Review: The Bahnsteig 23 crew are flying towards the end of the year with a salvo of essential wares from their established crew and new faces alike. Sweden's Albion Venables has been doing the business on labels such as Ambassador's Reception and Macadam Mambo for the past seven years, and his first turn on Bahnsteig doesn't disappoint. In a flurry of eclecticism, the mood veers from the bubbling kosmische tones of "En Trance" through to the schlocky funk of "Schwarzen Mer", mixing live band dynamics with quirky electronics and keeping the groove delightfully authentic. The diversity maintains on the flip as "City People" taps up a moody New York flavour and "Die Marinette Der Zeit" strikes a more classic funk note.
Review: Swedish producer Albion Venables has been building up a formidable bank of oddball disco, boogie, wave and other groove-oriented delights on labels like Ambassador's Reception, Macadam Mambo and People Must Jam. After first appearing on the ever-excellent Bahnsteig 23 in 2016, he's back on the label with some more head-spinning obscurities from the outside tracks of synth music. "Poupee Mecanique" is a jovial French bopper, while "Balearo" cuts a more organic, reclining figure with its chugging bass plucks, laconic guitar and dreamy keys. "In Coherence" channels some funky AOR sass, and "OVNI" heads into heavy prog funk territory, rounding out a veritable wild card of a record.
Review: After coming to light with his crucial edits on Les Edits Du Golem, Alexis Le-Tan has gone on to become one of the shining lights on Bahnsteig 23's roster of deviant discoid dissenters, and he's burning up as he comes careering onto the label's 45th release. "Agre" is a steroid-injected blast of 80s firepower, all stomping drums and a dazzling assortment of dancefloor-engineered synth parts. "Pune" is a slower, groovier jam but it's no less striking in its make-up. "Hubli" takes a more unusual path away from the party, into a hard to define zone somewhere between soundtrack, home listening jam and un-nerving warm up-not warm up. "Kulem" finishes the EP off on a more steady tone, but still the rich, glossy production details come spilling out of this bombastic jam just like the other tracks on this loud and proud record.
Review: BAH040 is the first time out for Caissard DJ, not that you'd know on the basis of this plush, accomplished romp through 80s island boogie that chimes perfectly with the Bahnsteig 23 vibe. "Bright Dance" is a noirish smorgasbord of crystalline melodies and good, honest synth-pop thrust, while "Market Anthem" switches things up with a new wave twist. "La x5" is a wonderful curio, all stuttering, borderline baroque tones and Eastern string histrionics. The "Melange Dub" of "Arrakis" is a wild soul trying to be tamed by the machines, and then "Demo-cracy" dips into an almost minimal wave pulse before "The God Emperor" finishes the eclectic ride with ethnic chimes and percussion filtered through a grainy medium.
Review: Surely the freakiest house party in town, Bahnsteig 23 is the gift that keeps on giving. The relentless release schedule keeps up right here with this unmissable missive from Cherrystones, a learned selector and all round sonic oracle who regularly rubs shoulders with Andy Votel and that ilk of muso's muso. As you'd expect there's a rich spread of vibes on offer here, from the Afro-disco rub down "Simba Dub" to the Eastern psych lilt of "Belly King". "ExOhSkeletons" brings out some gutter punk styles and loops them into a strangely hypnotic form, and "Topical Meat Wave" imparts some pan-seared drama onto a French disco-funk. "KonGkinG" is a shouty new wave funker, and then the record wobbles out on a suitably deep B3 cut for the weirdos, all Oizo-esque synth blurts and sloppy live drum grooves.
Review: Thomas Smorek, aka Dunkeltier, was last seen lurking on Bahnsteig 23 back in 2015, and now he's back under a fog of VHS fuzz with madcap sampling and off-kilter disco freakiness in abundance for all the freaky dancers. "Arcade" has a motorik pulse to it, and one of the best warbling bell chime sounds we've heard in a long time. It's a creepy, but deceptively funky beast. "Arabian Town" is a more post punk flavoured cut with raw live instrumentation and vocals that seem to channel Joy Division, Siouxsie & The Banshees and The Cramps in the same breath. "Ce Soir" is a synth heavy affair purpose built to disorientate and disturb, while "The Blade" brings a stomping industrial death march mixed with twanging psych guitar ramblings. Yet more distinctive heat from the Bahnsteig crew then.
