Genre: Electro/House Year: 2004 Country: Germany Official Site: Ellen Allien Details: Tracks & Audio Label: Bpitch Control Records
They say the New York House scene is moving to Berlin and, quite frankly, it's somewhat true. The old communist world is actually a breeding ground for electronic music and the New York house DJs that have moved there for bigger fame and fortune under their new foreign status are finding themselves competing with the already well established Berliner artists. Artists who have made small names for themselves within Germany, but for good reason, should be discovered outside their wall so to speak. Ellen Allien, creator of Berlin's Bpitch Control, is finally starting to be recognized globally after nearly a decade of electronic experimentalism and expert manipulation of minimalist sound.
Allien's latest My Parade provides a sampler into the sounds that penetrate clubs like the Pfefferbank in Berlin. The hip 80's/new wave clad Berliners have been dancing it out until dawn to Allien's sound for years and, after a recent world tour, Allien is quickly adding on to her fanlist. What many quickly dismiss as out of date minimalist electro is an unfortunate inability to see that minimalist is indeed quite complicated, a nice twist in oxymorons. An impatient ear is perhaps failing to see that a mix put forth by Allien is a carefully crafted melange of the best disco-inspired beats of the past meets new wave techno, a true representation of the current German electronic sound.
Breaking in with 80s sounding vocalist tracks, My Parade continues on into harder house sounds with "Relax Your Body" and "Keys of Life". These tracks demonstrate the power of a deep bass line and move in 2-step rhythm only to be mixed and tweaked into body jolting beats that leaves one smiling with the realization that this petite German girl knows how to work the tables. With two other tracks from Bpitch Control artists as well as a few of her produced songs like fan-favorite "Dresden", the compilation proves itself to be a sort of sampler for its home scene.
My Parade isn't Allien's greatest works but it is worth a listen. The CD shows that Allien is still evolving, still experimenting, and because of this still on top of her game. After all, the best tracks on this CD are those that she produced which sheds light on her future, more global DJ career. For samples of her produced songs, check out her online radio at www.ellenallien.de.