Given that I keep bumping up against "You Must Be this Tall to Ride the Internet" signs, blogging has been difficult of late. But I know that you, my Pitchfork faithful, will be visiting today, so I leave you with a quick wrap-up of four must-have releases from Zürich's always excellent Bruchstuecke label.
Stryo2000 and Roli Widmer (aka Bang Goes), together known as Galoppierende Zuversicht — the kit-building, improvisatory live techno act that took MUTEK, NYC and SF by storm last summer — dust off their doomsday machines to deliver three 12"s and one 10" under various aliases, with all tracks in the fairly-great to mindblowing categories. GZ's long, recorded-live A-side cut, "Erdschuber," is a heaving beast with black-ice syncopations and a Zamboni of a bassline, plus a healthy dose of Latin swing connecting them to erstwhile Swiss compatriot Luciano. Are trombones going to be the big motif for 2006? (Cf. Pantytec, Villalobos mix of Burial Mix.) Roli's solo cuts range from minimal, focused grooves to Technicolor cartoony ho-downs; clatter is the name of the game. Stryo drops two dark, heavily syncopated tools pockmarked with stray voices and scattershot rolls plus one almost Detroitish cut — if Detroit artists started listening to Raymond Scott for inspiration, maybe. Finally, on a limited-to-500 10", each artist takes a solo crack at even madder fare. Stryo's "Morgens Um Elf" (11 a.m.), according to the press release, documents an afterparty getting raided at the 11th hour, as it were, pulling itself slowly to pieces as a woman asks, "Where do we go now?" Roli, meanwhile, turns out the scariest cut since Motiivi:Tuntematon's "1939" — this one, though, isn't a buzz-bomb but a chemical attack that suffuses the atmosphere and plants lung-mines that explode with every gasp. Apparently the substance is laughing gas: the infotext cites the vocals as being a children's fairytale, a "Punch and Judy radioplay," that's been re-cut to provide "an absurd trip into drug users' attitudes and slang…. When Roli Widmer played it for the first time in Zurich, back in 1995, the floor exploded with laughter, which is an exception to the rule — the rule being a lack of humour in the club scene. That's the other reason why the release is limited." But you don't have to dig "funny music" to be seduced by this. Certainly from a non-Swiss-German speaker's perspective, the 11-year-old track isn't "funny ha-ha" but "funny uh-oh," a nail-biting, knuckleball that goes right to the gut.