Words by Asmus Ougaard Dohn

Electro, the proto-techno genre pioneered in the early 80s by artists like Afrika Bambaataa, Juan Atkins, and Kraftwerk, seems to be resurfacing once again, after a much needed post-clash hiatus. As its bubbling arppegios and 808 rimshots ascend through stale waters of straight, reverb-engorged techno, it brings back melody, mood and breakbeat to a scene otherwise exclusively obsessed with function. Like the zap from a resonant filter playing itself, the gates of Neptune’s Lair are reopened, and the digital tsunami of electro is washing over the techno landscape, flooding record stores, nightclubs and mixtapes.

Luckily, many of the new releases are a lot less clichéd and on the nose than the awful Drexciya-references of the previous paragraph. One in particular is the new LP Days of Dissent, by Umwelt, picked up by the german label Killekill, who started a new sub label for this release. They’ve previously flirted with the genre by releasing tracks by Stingray & Radioactive Man (which are killers). With Umwelt, they struck a veritable gold mine (in lieu of any aquatic sources of wealth, since we’re done with the Drexciya references).

Umwelt has steadily been releasing solid electro records for almost 20 years, but arguably mostly getting attention in electro-predisposed circles. Maybe that will change soon.

Killekill man Nico Deuster:

“I asked [Umwelt] for a demo for Killekill and its labels and was hoping for tracks I could make a great 12″ of. I got 14 tracks and after weeks of trying to pick the best, I finally realized I held one of the best electro albums ever in my hand – banging beats and the balls to go big and epic, subtle melodies, drama, funk – this album has got it all, and what’s most important, the music on it is the exact opposite of so much other music nowadays: It is emotional, it tells a story, it is easily recognizable and it is not interchangeable. It’s just Umwelt.”

Release date:

Vinyl: October 17th

Digital: October 31st