24.03.2016 | Words by: Derek Robertson
Pause for a moment, and consider this: When the machines take over, what will the music sound like? Cold, probably. Sterile. Lacking in warmth. How could it be otherwise? The absence of heart, of an intrepid soul creating, just couldn’t be disguised. It’s a problem that’s apparent in a lot of dance and electronic music; produced and polished to within an inch of its life, it may be technically perfect, but it fails to give a glimpse into the human behind the machine. There’s a great irony to the fact that the dancefloor is one of the great liberators, designed to unite people in harmony and euphoria, and yet has given rise to some of the harshest, most impersonal music ever created.
It’s a conundrum I’m sure Pascal Pinkert is aware of. As Dollkraut, the Dutch producer has invested his time traveling in the opposite direction, giving his Tin Man an all-too-human heart; his creations are unmistakably the work of a human, warts and all. Over several EPs and 2014’s Schimanski’s Black Lullabies, he’s put his encyclopedic musical knowledge to work, re-imagining the past in glittering new ways. It’s modern yet familiar, and retro but never overly so, like recalling some long lost music from your childhood through the fog of time. Deliciously imperfect, in a way that’s almost reassuring, the fuzziness and rough edges recall the Golden Age of lo-fi and the Seventies, of fifteen-song soundtracks to bizarre B-movies that somehow, in spite of everything, sounded like the coolest thing ever committed to tape.
Some of the styles and sounds you’ll know and love, but you’ll never have heard them like this; his skill and ear for a melody means that his music practically glows. Time then to give thanks to this analogue sound wizard, here to bring back communion and good times in all their widescreen, glamorous, cinematic glory. The machines aren’t winning yet.