Conrad Schnitzler

Filmmusik, Vol. 2

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Swiftly following the first volume by just a few months, Filmmusik, Vol. 2 collects more previously unreleased material recorded by German electronic music pioneer Conrad Schnitzler during the 1970s and intended to be used as soundtracks for motion pictures. As with the prior release, this one contains some of Schnitzler's more accessible, rhythmic pieces. The primitive, lo-fi drum machine rhythms are up front in the mix, and the synths are a lot richer and more expressive than Schnitzler's more barren, alien excursions. While most of these tracks were sourced from the same batch of master tapes as the pieces on Filmmusik, Vol. 1, the release ends with "Lichtpunkte und Schwarze Zeichen," a 23-minute epic recorded in 1978. The first ten minutes of the piece consist of a repetitive phased drum rhythm, which is one booming kick drum away from being a classic minimal techno track. Then it shifts into a slower, sludgier rhythm, flaring up into distortion at frequent intervals. This is truly visionary, cosmic music which pre-dated techno, trance, synthwave, and pretty much every other form of hypnotic electronic music, and it still sounds ahead of its time today.

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