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Mike Dehnert/Roman Lindau/Sascha Rydell – Fachwerk EP 2 review

It’s refreshing to hear that unlike most underground labels, Fachwerk has a plan. The main artists on Mike Denhert’s operation – in effect Dehnert and his mates Roman Lindau and Sascha Rydell – will work on a series of collaborative releases, culminating in a tour to celebrate release number 25. Fachwerk EP is the 23rd record on the label, so expect a few more co-authored works. It’s not that surprising that there is an agenda driving the Berlin label. For the past few years, it has been one of the most industrious (and consistent) imprints, churning out functional but distinctive grooves first by Dehnert and then from Lindau and Rydell. It sounds like Fachwerk artists work hard to make the label thrive and it shows on this release.

Dehnert’s is up first with “M10” and it differs from his usual dub techno-inspired releases. The groove is dense but it’s also loose and less rigid than usual, threatening to fall apart at any point. Combined with a repetitive, soulful vocal sample and wiry acid licks, it reveals a more playful side to the Berlin producer. Lindau’s “Grow” also has a less serious edge; the producer’s usual hissing percussion and spiky rhythms prevail, but the trancey chord build at its heart suggests that he’s not just obsessed with the ultra-serious techno that prevails in his immediate vicinity. Only Rydell’s track offers a business as usual approach, with a rolling groove underpinning dark stabs and the kind of niggling, hissing percussion that has become a Fachwerk staple. In general though, Fachwerk EP 2 remains full of surprises and Lindau’s “Under Pressure” is a stripped back techno track with the same kind of raw production and muffled vocal sample as vintage DBX. One thing’s for sure: if all goes to plan, Fachwerk listeners can expect the unexpected until the label turns 25.

Richard Brophy