Stefan Goldmann & Finn Johannsen

“Macrospective”

MACROM25CD scanZoom inLabelMacro
Cat. No.MACROM25CD
FormatEXCL2CDD
Orders fromMon, 12 Sep 2011
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Review

“Two DJs, one tracklist - an innovative double DJ mix concept by the makers of Macro.” Two DJs, one tracklist. Probably for the first time in the history of dance music a release focuses on extracting the pure sound signature of the DJ. When the tracks to choose from are limited to one playlist, the sequencing decisions and mix styles of the DJs reveal their individualities. As well as the different possibilities the music allows when formed into one continuous stream. “Macrospective” is the first conceptual double mix offering a 1 on 1 comparison of the art of DJing with two masters of the craft. But you’ll also love it for being a comprehensive retrospective of one of the most intriguing contemporary label catalogues in electronic music. The two mixes by Macro founders Stefan Goldmann and Finn Johannsen highlight key works of the label (including poll winners The Maze, Law Of Return, Arcade & Lunatic Fringe), bringing out the versatility and individuality of each track. Great music allows for more than a single interpretation. Who could better suggest one than the A&Rs behind Macro and the resident DJs at the label’s residency at Berlin’s legendary Berghain club? Finn Johannsen’s mix is a one-take live journey through build-ups, peaks and comedowns, but also detours, distractions and surprises. Stefan Goldmann’s alternative take is a carefully constructed “architectural” mix, locking specific turning points of the tracks to form an 80 minutes dramatic composition of Macro’s essence. By the way, both DJ mixes are vinyl mixes. In an era of dull mp3s, the aesthetics of Macro’s carefully cut record releases are the basis for this double album. Included Tracks: Stefan Goldmann: The Maze* Peter Kruder: Law Of Return Elektro Guzzi: Android ° Santiago Salazar: Arcade (original* + Stefan Goldmann remix) Patrick Cowley & Jorge Socarras: I Remember ° Slap: Eden Now - Ricardo Villalobos Mix* Stefan Goldmann: Lunatic Fringe Raudive: Paper ° Stefan Goldmann

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Bleep43 (UK): “Macro is marking its fifth year in operation with an experiment cleverly designed to bring the action of the DJ into relief. On one level Macrospective functions as a compilation of standout tracks from a solid, established avant Techno label. Welcome returns include Goldmann's gorgeous Lunatic Fringe, Peter Kruder's gripping Law Of Return and the barely synched creak of KiNK's remix of Patrick Cowley & Jorge Socarras's Soon. The extra layer is provided in the way each DJ deploys the tracks. Johannsen tends towards a smooth groove and overall arc, Goldmann offers something more cerebral and less predictable. Interestingly, both DJs chose to draw Lunatic Fringe slowly out from the characteristically ultra-focused pump of a Villalobos remix of Slap's Eden Now, making for one of the greatest moments on both discs. Maybe the "two Djs/one tracklist" concept would be more revealing if each sector came from a very different background and tradition. Even so, it's an intriguing dimension to add to a worthy compilation. ”

Bleep43 (UK): “The actual content is excellent. Macro have carved out a niche, releasing techno with a tricksy avant-garde edge that keeps things interesting. Thus, the bumping tech-house of Goldmann’s own “Lunatic Fringe” and “The Maze” is counterbalanced with clicks, whirrs, static discharges and dysfunctional vacuum cleaners (one of my favourite sounds). On Tuomi’s “Expense Of Spirit”, an addictive groove is further enlivened with revocalled bars from underrated MC William Shakespeare. Sonnet 129 to be exact: making it one of the few house tracks in history to actively encourage prudish behaviour. The divisive Goldmann remix of Santiago Salazar’s “Arcade” slaps an entire pan-Asian orchestra on top of a reasonably straightforward techno drone. And a personal highlight is Raudive’s “Brittle” - hypnotic techno with a snatched vocal sample nagging at the edges. ”

