Friday 31 August 2012

Barbara Morgenstern - Sweet Silence

Single review by KevW

Berlin's Barbara Morgenstern has been continuing the mighty work done by German electronic pioneers for the course of seven albums now. The latest of these being this summer's 'Sweet Silence'. New single (and the album's title track) is being released with an accompanying video ahead of a remix album 'Silence Sweater' at the start of October. While it'll be great to see what other interpretations of her work will sound like, it's worth concentrating on the originals for now, because despite being an innovator and a pioneer, Morgenstern is hardly a household name in the UK. This is somewhat unfortunate and quite baffling as she manoeuvres her experimental works around similar fields to those ploughed by more acclaimed artists such as The Knife and Bjork, and with a little extra coverage or a breakthrough song she could become as revered and well known as that pair.

It's improbable that 'Sweet Silence' will be that track as it's unlikely to become a staple on Radio 1 or MTV (who don't even bother showing any music nowadays anyway). These off-kilter beats and spooky, bubbling synths come at you like a less commercial Goldfrapp, but where Morgenstern differs is when it comes to the big radio-friendly chorus. Rather than bolting on a memorable hook she, wisely, chooses to stick to what she does best. And that's eclectic and inventive electronic pop music with depth and that doesn't compromise its integrity. The cloppy beats and synth bursts aren't likely to set the clubs alight either, but with credibility and vision, she manages to make unique sounds all of her own without considering selling out. You just know she could write a pop banger if she wanted, but that doesn't seem to be in her nature. Maybe in years to come Morgenstern's name will be mentioned in the same breath as these revered pioneers of 70s Berlin.

Barbara Morgenstern's website

Buy the album

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