Panthera onca

'Centuries ago, before the coming of the conquerors, the Aztec Mystics ruled an empire larger than what is now known as Mexico. The symbol of their power was the Jaguar, the powerful creature that stalked the jungles just outside of their monumental cities. In todays world, the Aztec civilization lies in ruins. Their temples and tombs have been desecrated and their power animal, the Jaguar has almost been hunted to extinction. Despite the encroachment of Western civilization, untold power and awareness yet lie within these ruins and the spirit of the Jaguar.
To desecrate these ruins and this spirit would be harmful to modern man. For these are things that are beyond the perception of modern world. Legends foretold of the greatest of the Aztec Mystics vowing vengeance on anyone who violated their temples and totems. This warrior society used their most powerful totem as their symbol, they were known as the Knights of the Jaguar.

Even now in the new millennium, the long dead Jaguar Knights can sense the violation of their symbols and spirits. Using the Jaguar as their spirit guide to travel through the realms of Death itself, they can stalk their prey through time and exact their ultimate vengeance.''

text written by the Ancient

DJ Rolando a.k.a. The Aztec Mystic - 2000 Jaguar
Info here.

This CD version includes three remixes by Jeff Mills, Octave One and Mad Mike (not the Derrick May ones, though) plus the various re-releases' b-sides. Once more, watch the video here.

Check some Wiki info on the Jaguar Warriors and their role in the Aztec army, as well as on the Jaguar beliefs in Mesoamerica, on Aztlán and the concept of La Raza.

Also check this page on the UR vs. Sony/BMG case; to think that those guys accuse others of piracy...

Pro Bono Publico

Another Vertical Form record (*), this one's a showcase compilation sold half-price, if I remember correctly.

Lots of abstract pop and post-rock goodies here, four great groups get three tracks each: Pan American (*), Hausmusik's ISO68, Corker/Conboy aka A.P.E. (I have that first album somewhere...) and Kim Hiorthøy of Smalltown Supersound. Serious, introvert and emotional music, organic and chilled - occasionally depressive, but that never hurt anyone, did it? (... It did, after all?)

Recommended for headphones.

VA - 2002 Pro Bono Publico
Info here.

Audio Island

Mostly known for his 'pop ambient' side, Markus Guentner released through Ware this album between his two excellent yet more or less abstract albums for Kompakt (check them here and here) that attracted most of the attention. I first heard his stuff from this 12" and immediately decided that I liked him; on the other hand he seemed to be too much into GAS-like loopy deepness. Then came this one.

Besides being the most clubbish material he's ever published and probably the most understated of his albums, in my opinion this is one of the best releases in the whole Cologne mini-tech thing; crispy techhouse and deep techno, richly textured with his customary post-indie sampling, his tracks balance perfectly between club functionality and emotional power, between minimalism and sensuality. A must for lovers of the sound of Cologne (although he's Bavarian, ha ha).

Contains a sweet cover of Talk Talk's 'Such A Shame' that also made it as a 12", and a powerful Acid Maria contribution.

Markus Guentner - 2003 Audio Island
Info here.

My daughter seems to like this one too. Which is weird, since she usually likes slower and more arpeggio-electro pop stuff (the Italians Do It Better compilation is already a standard). Possibly it's the full frequency spectrum she appreciates...

Eurobeat Club Classics

And for the post #400 another 3CD box, this time from british Kickin Records, bringing together the 'Eurobeat 2000 Club Classics' compilations. That is, just Vol. 1, 3 and 4 (don't ask me why Vol.2 was left out...). And this is open air music in my opinion, but anyway.

The hideous covers of the originals at first repelled me; and the title was totally misleading as far as I am concerned, as here in Greece we used the 'Eurobeat' tag for those cheesy, post Italo-house or eurotrance tracks that popped up in the commercial charts during the early and mid '90s. But no, this is a collection of hard acid anthems, techno, hardcore, and jacking house from all over the world; the sound that dominated many many dancefloors, warehouses and fields across Europe (hence the title, I guess) and that Kickin was apparently trying to summarize/introduce to british ears.

(see P.S.2010/04/26)

Once again, this is a compilation for those that were not 100% into this kind of 'club' music. Most of the hits are so obvious, some of the rest sound really dated (especially from CD1) and there are no rarities in here. But it works well as a reminder of those times and was really convenient for CDJing; so many classics to choose from, in a neat pack. I'll just point out the Dave Clarke's Red tracks, Mike Ink's 'Paroles', the Mike Dearborn classics and that timeless Heckmann 'Amphetamine' epic.

VA - 1994 Eurobeat 2000 Club Classics Vol.1
Info here.

