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Jagdstaffel 66 – Starfighter review

With their output gaining ever more praise through the explosion in interest over Legowelt, Crème Organisation are well placed to showcase the more renegade approaches to gritty, analogue dance music. However, it’s highly doubtful that anyone would be ready for their celebration of the F-104 Starfighter jet. When an EP arrives with a construction kit of a military aircraft you know it’s serious.

The artist behind the vehicular geeking is none other than Rude 66, veteran of Bunker Records style acid and tweaked electro funk, a man with a rich experience in contorting synthesisers into creating paranoid ambience and rock solid grooves. As you might expect he’s showcasing a slightly different side to his productions this time around, spreading this strain of his psyche across five chilling cuts of restrained techno.

If there’s one element which characterises this EP, it’s the choral pads that dominate each track. The beats and acid lines, for the most part, drop in a polite and measured manner. The sounds themselves are rough and hissing, but neatly side-stepping unnecessary volume. Instead these disembodied wraith vocals ring out haunted melodies, which creates a consistent atmosphere of other-worldliness. “Alle Piloten Mit In Den Tod” is a prime example of this mystical incantation, sounding at once floor-ready and far too cerebral for the club.

“Grossenwahn” is more clearly aligned to engage with your mind, as a slow, snare-only beat thuds out in the midst of a thick blanket of the aforementioned choir-synth. Whichever track you turn to, the consistency is wonderfully palpable, due largely to the same sound bank being drawn on to craft the tracks. The real skill of a musician is in taking one approach and creating five distinct and utterly engrossing tracks from it. Jagdstaffel 66 has more than proved his worth in that department.

Oli Warwick