COLOGNE’S Urlaub in Polen – the new wave-tronica duo of singer George Brenner and drummer Jan Philipp Janzen – have been away from our turntables for almost a decade now.
In fact it’s nine years since they released album no.5, Boldstriker, and promptly announced it was all over.
But the giddy wheel of time shifteth and progressing through the greyness of 2020 it appeared the stars had aligned favourably once more – and so the pair returned to the studio, liked what they found there in the creative electricity between themselves, and put together All, their sixth studio album since first hitting the racks in 2002.
They’ve given Backseat Mafia an exclusive reveal on the video for the first track leading the album, “Impulse Response”.
And no mere reunion this, no treading of past glories; take a listen to the off-kilter, low-slung, driving groove of “Impulse Response” in the video we’ve embedded below.
Choppy guitars riff up in a fine new wave style; voices are robotically filtered in the best Kraftwerk tradition. It’s a fine pop tune, in one sense; it’s also entirely subversive and sliding along through the shadows. And what narrative are we to build from that video, all found stop-motion scurrying and a Max Headroom aesthetic?
The band say: “‘Impulse Response’ is the last song we wrote and recorded for the album.
“It’s based on a beat from Philipp someone called ‘teutonic’. This groove is combined with super-steady guitar patterns and a extreme, dramatic, vocoder voice from Georg: excellent ingredients for an instant modern classic. Enjoy!”
The album, All, promises ” … an architecture evoking Krautrock, developing sprawling synthesizer and guitar workouts … the echoes of West Coast pop, of Rhineland tech-house”. Now there’s an intriguing stew for all lovers of the Deutsche musik.
Urlaub in Polen’s All will be released by Tapete Records on November 6th; it’s already available for pre-order, here.