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Thinking of the Düsseldorf scene as the geography to brew an offbeat esoteric dance sound trademark would make more sense if you dig deeper into the whole phenomenon of the Salon des Amateurs. The city’s main art and clubbing institution, co-founded by Kreidler’s Detlef Weinrich, has been no stranger to slow-motion music with a ritualistic, sensual twist ever since the Salon’s dawning days. Detlef, which also activates as a club resident under the moniker Tolouse Low Trax, shaped up the scene’s sound while outlining the main coordinates that also drive his process of production - unearthly music that works out as a trance-inducing catalyst.
Toresch is a project where he joins forces with Jan Wagner and Viktoria Wehrmeister, of Klaus Dinger’s outsider kraut collective La! Neu?, to cast an improvisational, subconscious shadow on the already mentioned dimed out landscape. The resulting LP, “Essen Für Alle”, came out this year on Vladimir Ivkovic’s label, Offen Music. You may be able to identify a style pattern if you consider its precursor on Ivkovic’s label, the ravishing Rex Ilusivii “In the Moon Cage” - which also marked Offen Music’s debut.
“Essen Für Alle” consists of six tracks toying with sacred frequencies, dreams and old-school industrial disquiet. First track, The Hill, forwards as a full on electric shock mantra, driven by Wehrmeister’s haunting voice over the stirring, deep humming synths. The on-point industrial whirl doubles its meaning as articulated by the Bacchic half-spoken vocals which evoke a freakish, circular ritual sequence celebrating primary elements. An equivocal transcript of Wehrmeister’s witchy rendition would read as “they reach out their hands and make a circle give up to the big fire / they sing out loud / they reach out their hands up to the sky singing out loud, dancing wild.” This is the kind of party where I like to hang out with my friends.
Mojole is a suspenseful lullaby, a really fractured and disintegrated one. The organic synth lines emulate the melting ceiling of a subterranean cave, plenty of aquatic echoes and vocal overlapping, propagating in a watery, high temple resonance. It issues a hypnotic and repetitive pattern that could coin its own subgenre in broken consciousness dream pop. Underlying the melodic line you can hear all these stream of consciousness destroyed fragments of voice that add up to the lush delirium.
Laquella revolves around tribal pounding drums and is the most self-affirming chapter on the album. The rhythm is simple, leaving space for the echoing voice to develop in smoky and jazzy key and Spanish lyrics - which make this sound somewhat immemorial. It would be the hard-hitting point, if you could use this word to describe something so enticing. For anyone who is into sultry vibes a la Dva Damas, this is heavy rotation material.
Quadrate hits slow and you would not expect to lift from the ground after this first impression, although it turns into a pretty unpredictable, tripped out disco pastiche. Wehrmeister’s voice cuts through the patterns in urgency, with an improvisational disregard to rhythmic lines.
Speicher is an industrial, sluggish work-out stomper, with martial articulation, which makes it the absolute upper, while Comida Para Todos brings a complex beat that almost sounds Middle Eastern, unless it transforms into a robotic voodoo pulse you could hear humming in your ears while punching the air practicing mystic arts and platonic politics.
I did not figure out what the word Toresch stands for, but I think what matters more than that is how, as a whole concept, Toresch’s “Essen Für Alle” is one of those essential records to redefine industrial sound for the time being.
Tracklist:A1. The Hill
B3. Comida Para Todos