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sharp like a broken bone


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released May 3, 2014

This breakcore album by versatile Canadian electronic musician Holzkopf delivers everything the previous Attenuation Circuit releases deliberately left out in terms of repetitive beats. More minimalist than many minimal techno tracks, the album is exclusively based on percussive sounds – no layers here, no sine waves either. Still, a high degree of variety is ensured by tempo shifts of a sometimes brutal, sometimes subtle nature, as well as by a gradual shift from highly syncopated breakbeats well beyond the 180 bpm mark to almost danceable ‘4 to the floor’ beats. Using filters, equalisers, reverb, and time-stretch effects, Holzkopf gets an astounding variety of timbral nuances out of his electronic percussion sounds. Sometimes reminiscent of the ecstatic rumble of Balkan brass bands, the next second they sound like heavy industrial machinery in a disaster scenario. What links this refreshingly compact 28-minute album and its complete absence of monotony to the rest of the label catalogue are not the “musique concrète” connotations, however. It is the spirit of experimentation evident in the way Holzkopf models sounds to create intensive atmospheres, proving that atmospheric density and powerful rhythms need not be opposites. The limited first edition is not only hand-painted, but individually (and organically) designed with paint and wood shavings as an affectionate tribute to the literal German meaning of the name Holzkopf (‘wood head’).




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