s Send The Ark is a great ending too, again carrying on the more reflective vibe of the previous two tracks to create a brilliant lament.
So there you go, one to get your teeth into.