Tobi Neumann

Fliederlieder

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Berlin-based Tobi Neumann, who is one of the forces behind the electro and house scenes in Germany, proves that techno is a dish best served warm on Flieder Lieder. Neumann is a well-schooled knob twiddler and DJ, having remastered such artists as Human League, produced for folks like Miss Kittin and Chicks on Speed, and wowed crowds from Berlin to Ibiza as a DJ. On this release, he bounces pleasingly all over the map yet never loses sight of the tuneful potential of his chosen idiom (and never gets caught up in the traps of coldness or monotony). "A Night to Remember" spreads sweet, buttery vocals across a pounding bottom-heavy beat but maintains all the heat that such a title would suggest. "Why Do You Love Me," by contrast, is pleasingly grim, angular and industrial, while the tunefully techno blasts of "Rancho Relaxo" do fine service to a Sebo K and Anja Schneider collaboration, though American Josh Wink's more limber, smooth working of the track is a slight notch above Neumann's. The trip-hoppy "Home on a Sunday" (by Alejandra Iglesias, aka Dinky) is a smashingly moody adventure that sounds like it could have shot straight out of Bristol, England, at the end of the millennium. On this mix compilation, DJ extraordinaire Neumann explores numerous possibilities, from minimalism to deep house and a whole bunch of beat-heavy points in between.

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