After the release of their first effort in 2009, Moderat garnered praise for their ability to synchronize minimalism with catchier, dance-floor beats, creating a sound which is at times trance-inducing—like the initial seconds on II’s 10-minute long “Milk”—and elsewhere aggressively forceful. To an infrequent electro dabbler like myself, what immediately stands out about the genre is that the songs drone on and never seem to culminate in any kind of apex. The high points on II are a good reminder that we wouldn’t have some of the best hip hop compilations if it weren’t for the sampling gold mine present in some of the best electro efforts like what we have here. I can appreciate that.
Moderat’s music video for II’s “Bad Kingdom” is a compilation of hand-drawn black and white sketches fading into one another chronicling the story of one man’s descent into a spiral of corruption and greed. It’s the kind of thought-provoking work we need to see more of in a medium that has arguably seen the end of its heyday.
Touring in support of their second album together, II, Moderat (the union of Apparat and duo Modeselektor) stop at the Neptune on Wednesday, August 28th. This Seattle showing is one of a handful of stateside stops for Moderat. After Seattle, they’ll head to Los Angeles and New York before heading back to their country of origin, the electro capitol of the universe, Germany. Seattle-based electro musician Vox Mod will open on Wednesday.
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