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Frechbax - Frech AJACD002
Review, written by Morpheus Music

Pumping basses, transparent synths and a range of esoteric effects - Frech's promotional material describes the sound as a "minimal progressive style with psychedelic influences". Moody openings and flute like tones give way to bright beats and airy electronics with deeply effected vocal bytes and a solid bottom end. The tempo is generally a fairly pacey mid-dance beat with mechanical, regular kicks and crisp snares and hats. The synth voices are quite acidic on the whole thin and squirting, but compared to the rhythmic elements, melodic and ambient features are relatively lazy and drifting in nature.

Dark atmospheres and shady moods combine with upbeat percussion and driving loops to create an overall mood of simple clean psychedelia. The clarity of the mix suggests contemporary technoscapes or cyberdreams. The emphasis on Frechbax is primarily on the beats - repeating, cycling, thudding deep enough to feel.

The artwork is similarly clean and light - a computer-generated life form of curling copper tendrils supports a spiralling brainlike growth in contrasting sky-blue. This structure is repeated in variant forms throughout the package - on the rear of the booklet closed tight, behind the CD in close-up, inside the inner booklet wide open and spewing its contents skyward. Apart from this artificial creature everything else is a flat white. Text, a functional turquoise, provides credits, contact details and track information.

Frechbax is Sebastian Auer who, I understand, has been DJ'ing and performing live in Germany for some years. This debut album is released on Ajana Records, a sub-label of Trishula Records. Apparently the voice samples on track nine Suendenbock are of Klaus Kinski speaking in German. Overall a trancey, acidic collection of uncomplicated electronica.

Fans of psychedelia in favour of airy, understatement and minimal melody. Frechbax will be appreciated by downtempo fans who prefer beats at the upper limit of the genre.

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