Inhalt: Part Time Punks Sessions (Cleopatra, 2017)

May 5, 2017 at 10:44 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Inhalt: Part Time Punks Sessions

San Francisco’s Inhalt released two EPs on Dark Entries a few years back, as well as some remix 12″s. This is their first album, and it basically contains all of the same songs as the EPs (B-side of the first EP, as far as I could tell, sounded like instrumentals of the A-side). Most of the tracks were actually recorded live (in studio) directly to 24 track tape, for an L.A. radio show called Part Time Punks, and they sound remarkably crisp, clear, and polished. More than most minimal wave acts these days, this sounds a lot like German new wave acts like D.A.F. At some points, maybe, just maybe, it sounds like a bleaker Kraftwerk. No guitars, all synths and vocals, which are mostly in German (although “Programming” is in French, and also has some vocoders, and there’s some English vocals elsewhere). Tracks range from urgent synth-pop songs (“Black Sun”, “Vehicle”) to atmospheric spoken word (“Noise”) to a droning, buzzing intro (“Aphonia”). Even if most of the songs have been released before, they all fit together as a coherent album, and it’s a handy summation of the group for anyone who hasn’t heard them before. Available on their Bandcamp page.

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