John Lemke :: Walizka EP (Denovali)

Mechanical, rusty, leaky dub, hypnotic drone surges, anthemic electricity—it’s all there in the enhanced reissue of John Lemke’s Walizka EP.

John Lemke‘s debut album, People Do, was one of the highlights for me in 2013. His Walizka EP was released as a digital three-track appetizer for the full-length debut; however, due to the flood of good music last year, some lovely releases had to be left aside for a later investigation. Walizka was one of those lovely releases. Although released before People Do, it was created afterwards and marked a progress in Lemke’s sound and style. Now, Denovali offers a reissue of the EP on CD and vinyl as well, and on top of that, four brand new remixes by Piano Interrupted, SaffronKeira (CD and digital only), Petrels and Everyday Dust are included in order to enrich and prolong the experience.

An eccentric sound explorer, a lo-fi scientist, a seeker of exotic dub, Lemke was never into conventionality, and with Walizka he takes his sonic world into a deeper level. The EP starts off with the title track, on which organic sounding particles beat and click around a piano line that assertively leads the way. A great opener that beautifully demonstrates Lemke’s peculiar sound and style. The ride continues with “Kompass,” a mechanical, rusty, leaky dub concoction that echoes mysteriously, moves slowly and strikes accurately. A weighty, infectious little tune. The first part of the EP ends with the anthemic “Drift,” the most gripping tune out of the first three. It captures you from the very first second. The piano hits and you’re under a spell. Hopefully Lemke will keep exploring this musical path, as these three tracks leave you longing for more.

The second part of the EP starts off with Piano Interrupted’s remix of the title track. The Interrupted guys turned the track into an emotional lullaby that drifts in the electronically-spiced territories of the modern classical genre. Afterwards, SaffronKeira’s remix of “Kompass” slides in with the cleverly glitchy designs and dark ambient atmospheres that he’s known for, but with slightly less abrasive edges than on his solo and collaborative work. The ride keeps going with yet another take on “Kompass,” this time it gets a highly effective drone treatment by the mysterious Everyday Dust. For the grand finale, Petrels’ epic remix of “Drift” surges forward gradually and hypnotically packed with finely timed outbursts. An absolutely gorgeous remix, a fine ambient, drone, noise, modern classical-infused affair. If you enjoy Lemke‘s previous outputs, then you must get this reissue in one of its formats. Highly recommended.

Walizka is available on Denovali.

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