VA - 1996 Eurobeat 2000 Club Classics Vol.3
Info here.

VA - 1997 Eurobeat 2000 Club Classics Vol.4
Info here.

Box info here.

P.S. 2010/04/27: Thanx to MB, here's Vol.2 as well.

VA - 1995 Eurobeat 2000 Club Classics Vol.2
Info here.

P.S. 2010/04/26: Forget (most of) the above. Thanks to shadow's comment and after some digging, I realized that Eurobeat 2000 was a club night run by Frankie D, hosted in various venues in London during the '90s. Also functioned as a short-lived label (check the Greenhaus track, #9 in Vol.3). Makes more sense that way; but I still think it's an unfortunate name.
Concerning active links, I found only a Facebook account and a site concerning his recent more-Goth-than-techno club activities through Flag Promotions. On the other hand, Eurobeat 2000 gets mentioned a lot in many artists' appearances lists.

Dead Man

The ancient tradition that the world will be consumed in fire at the end of six thousand years is true, as I have heard from Hell.

For the cherub with his flaming sword is hereby commanded to leave his guard at tree of life; and when he does, the whole creation will be consumed and appear infinite and holy, whereas it now appears finite and corrupt.

This will come to pass by an improvement of sensual enjoyment.

But first the notion that man has a body distinct from his soul is to be expunged. This I shall do, by printing in the infernal method, by corrosives, which in Hell are salutary and medicinal, melting apparent surfaces away, and displaying the infinite which was hid.

If the doors of perception were cleansed, every thing would appear to man as it is, infinite.

For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things through narrow chinks of his cavern.

Neil Young - 1996 Dead Man
Info here.

Find and see the movie. Some links here.
If you don't skip this one in the first ten minutes (or seconds), you're gonna love it.


Force Inc. 200 (and its later CD version presented here) was a compilation showcasing the Force Inc.'s minimal techno tendencies of the time, probably as an introduction with the US market in mind.

I jumped on the Force Inc. train rather late; probably through Heckmann and the acid trail. Even though I knew some of the other artists from the early days, the multitude of pseudonyms had its effect on me. Anyway, there were no discogs back then and without the 12'' press releases, a full magazines' library and/or an encyclopedic record collection you just couldn't identify anything. I guess that even local record shops' owners didn't knew what they ordered half of the time (and that's another reason why distributors were so powerful those days). Eventually I started recognizing the sound of each of the artists behind the alias, unconsciously most of the time, then to grab everything that had the Force Inc. logo on it; especially through the late '90s deep and tech phase.

Most of the oldschool is here: Heckmann, the Voigt bros., Babicz, Elhers, Gez Varley. But emphasis is given to the then-still-rising mini techno US scene, with artists like Kit Clayton, Sutech, Stewart Walker, Tomas Jirku, Twerk, Jake Mandell and Cytrax label chief Jasper (for those who follow the current 'minimal' trends, his Silent Servant guise should ring a bell). Also included is Vladislav Delay's most dry track ever and a sweet click lullaby by Donnacha Costello.

Personal favorites are R.Voigt's oldschool deep rider, Heckmanns' manic tool and this bleeping, entrancing cut-up epic by Jasper and Kit Clayton. At the time I considered it to be a weird compilation, a collection of cold tool tracks; it was rather too minimal for me. I was into strong synth melodies at the time, too much electro for the clubs and dub techno for chillout. Yet I grew accustomed to it eventually and even played a couple of the aforementioned tracks now and then (if I'd got it on vinyl, I'd play definitely more).

VA - 2001 Met@music
Info here.

Considering the course of nowdays techno, this compilation was a bit prophetic. I always felt that the sound of contemporary minimal techno lies closer to early '00s US/Canada efforts like the above or, say, Akufen, than in those so-hyped Hawtin's earlier works; and Force Inc. was the medium that brought them into Europe's attention and established them commercially (as Tresor had done for the earlier Detroit pioneers). I may be wrong, of course.

True Spirit

Three CDs are barely enough to cover the label's repertoire; consider it as an extensive 'best of..'. The track list is a fan's dream and accurately representative of the label's course through history. As for the booklet, it's more than informative if rather self-praising (yet we'd expect that); works as a much needed companion for those who haven't dug into the Tresor vaults yet. For the rest, most of the tracks you'll have or already know; there are some unreleased mixes and out of print stuff anyway.

I had to buy my copy used (it sold out quite fast, I guess) and only much later did I realized that there were things missing from inside (sticker, booklet, etc.). Bastards...

VA - 2001 Tresor Berlin. True Spirit
CD1 - CD2 - CD3 - booklet
Info here.

