Modeselektor have released their new album Who Else. It has been now eight years since their seminal album Monkeytown, which helped spawn the creation of their label Monkeytown Records. The German electronic music duo took time in between to join forces with Apparat as Moderat, the more downtempo, electronica trio and released two albums II and III, which led them around the world and earned plaudits from everyone for their work. After that exhausting journey, it was time to go back to their own corners and explore the eclectic sounds of Modeselektor again.
The duo have left the soothing melodies from the Moderat days behind are back with their frenetic, kinetic and thought-provoking drums, melodies and basslines.
You get that right away with the booming and powerful “One United Power,” that brings thumping bass and skittering fx underneath. Things really start to change on their collaboration with grime artist Flohio “Wealth,” the purest hip-hop collaboration on the record. Tommy Cash provides more of a melodic bridge between their Berlin techno and hip-hop and R&B, before OVS offers a screaming, angry vocal on the frantic and urgent industrial techno record “I Am Your God.”
They do not mess around on the instrumentals either, like the paradoxical “Prügelknabe,” which seesaws between frenzied, scattershot beats and soft pads or the acid-infused, “Fenatyl.”
The album eventually ends on the more subdued “Wake Me Up When It’s Over,” which feels like it could have been produced in the direct aftermath of Moderat with Apparat’s harrowing voice missing from the track. It is a fitting way to usher in the new Modeselektor era for the duo as they bring back their roots without completely ignoring the past eight years of music that they have been a part of.