DELTA FUNKTIONEN - Traces
18 June 2012
The debut album of Amsterdam’s Niels Luinenburg, released on Delsin Records, from where the artist has released numerous EPs and mix compilations for offshoot labels.
The driving force behind Delta Funktionen’s sound is classic techno with electro overspills seeping throughout the nine, lengthy tracks on offer. The first problem one encounters, however, is how Luinenburg fails to develop his music throughout those lengthy tracks. The opening Frozen Land is a dismal exercise in repetition, merely rephrasing the track’s initial electronic refrains from the first minute to the last.
This is a problem that haunts Traces throughout. The music consists of slim, reedy techno beats, arpeggiated synth patterns and numerous layered synth - with the occasional 303 bubbling its way into the mix, but once a track has started to develop into a rhythm, it simply repeats itself ad nauseam to its close.
Having said that, it’s not all bad – the atmospheric Utopia changes the scenery with its high-pitched melodies splayed over technoid percussion; likewise the creepy Challenger with its tinny beats and dark, melancholy keys deliver a brooding menace – despite the concept similarly beset by the album’s craving for repetition.
The album closes with
perhaps its best track, the more expansive On a Distant Journey, which
features a more colourful spectrum of sounds and takes time to delve into
itself, changing pace and structure yet evolving naturally. If only Luinenberg
had been as experimental and willing to deviate on the rest of the album.