Can Machines Make Love?

Artist: Pole
Album: Steingarten
Label: ~scape

Berlin producer Stefan Betke kicks the dub dancefloor up a notch with his latest full-length, emerging after a four-year hiatus since he released his self-titled album in 2003. This is his second long-player for his own ~scape label (R was released in 2001) and his welcome back after a year-long run on Mute records. Those of you bored by the dubstep and minimal dub scenes take note. Here, Betke departs further from the sparse crackles and dark thumps of his earlier work and the hip hop flirtation on his last album, now focusing more on sonic saturation and deep beat techniques. Distortion, hollow clicks, and static flashes are inter-woven among the booty-moving low end, transcending the typical minimal dub landscapes in a building wash of meticulous electronic tweaks, breaking through to something higher entirely. The mood is gentle and soothing, but still showcases enough awe-worthy bomb-drops to inspire entrancing dances. Down and dirty robot slow jams for love-making in the digital future, machine easy listening that still manages to warm even the coldest of cyborg hearts. The arrangements are pristine, brimming with bleeps and tinkles that float downstream on euphoric fuzz undercurrents and fluorescent pulses. Even Terminator’s showing off his new dance moves, and he’s looking to get laid.

-Cole-