As one of Europe’s most successful techno labels Kompakt isn’t just an economic working company, it’s home of some of the most influential artists in electronic music. Between house, ambient and all the varieties of techno it still created it’s own sound over the years.
Some call it the Sound of Cologne, others just describe it as the Kompakt Sound, however you like to call it, it’s timeless, solid and most of it sooner or later become DJ’s favourites.
One of these outstanding artists with an own sound and an own language are TERRANOVA.
Started in 1996 by DJ and producer Fetisch as a project with shifting members, the line up was enlarged when Fetisch teamed up with &ME, founder of the Keinemusik label. Back from the underground, the duo released their revered longplayer Hotel Amour in 2012. After a bunch of remixes from producers like GUI BORATTO, ADAM PORT and others they now come up with a new EP called Painkiller, a nice four track vinyl with original tunes and interesting feature guests.
What we usually know from TERRANOVA is this stack of deep minimal tunes, sliced into handy and highly club fitting pieces, often garnished with beautiful and soulful lyrics which make us soon forget that we still listen to a kind of synthetic electronic music.
The Painkiller EP also can satisfy these expectations and breaks up all the static techno structures with smooth and partly soulful vocals. Firstly the already known TERRANOVA collaborator Bon Homme a.k.a. Thomas Høffding, singer and bass player of WHOMADEWHO and newly solo artist, brings all his emotion into the opener You, which culminates in a classy techno outfit until it comes back to his voice. Title track Painkiller also shows Høffding’s melancholic timbre and floats into a straighter climes of club music, brightened by harmonious piano chords. Finally the B side brings diversion, when none other than french house legend Jennifer Cardini contributes with strange and alienated lyrics on a track called Wunderbar. This one starts as an cover version of Christiane F.’s same titled ironic new wave classic, which was released in 1982, and quickly turns into a surprising dance floor filler with maximum deepness and dopey after hour flair. That little thing ease up the whole release and offers a more relaxed access into this record.
At the end of the day TERRANOVA celebrate an interesting battle between modernism, which means an open minded sound structure and the traditionalism of simple and well-tried dance music, both with the eagerness to add new facets to our existing club culture.