Release Date: Apr 29, 2016
Record label: Pampa
By their nature, label compilations don’t always feature the very best that every artist has to offer. It says everything about the esteem in which Koze is held, then, that almost every artist on ‘Pampa Vol 1’ brings their A-game.Opening with Matthew Herbert’s soul-fuelled remix of ‘Lost & Found’ by Lianne La Havas, it sets its stall from the get-go. Axel Boman’s ‘In The Dust Of This Planet’ is a haunting electronic piano piece, Michel Cleis offers a deft instrumental that Air would be proud of and Roman Flügel’s masterful ‘9 Years’ finally sees the light of day, both as an original and with a new mix from Koze.
Pampa has spent the last seven years curating one of the most distinctively oddball house catalogs, which means its first compilation, a 19-track collection of exclusives, might seem daunting at first. But DJ Koze and Marcus Fink are savvy with selecting artists who can surprise and satisfy fans of their label's buoyant and off-kilter dance music. Label favorites like Ada and Die Vögel join new additions like Jamie xx and Gold Panda on DJ Koze Presents Pampa Vol.
In its seven years of existence, Stefan Kozalla and Marcus Fink’s Pampa Records label has been defined by its stance against purism. The techno and house artists featured by the German label, from DJ Koze himself to the underground king Isolée, from the madcap experimentalist Roman Flügel to the fan-favorite Dntel, shun conventional genre wisdom and of-the-moment sounds, instead favoring an approach wrapped in humor, warmth, and the pleasure of small surprises. “All the best things happen from mistakes,” Koze told Pitchfork three years ago, in a statement representative of the spontaneity that he’s embraced in heading up the imprint.
The brand of slumbering house into which DJ Koze's work to date often falls is characterized by cushioned sonic tracts where instruments fizzle with soft intensity. This new compilation from Pampa Records, which Koze runs alongside Marcus bears the faded watermark of his narcoleptic influence. Vol.1 is a thoroughly pleasant listen, peppered with gently euphoric melodic tendencies and crisp, understated percussion.The comp reflects the unpredictability borne of being in an unconscious state, nicely bridging moods between certain songs while, occasionally, offering a reflection of the disorienting sudden shifts dreams often take.