Birthday #3

It seems we've reached this blog's third birthday today. I know it might sound a bit cheesy, but I'd like to thank you all once more for dropping by at some time or another, for leaving a comment or a link, etc., etc.

For a change, I prepared something for the occasion, which is simply the next post. Felt right, since a) it's out of print, b) you get a CD for each year the blog goes on, and c) besides Basic Channel/ Chain Reaction and the Cologne guys, Tresor has been the most influential label on my taste in techno, as it was through them that I got in touch with the Detroit scene.

So... enjoy.

Motorbass' Early Works

In the 2003 reissue of timeless classic 'Pansoul' (*), there was a second CD bringing together legendary duo's first two self-released EPs, namely 'EP1' (1992) and 'Transphunk EP' (1993). Well, here it is.

Motorbass - 2003 Early Works (1992-1993)

Info here.

Motorbass are Etienne De Crecy & Philippe Zdar, of course. The first EP is more techno and acid oriented, still we can hear where they were going after all. 'Transphunk' points more towards their later approach of house music.


More latin influenced weirdness by Uwe Schmidt (*,*), here posing as Moog player Lisa Carbon, through his own Rather Interesting label, with a few contributions, namely by Argenis Brito (*,*). Includes an instrumental cover of 'Space Oddity'.

Fusing together spaced electronics, funk and acid with his experiments in South America's rhythms, I think with the Lisa Carbon project he attempted a contemporary take on the whole early '70s movement that combined library music with pop, jazz and 'ethnic' rhythms. To my ears, it's similar to how David Perian & Alberto Baldan's 'Happy And Crazy Music' would sound if crossed with 'El Baile Aleman', though a bit more on the clicky side and showing off more its rhythm section.

Lisa Carbon - 2003 Standards
Info here.

All That Glitters

The second album from MRI and the last one in ForceTracks (*); find their debut here.

More house- and disco-influenced, compared to either their earlier dub tech excursions or their later profile; still, in terms of track development they're leaning towards the minimal side as expected.

MRI - 2002 All That Glitters
Info here.


An album from Khan (*) through Caipirinha (*), loosely drawing inspiration from early 20th century silent movies.

I wish I had found some info on this project, but there doesn't seem to be anything around and the CD's leaflet stays totally uninformative. Some of the films I know, for the others I'm still guessing. The project unfolds in two parts; the first one ('Berlin') is a brooding, very minimalistic techno affair, borrowing its mood from early german expressionism films like 'The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari' or directors like Max Reinhard. The second part ('Hollywood') moves more into scarce electro beats and experimental breaks territory, mentioning Kenneth Anger and Carmen Miranda.

Khan - 1997 Silentmoviesilverscreen
Info here and more covers scans here.


Freestyle breaks and electro mixed compilation from Cologne and Area Code 221 label. Not exactly in the style that most people associate the Cologne sound with, I'd say, although the acid influences are apparent, especially in the 2nd CD. Includes tracks from the Pharma boys, Nick Holder, Tanith, Alex Krüger, Hans Nieswandt, along a host of other local (or not...) artists from labels like Mehrwert, Stereo Deluxe, or the french Catalogue. Plus a Norman Cook remix of Christopher Just's classic "I'm A Disco Dancer" that you've probably never heard before...

According to the CD's info, Nutronix were a DJ crew associated with Liquid Sky Cologne: Eric Eltron, now chief of Boxer Recordings, Peta (most likely this one) & Wicked, that also participated with a track in the 'Sound Of Cologne Zwei' compilation. There's a De:Bug article in German here.

There was never a Vol.2 for this one.

VA - 1999 Nutronix. The Sound Of Electric Cologne
CD1 - CD2

Info here.

P.S. While I was searching for a Liquid Sky Cologne link, I came upon the Friendsound recent post. Good timing...
P.S.2 Oops, first CD is also posted here.

10% File Under Burroughs

A tribute to William S. Burroughs, the most famous junkie ever. Or one of the most influencing contemporary artists, who incidentally left his mark on almost every aspect of expression concerning art in the second half of the 20th century; take you pick.

Unsurprisingly, a Sub Rosa release (also see the 'Hashisheen' post). CD1, named 'Beats', focuses on electronic works influenced by his work; heavy and dubby experimentations, mostly illbient-like stuff. CD2 ('Beat') captures the sound he and his buddies enjoyed, created and/or promoted; expect a lot of archival material, ancient chants, poetry reading and similar stuff.

VA - 1996 10% File Under Burroughs
CD1 - CD2
Info here.

I found out that a WSB documentary is on its way...


And since we're on a Metropolis trip, here's a post I did some time ago for Surreal Moviez.

