WITH last year’s excellent, enveloping album Fading under his belt, Berlin’s legendary sonic master Stefan Betke, aka Pole, has just dropped a new track, “Rost”, which is taken from a 12″ forthcoming for Mute in August, Tanzboden.
Stripped back to a neo-industrial essence, “Rost” circles forward on a mazey, cyclical twining of tones, gently mantric, with that classically Pole attention to the microscopic glitter of the percussion, a wheezing cymbal and kickdrum cluster the main engine of the track; synths wash, there’s ambient breakdowns, and before you know it “Rost” has fully embedded itself as an Ohrwurm for your day, your small physical actions as you go about your business bending and submitting to its quiet rhythmic demands.
“Rost” has its genesis in a series of loops created during the recording sessions for Fading, his first new album for Mute in more than a decade and a half, released November gone; an album we noted as being “…a palimpsest, Stefan writing over and erasing, finessing and revisiting all the Poles which make up Pole … an album you reach inside, as if noticing some element of sound glittering like a necklace hanging from a branch just off the beaten track; pursue that beckoning glimmer in and let Fading fold its lushness around you.” (Read our full review, here).
That album was predicated on the concepts of loss of memory and how memory disappears over the years as we grow older, and these loops were discovered when Stefan returned to the original recordings.
He explains: “I began working in my Berlin studio, doing research and listening to the single recording sessions of Fading to remember what I did exactly and to find out what I think about the recording months after finishing it.
“Tanzboden is an old-fashioned word for a dancefloor constructed during harvest time, mostly outdoors, and “Rost” is the German word for rust – an interesting connection to Tanzboden.
“If the dancefloor is not really used for a long time anymore it starts to rust, and as the screws and metal plates which are holding the wooden parts together disappear slowly over the years, so does the Tanzboden itself.”
The two tracks on the new 12″ both link back to Fading and also, necessarily, begin to plot the next developments in the Pole story.
“Listening to them with a new album in mind, I liked them even better!”, Stefan concludes.
Pole’s Tanzboden will be released on 12″ on August 13th and is available to order now, here.