Apparat “The Devil’s Walk” (Mute)
This is where I as the reviewer tell you as the listener to everything you know about X, set it aflame and forget about it as this right here and right now is different that anything the X has ever done. But no. We can’t do that. Why? Because Sasha Ring aka Apparat (X) is not like most other artists in that his wide, wide wanderings between techno and IDM have brought him to the shores of many (many) genres. From his debut Multifunktionsebene on his own (jointly helmed with with Marco Haas/T. Raumschmiere) label Shitkatapult, to ‘07’s Walls and his more recent work with !K7, Ring has always been a restless child. On The Devil’s Walk Ring hits a cinematic line and will inexorably (again) bring the comparisons to My Bloody Valentine—although I won’t be the poor sucker who makes ‘em? Hrmm. However, there does seem to be a bit more of a cohesive narrative than we’ve seen in past work, which if one must draw a comparison canters more alongside Karin Dreijer via Fever Ray, minus the icy warp, than it does any ponies of the shoogazing variety. Follow me? It’s a sober, high-energy, slow-moving effort which certainly wins in the end in both the small moments and in the large; the strings of “Soft Voices Die” are of as much import as the choir of eunuchs (or sweet-tenored children) on the LP’s lead-out “Sweet Unrest.” Past fans will be appeased and new converts multitudinous—their brains immolated and hearts sucked into a space that is pleasurable to occupy, despite its notable levels of melancholia.