2001 Metoroporisu
aka Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis

Director: Rintaro
Runtime: 113'
Language: Japanese (w/ soft English subtitles)
IMDb Link:
Links here.

"Metropolis is both a collaboration and an homage to four disparate auteurs. The movie harks back to Fritz Lang’s classic expressionist film Metropolis (1927) but is also directly inspired by the Metropolis manga created by the 'god of manga', Tezuka Osamu in 1949. The movie itself is an interface between the director Rintaro, known for such previous manga adaptations as Galaxy 1999 and screenwriter/ director Otomo Katsuhiro of Akira fame.
The result is a visually stunning and sometimes haunting work, set in a near future urbanized world in which robots and humans interact - always warily and sometimes tragically. The beautiful robot Tima echoes the 'two Marias' of Lang’s film, invoking the specter / hope of the oppressed rising against elite exploitation, but Tima is ultimately a far more complex figure than any of Lang’s creations. The gorgeous quasi-apocalyptic ending also sends us to a darker place than Lang’s vision of hand and heart combining, but that place resonates painfully well with millennium society, whether Japanese or Western."

Top aesthetics, top story, top anime. Neither just a simple adaptation of Lang's classic nor a typical techno-fetischistic epic. In its way unique. Just get it.


Mills' attempt to compose a soundtrack for Fritz Lang's monsterclassic 'Metropolis'. A Tresor release.

While some of it sounds really awkward and occasionally pompous (the ambient parts, at least), it has its good moments. There were two 12"s out of it, I think; I also remember him performing by playing on top of a cut-up video version of the original, which I considered to be at least ill-advised, but then he revisited this idea with 'Three Ages' (*).

Sometimes it's the thought that counts.

More of him here.

Jeff Mills - 2000 Metropolis
Info here.

Flux Trax

A very handy compilation of late '80s and early '90s tracks I used to always carry with me wherever I played. No rare tracks in here; still it had proved to be so helpful that even though I eventually bought some of the original 12"s (for a lot of money, concerning their shape and condition...), a couple of years ago I tracked down and bought the 4LP version as well, just for the convenience of having so many classics in a pack.

VA - 1995 Flux Trax
CD1 - CD2

Info here.

There was a Vol. 2 released later I once encountered but passed by; sounded too trancey for me at the time.


OK, I bought this one for the track with Tikiman and that's the main reason why I post it, but the rest of the album is also good. PFL also did an album for Electrolux (which I'm going to have in a few days) and that should give you a hint on their sound , for about half of the tracks. Their other side is dubby and heavier than you'd except. Out through (now defunkt) Different Drummer.

Pre Fade Listening - 2000 Solarized
Info here.


I always thought Patrick Dubois and Isoghi label were french; turned out they actually are Daniel Erbe and from Madrid respectively. Looking back at the time, sounds more like it; this combination of not-so-glossy production, arp electro elements and slightly house-tinted techno points more towards Spain's tendencies of the time than France, where parallels can be found mostly in the Grenoble scene (Kiko, Oxia, The Hacker, etc), almost always in a harder, more EBM-ish context.

Anyway, Isoghi's swan song is a rather listening oriented, retro sounding electro techno album, full of sweet synths and soft beats and melancholy; now than I listen to it again, sounds very similar to FPU's 'Traxxdata' (posted here). Personal favorites are 'Open Air' and the epic 'Isoghi' track, borrowing a sample from the Ghost In The Shell's spine-chilling theme (*,*); I remember playing it to death back then, in its Oxia-like 12'' clubby version.

Patrick Dubois - 2002 Today
Info here.


This is the first Floppy Sounds (*) album; not the original Wave Music version, but the Slip 'n' Slide repress with an bonus CD of extra tracks, re-edits and remixes (by Francois K. and Matthias Heilbronn).

I just bought it so I don't have an opinion yet. At first skip, it sounds similar to the already posted one, perhaps a bit more primitive; more abstract and downtempo tracks in here, also.

Floppy Sounds - 1995 Downtime
CD1 - CD2
Info here.

Coffee Shop Rules

Noted on the cover simply as MFA (not to be confused with Border Community's The MFA), the Midnight Funk Association actually are Mark Broom and Dave Hill (*), techno veterans that made their fame through releases in a number of serious UK tech labels through the '90s.

But this one' went out through Domino. Here they lay their weapons down and explore downtempo territories, in a dopey mix of electro and post hip-hop breaks. Against the norms of the genre, the production is balanced and crispy (no dub treatments in here) and tracks are too repetitive, while moods change a lot; some times relaxed, some times nervous, occasionally slightly freaked. Too much THC in their skank, I guess... A weird album. You have to be in the mood for this.

Midnight Funk Association - 2002 Coffee Shop Rules
Info here.