Review: In the space of a year Bahnsteig 23 has positioned itself as a label of note with a strong run of 12"s that draw on a rich spread of influences from cosmic disco to world music to provide a little more spice in your dancefloor selections. Portland's Elliot Thomas takes his Etbonz alias out for its first proper outing here after a split 7" with Dro Carey some years back. This single-sided jam serves to raise the intrigue around the project further still with its dense, organically enhanced production and dreamy atmosphere, keeping the tempo slow and simmering for the early part of the party.
Review: Franz Scala was last spotted on Boredllo A Parigi back in 2016 - he makes the move to Bahnsteig 23 for this bold record of synth pop, early electro and much more besides. "Anacondas" has a cheery tone, all sunny synth lines and a laid back boogie rhythm section, while "Thai City" is more like a scratchy beat track for DJs to get clever with. "Shadow Dancer" is one of the record's stand out moments - a muscular pop burner for all 80s romancers to get emotional and funky to. "Rascals" finishes the EP off with some seriously tough drums and some body-popping electro styles that should go down a storm on the floor.
Review: Horton Jupiter has been skirting around various cosmically-inclined outfits for many years now, but this release marks his first outright solo venture, and where better for it to blast off from than the celestial circus sideshow of Bahnsteig 23? The record launches in a fit of kosmische bravado, all nagging arpeggios, warbling leads, sustained guitars and a healthy dose of drama. "Eclectic Day" is certainly a fitting title. "Smokin' The Roach" is an equally bombastic affair, although with a chirpier disposition and some Italian-sounding vocals, and then "The Box" finishes the EP off with a grungy trip through bongo beatdowns and fuzz guitar for those who like their psych music with a vintage twist.
Review: Jonny 5 can rightly be considered a mainstay of Bahnsteig 23 now, as he returns to the label for the third time. It seems that the main source of inspiration for this latest opus from the intermittent producer has been the Indian sub continent, and he's channeled those vibes into three wild and wicked tracks for the weird dance party. "Bengali Dub" channels the proto electro vibes of 80s synth pop and shoots it through with some illustrious sample drops, while "Simha" works more like a particularly bold edit loping in a polyrhythmic fashion that will have the floor hopping like mad to keep up. "Tum Tum" turns up the heat on the B side with a deadly electronic revision of an Indian classic.
Review: REPRESS ALERT: Etwas stirs in die Ostlich. Edits and verks of twist sounds. Synth pop, cold wave, neu wave, minimal wave, industrial, neu beat, soundtracks and a selbst Balearen. Freiheit! Als erstes is hero of old Cybernetic Broadcast (CBS) and (Intergalatic FM) radio. Jonny 5 and his verstorbenen Blindsign blog and mixes were a steigen'n'steigen to rescue us from boring neu disco. Schieben his search and discovery for harder, but musical soundscapes. 4 edits is a geschmack. Start brave on the floor feel with the Neu Beut Euro Pop thumper Kaka Kaka. Geschleift, verdreht thoughts. Black Hole is hours spent in Eastern Bloc basements graben in the search for drahts. Stoned indeed, immaculate synth electronic battle cruiser, hart percussion, cut gesang and break. Ready for the percussive finale in Horizon's Change. Was Auch Immer. Bahnsteig!
Review: It's may seem that deviant disco champs par excellence Bahnsteig 23 are already toasting to their 50th release, but in truth their catalogue started at 23 so don't be fooled. Instead, just feast on another salvo of seedy body music from Ziggy, which leads in with the synth-soaked pump and thrust of "Trance Gigolo" before switching to the sassy 80s funk of "Yo Let Her". Things are just as cool and deadly on the flip as the slap bass electro meanderings of "Amfobia" brew up a post-punk disco delight with a schlocky horror twist, and "Freaky Leaches" leaves things on an ominous note via a swampy trip through the mangroves with only a steady ticking rhythm section for company.