Release Date: Mar 22, 2019
Record label: Mute
Genre(s): Electronic, Techno, Pop/Rock, Indie Electronic, Experimental Techno, IDM
The latest LP released under this appellation, named simply LP5, is an album defined by restraint, a neat ticking clock wound to near-perfection which sees the German musician leap nimbly between moments of melancholic clarity and triumphant grandeur. Tracks like "VOI_DO" and "LAMINAR FLOW" outline the duality between these modes, undulating steadily between an ambient introduction and the heartfelt melodic composition of their conclusion. Each of the tracks build to a weighty and satisfying conclusion in which Ring's vocal accompaniment wails hesitantly above whilst the song beneath oscillates under the effect of stabbing electronic interjections and expansive reverb.
Sascha Ring is a man on a multifarious mission. His work as Apparat, as well as Moderat with Modeselektor's Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary, has seen him placed squarely at the forefront of the forward trajectory of German dance music in the last decade or so, as it has moved into more ambient, emotionally driven and "challenging" territory. Moderat can be seen as Ring's more secure day job, with its focus being on aiming the majority of their work at the chin strokingly cognizant dance crowd, whereas Apparat has always felt like something more akin to a passion, as Ring allows himself to explore areas of self-interest rather than deliver a recognisable brand to the audience.
Stepping away from his Moderat collaboration with fellow Germans Modeselektor, Sascha Ring returns after six years with a new album under his Apparat guise. Again, he provides another otherworldly blend of deep orchestration, post-rock echoes, and techno-informed pop. Album opener "VOI_DO" glimmers into life with echoes of Talk Talk's introspective and expansive later works before setting into the emotive, melodic vocal electronica that Apparat has near perfected.
After Moderat announced their indefinite hiatus in 2017, Sascha Ring went back to his solo career as Apparat. LP5 is the follow-up to 2011's The Devil's Walk, Ring's most song-oriented solo work, rather than the last album to bear Apparat's name, 2013's more challenging Krieg und Frieden (Music for Theatre). The title of LP5 ostensibly nods to Autechre's 1998 full-length, which it doesn't resemble in the slightest.