Gregor Tresher

Neon: Works in the Mix

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Neon -- Works in the Mix is sort of a strange, hybrid release for Gregor Tresher. In its vinyl manifestation, it's a two-disc 12" package featuring four new tracks, one on each side. In its CD version, it's a nine-track retrospective combining those four previously unreleased cuts with five previous releases, resulting in a complete collection of his work for the Datapunk label to date. On the CD release, the nine tracks are presented in a continuous DJ mix. Those coming to Tresher's work for the first time (and who aren't already familiar with the general conventions of German techno) may be taken aback by the almost featureless minimalism of tracks like "Heat" (which really consists of one musical idea repeated for over five minutes) or "Neon" (which opens with a fun, disco-y figure but then fails to go anywhere interesting over the course of its eight-minute length). But the relative aridity of those tracks just heightens your sensitivity to the only slightly more varied but surprisingly more compelling material: tunes like the jittery and quirky "Accel," the apocalyptic "Doom" and "Firebutton" (both featuring an affectless Teutonic voice intoning lines about the end of the world), and the lovely "Firewalls." This may not be the best possible introduction to the genre for newcomers, but aficionados should probably consider it an essential purchase.

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