Modeselektion Vol. 04: a fascinating, moving compendium of electronic music (4 stars)

Modeselektion Vol. 04 is a fascinating, moving compendium of electronic music

Berlin-based duo Modeselektor release their first record in three years and are back with their usual high standards

It wouldn't be a leap to call the Berlin-based duo Modeselektor completely brilliant. Through their label Monkeytown Records, and their own musical output over the last couple of decades, the pair have helped shape the landscape of electronic music. With this fourth volume in their compilation series, Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary show their continued ability to play with genre. Here they combine some of the greatest established artists and rising stars in a single dance record (well four 12 inch vinyls, if you're buying the hard copy).

Modeselektion Vol. 04 manages to take the listener to dark sweaty rooms underneath concrete city streets, at times – and to euphoric, packed tents in sunny fields, at others. With selections from artists such as Actress, Lone, rRoxymore and Glasgow's own Solid Blake, the overall effect is a wonderful journey through tempo and mood.

Lone's 'Smoke Signals' is a real stand-out, boasting a dance floor-filling techno melody and – ending with a Four-Tet, 'Love Cry'-esque, infectious rhythm. The Nottingham artist has been releasing music since 2007, and this contribution is a real success.

Another highlight is the playful warmth of Actress' track 'Watercolour Challenge'. Reminiscent of the video game joyfulness of some old Crystal Castles' tracks, this is far removed from some of the more agitated moments on the artist's 2014 EP 'Ghettoville'.

Modeselektor's contribution is their first release in three years, and it's a high-tempo, earthy, track which carries the listener upwards into a floating, emotive technological crescendo. A truly powerful musical moment, 'Kalif Storch' shows the pair are back with the same high standards of their past.

Overall, there is a confident unifying pulse through this rewarding collage of noise, melody and rhythm. Tracks move from dense and highly layered sonics, to mesmerisingly crisp, simple breaks. The album is a hybrid of genre which is rewarding of patience. The duo say the compilation was influenced by their 'thirst for effective dance music', and the result is a definite triumph.

Out now on Records / Ninja Tune

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