DJ: “Skug (AT) Jetzt gehört Macro ja zu jenen Labels, die stets neue, andere Türen aufstoßen. Dass sich Disco und elektronische Avantgarden nicht ausschließen sollte zwar keine Neuigkeit mehr sein, aber wie Macro das zu beweisen bewerkstelligen ist schon einmalig. Weniger im Zusammenmixen beider Felder, denn im Gegenüberstellen erschließen sich hier Orte, die zwar immer schon mal kurz aufgeblitzt haben, die es jedoch immer noch anzusteuern gilt. Kurz: Macro regt ebenso zum Weitermachen, Anknüpfen, nochmals darüber Nachgrübeln an, wie denn all die blinden Flecke auf der Landkarte vielleicht doch etwas miteinander zu tun haben könnten. Vorschläge dazu gibt es jetzt in Form zweier CDs. Dabei fällt eine schöne Paradoxie auf: Mit beinahe unsichtbaren Cuts werden hier in der Montage Übergänge als Brüche eines heterogenen Gemeinsamen vorgestellt. "Wo bin ich denn jetzt gelandet?", ist daher der logische Ausspruch sonischer Verzückung beim Anhören dieser verschlungenen Werkschau. ”

Exclaim Mag (CDA): “Pick of the month review - From mesmerizing, minimal spiritual tracks to deep percussive phrasing, Stefan Goldmann and Finn Johannsen highlight their innovative, experimental catalogue while also demonstrating artful interruptions and approaches to DJing. ”

Groove (D): “Es gibt wenige Technolabels, die sich so konsequent einem intellektuell-konzeptuellen Clubverständnis verschrieben haben wie Macro - und ihr Niveau dabei über Jahre halten können. Für ihre erste gemeinsame Werkschau haben die Macro-Gründer Stefan Goldmann und Finn Johannsen, ganz dem eigenen Anspruch gemäß, nicht einfach ihre Lieblingstitel aneinander gereiht, sondern sich kreative Beschränkungen auferlegt. Die gleiche Auswahl an 16 Tracks wird zweimal individuell geordnet und gemixt - und sorgt so für unterschiedliche Perspektiven der beiden Labelmacher auf ihren abenteuerlustig gestalteten Katalog. Johannsen mixt live, lässt die Sache [...] langsam angehen, baut den einen oder anderen kontemplativen Schlenker ein und endet eruptiv bei Stefan Goldmanns hirnsägendem House-Diskurs "The Maze". Goldmann baut seinen Mix schrittweise zusammen und schichtet die Techno-Experimente [...] nach und nach zum großen Macro-Drama. Der akademische Ansatz geht in der Praxis bestens auf, die zwei DJ-Identitäten artikulieren sich sich so unterschiedlich, dass man meint, von jedem eine völlig eigene Geschichte erzählt zu bekommen, selbst wenn man alles buchstäblich doppelt hört.”

Musikexpress (D): “With this double mix Goldmann and Johannsen take the art of the DJ mix to the level of developing a meta-art. The Macro label has been doing the same with techno and its relatives for the last five years.”

PRESS: “Resident Advisor (UK): Every year around Academy Awards time, some smart person pipes up with the same point people have been making approximately forever about the unfairness of contests. To truly decide who is the year's best actor or actress, goes the argument, have the nominees all play the same role. That's basically what's going on with "Macrospective." The mixes' fascination is in their very different approaches to the same material. And make no mistake: the differences between the sets are big and manifest. It's a virtue of both sets that they showcase the same material to such different ends. Freistil (AT): Nicht uncharmant, wenn zwei DJs aus demselben Material auswählen und nur in der Reihenfolge, der Verdichtung bzw. der Auslassung variieren. Zwei DJs noch dazu, von denen einer auch Musiker ist und der andere auch Musikjournalist und Plattenverkäufer. So durchgängig die beiden Platten entstanden sind, so durchgängig sollte man sich diese Mixturen zu Gemüte führen. Gute Idee, gute Umsetzung, alles Gute! DJ Broadcast (NL) Forward thinking techno buffs have known it for years: the Berlin-based Macro label is the bomb. Goldmann and Johannsen have selected 16 jewels from the Macro catalogue - with staggering results. Macrospective wins on all counts: It is a splendig introduction to a great label. It is a killer Best of Macro 2007-2011. And last but certainly not least: it introduces a winning new mix concept. LiveXS (NL) Just when you think techno has fallen asleep, the alarms go on. Macrospective is a very interesting experiment, yet it wouldn't mean that much if the music wasn't so strong. Some of the tracks are indeed the best dance music currently has to offer. ”

