Music Reviews

Artist: Dream Control
Title: Zeitgeber
Format: 12" vinyl + Download
Label: Medical Records
This debut collaboration between Zeus B. Held and ex-Tangerine Dream Steve Schroyder is a sharp, super-polished bit of sci-fi synthpop. Across six mostly “extended mix”-length tracks you get the full works of driving pulsing synth basslines, effected vocals, guitar snippets, glitter energy and drama.

Like synthwave it delves into 1980’s era sonics with aplomb, and also pushes one step further and borrows organ sounds and early vocoder tones from the 1970’s prog rock palette, but there’s also a bright and undoubtedly modern aspect to the production that can’t be ignored.

After the glittery upfront disco feel of “Gamma Ray”, things get a little gentler and more progressive with “Time Out”, a track that seems to explore how the DNA of electronic dance music runs through both old and new. “Kant Can Dance” showcases the ‘techno throat singing’ of Kolja Simon and Felix Mönnich as ‘AlienVoices’, regular collaborators here, set to an even more Tangerine Dream-esque setting mainly thanks to the synth harpsichord sounds. When not being heavily effected, the vocal has a hint of Dieter Meier’s warmth and accent about it.

The second half also starts at pace, with the more attitude-laden “To Tomoro” with a lush full-on sci-fi-rocket-launch intro and some NASA-esque vocal samples thrown in for good measure, albeit with a vocal that doesn’t quite cut through enough. “Go Forward” is an oddity, a radio-edit-length sparse number which feels a little too much like an underproduced demo in some ways but which does provide an extra bit of breadth. The final track is the electro-symphony of “Doors Of Perception”, taking somewhat Jean-Michel Jarre-like noises and building a ten minute evolving bit of synth majesty out of it that’s masterfully balanced, a masterclass in electronic music progression.

I’m not going to play it cool, I love this and it puts a smile on my face. Not every track is a classic but it’s an energetic and unabashed electro-disco-synthpop melee with an exemplary production standard, and fans of any aspect of the broad genre will find something to enjoy in it.

Chain D.L.K. design by Marc Urselli
Suffusion WordPress theme by Sayontan Sinha