After a few nice but largely unnoticed 12″s for lower-profile labels, Dürerstuben is ready to make a serious maneuver, and Pampa is pleased to provide them with the proper platform. The Sheets of Rane EP is the Berliner duo’s most sophisticated statement yet, imbuing cold programmed sounds with a glowing human touch and a penchant for melody.
A1 “Gscheids Planet” unfolds with a deceptive intro, click-clackety downtempo stomps and crunchy snares beneath a tender vocoder coo, just when some muted guitar plucks crescendo into a burst of robo-synths. Although three minutes have passed, only now does the song reveal its true nature, a summery tune with rich synths that billow in the wind.
Then, as its title indicates, A2 “Haeckles Kosmos” further explores Dürerstuben’s fascination with the unlimits of outer space. This star system in particular has a very tropical flair, punctuated with bouncy parallel fifths straight out of the Italo Orient. In between movements, the duo makes some brief non sequiturs into piano balladry, the kind that force a smile (and a record deal) out of DJ Koze.
Finally, venturing even further into jacking territory, B1 “Freiherr in der Wall” hinges upon syncopated, sometimes faltering beatbox rhythms, a swaggering bassline and fluttering arpeggiation. Coupled with hand-played chords, this is a prime example of how Dürerstuben can tame the beast machine and let irregularities be strengths. If you can get down with Metro Area, Zapp, Tensnake, and yes, even Survivor, then pick this one up.