Industrial templates have come in and out of favor in club music for decades now, influencing the more hardcore elements of techno, finding a comfortable home with a certain dubstep contingent and providing a well of material for your neighborhood crate digger. More recently, acts like Coil, Nitzer Ebb and Suicide, who’s frontman Alan Vega sadly passed away over the weekend, have seen a resurgence in popularity among a certain internet-dwelling crowd, influenced by labels like Tri Angle, Mute and RVNG and bored by the paint-by-numbers house and techno that has come to dominate Room Ones the world over. With a background in punk and a defiantly unconventional approach to club forms, Berlin’s Ziúr is one of several artists leading the charge into a darker, rougher abyss, pushing an industrial-informed sound that fights back against the music’s (and Germany’s) fascist undertones while tearing down the notion that it’s a form for and by white cis men.
Released on July 1, Ziúr’s official debut came in the form of Taiga, four blazing tracks for Infinite Machine accompanied by remixes from likeminded producers Born In Flamez and Air Max ’97. Full of twisted melodies, distended vocal fragments and a barrage of samples and foley effects, Taiga is an immersive and at times battering release, stretching club sensibilities and challenging dancers to meet its fluctuating attitude head on. Previous remixes for Evool and Peaches showed the Berlin resident’s willingness to fuck up shadowy pop forms as the avalanche of metallic percussion and high-strung atmosphere feels right at home with each vocal. And considering that she often tests out her tracks while sound checking at a venue job, it’s no surprise that her production style feels just at home with Peaches as it does mixed with Kablam, Brood Ma and Kamixlo. As seen on Taiga, Ziúr’s music effuses a punk attitude and while an ever-larger group of producers look to the industrial end of the spectrum it’s easier than ever to pick out the real ones.
Tomorrow night (August 22), Ziúr will be performing alongside Kablam, Air Max ’97, Uli K, NI-KÜ and resident Iydes and Seb at London’s Tropical Waste night at The Waiting Room. Tickets are available here.
Photo by Marc Krause
Following up the barefaced intensity of his HPE EP, Melbourne’s Air Max ’97 has contributed a key remix to Ziúr’s Taiga EP, out July 1 on Infinite Machine. Following up an expansive US tour and with an EU and Asia tour on the way, AM97 seems to quite literally be all over the place these days, but that hasn’t seemed to effect his indomitable work rate and along with the aforementioned release on his own Decisions label, he’s also found time to remix Swimful and Habits to great effect. With Taiga out a week from today, we’ve got AM97’s take on “Lilith”, made up of a solipsistic kick pattern, the battered refrains of vocalist RIN and icy choir-synths that increase in their ferocity and begin to stab through the mix at the midway point of the track. On the whole, Ziúr’s has worked magic with an industrial sound palette and willingness to always ratchet up the severity of her productions a little bit further and AM97’s twisted contribution is situated perfectly at the end of the release. Look out for AM97 in Europe/Asia over the coming months and grab Taiga on July 1.
Berlin-based duo Evvol entered our consciousness last Summer with their debut Eternalism LP, offering a refreshingly subtle take on dancefloor-focused pop that hardly fits into the “darkwave” label often ascribed to them. A little under a year later and the album has received a collection of remixes including a twisted effort from Ziúr, one of our absolute favorite Berlin producers who has a load of head-turning music that’s slated to come out over the next year or so. An appearance on the Tropical Waste NTS Show and tracks like “Lips” and “Collar Bone” (featured in February’s For Club Use Only) have begun to drawn attention to Ziúr’s outsized cyborg-ian productions, tracks that seem to balance on a knife’s blade between a host of sounds, balancing the tension inherent in dubstep with a more manic resemblance to hardcore. As far as the Evvol remix goes, Ziúr took on “Four Steps From Home”, potentially the most dance-ready track of the album, and transformed it into a growling, heaving monster, the original’s chorus pitched down into a ritualistic yawn and eventually almost entirely abandoned in favor a collection of creaking metallic noise and echoing blips that almost seems to harmonize in the copious amounts of empty space in the production. Ziúr doesn’t have an official release out yet, but the Berliner already has a sound that’s all her own and is only set to expand and mutate into exciting new spaces as her career progresses. Artwork for the remix was done by Stefan Faehler.