Tuesday, July 7, 2020
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COUCH: Figur 5

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Artist: COUCH
Title: Figur 5
Format: CD
Label: Morr Music (@)
Distributor: Wide
Rated: *****

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On the CD cover the name of the band from Munich is spelt with wood models of the five letters C-O-U-C-H, lined up in three rows. The keyboards/drums/bass/guitar band couldn’t be better visually described. Couch design their music much the same way: it feels regular, colourful, yet also wooden, sharp-edged, as though it were constructed out of Lego blocks. Figur 5 is instrumental post-rock, competently played, based on repetition and gradual accumulation. I am reminded of a sadder, more introspective version of math rock, but after the first four tracks or so Couch seem to lose their way and play round and round with just the bare bones of an idea. Instead of building up momentum, they get tangled in the web they have woven and the sense of impending danger is completely lost. The CD closes with "Läss nicht nach", a nice example of Couch "figur", an arabesque precisely carved with guitar and keyboards, and yet a track that does not leave a particular emotion. Maybe it’s the sense of urgency that has escaped this CD. All the more pity, since the opening track had promised a touch more energy and direction, which gets stifled after the first three tracks. Let us not give them up, but Figur 5 is successful only in parts.

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