Pulse Radio (UK): “The pair have selected exactly the same tracks for each of their mixes, but compiled the tracks in an alternative way - a method that highlights their individual talents as well as different parts of the tracks themselves. So when Pulse caught up with Finn and Stefan, we decided it'd be rude not to try and replicate their idea in interview form: the same questions in different order. ”

Technodico (IT): “Il concept, probabilmente inedito e sicuramente curioso, vede all’opera per l’appunto due DJs (Goldmann e Johannsen) alle prese con sedici brani assemblati in due tracklist che differiscono per ordine ma non per contenuto. A mutare potrebbero essere anche le sensazioni evocate dal percorso seguito, pensato per celebrare i primi quattro anni d’attività dell’etichetta tedesca, abbracciata all’IDM dai tocchi sperimentali, Abstract ed House [...]. E così ecco scorrere in sequenza (che varia i numeri) i brani di Raudive, Peter Kruder, Santiago Salazar, Elektro Guzzi, e, dulcis in fundo, Patrick Cowley & Jorge Socarras, accoppiata con cui Macro ha destato particolar clamore nel 2009. All’appello rispondono anche diverse esclusive che fanno di questa compilation qualcosa di differente rispetto all’oceanica produzione di CD mixati che, troppo spesso, si differenziano solo per il titolo. ”

Textura (CDA): “Weird in the best sense of the word, a protoypical Macro track overlays minimal techno rhythms with idiosyncratic melodic elements and in so doing separates itself from the dance music crowd. In the Macro universe, it's normal for a clubby beat pattern to be paired with atonal choir chanting, a clarinet's bleat, or a cello's groan and scrape, and no better recording in the Macro stable captures the Berlin-based label's “avant-garde-techno” aesthetic than its first label compilation Macrospective. The mixes' comprehensive contents are pulled from the label's catalogue, and consequently the listener is fully reminded of how diverse the Macro universe is. Goldmann brings an inspired imagination to whatever he does. There are subtle differences in the contents of the mixes, despite the fact that they're built from the same tracks. An impressive amount of stylistic (and oft-exhilarating) ground is covered over the course of the release, and one comes away with an enhanced appreciation for the richness of the Macro catalogue. ”

Wire (UK): “Macro is marking its fifth year in operation with an experiment cleverly designed to bring the action of the DJ into relief. On one level Macrospective functions as a compilation of standout tracks from a solid, established avant Techno label. Welcome returns include Goldmann's gorgeous Lunatic Fringe, Peter Kruder's gripping Law Of Return and the barely synched creak of KiNK's remix of Patrick Cowley & Jorge Socarras's Soon. The extra layer is provided in the way each DJ deploys the tracks. Johannsen tends towards a smooth groove and overall arc, Goldmann offers something more cerebral and less predictable. Interestingly, both DJs chose to draw Lunatic Fringe slowly out from the characteristically ultra-focused pump of a Villalobos remix of Slap's Eden Now, making for one of the greatest moments on both discs. Maybe the "two Djs/one tracklist" concept would be more revealing if each sector came from a very different background and tradition. Even so, it's an intriguing dimension to add to a worthy compilation. ”

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