Shed | Oderbruch |Ostgut Ton
Release Date: 29 November, 2019
Feature Image: Shed by Rian Davidson
As we grow up and watch the world change around us, we witness a shift in human evolution; our environments are sculpted in increments, the landscapes around us transformed by eager palms as we look toward the future – invention, industry, politics, the economy – and the music which reflects it. In our early lives we watch history unfold into the present; sitting within us as our perceptions change, and the nostalgia of our growth is written into something more universal and expressed in our art.
“What is the search for places that bind you? To remember.– Shed / René Pawlowitz
You feel where you feel comfortable. Those who confirm their own existence. This, my place is the Oderbruch. This place is dedicated to this work. “
For Berlin-based musician René Pawlowitz, the art of capturing narrative within dance music (specifically, the intricacies of techno) comes with the craftsmanship it requires; yet for him, the focus presents stories personal and intimate – recounting the experiences that shaped his youth, as well as a reflection of his German heritage. Pawlowitz grew up in Schwedt, a city located near the Oder River which sits close to the border between Germany and Poland.
(Historically the region holds great significance, as 1939 saw a German advance not too far from the location into Poland, with the invasion triggering World War II.)
The 1990’s saw a significant change in history as Pawlowitz discovered his passion for techno not long after the fall of the Berlin Wall; and throughout the years, under a myriad of different monikers, he explored his love for the rave scene and techno. He released his debut LP ‘Shedding The Past’ in 2010, cementing his most recent moniker – Shed, returning with his fifth LP ‘Oderbruch’ – a reflection of the heritage he holds close, while remaining just as innovative – a significant influence in the electronic music world.
The lush ebb & flow of ‘Die Oder’ mimics the river after which the track is named; rippling percussion gliding between ambient currents, effortlessly flowing through a tranquil soundscape. Lyrical electronic textures conjure images of emerald foliage lining the riverbed, chiming softly as the sweeping deep blue tempo undulates; soothing yet focused in it’s progression.
‘Sterbende Alleen’ opens with the ambience of an artificial forest; synth swells and a quietly distorted atmosphere gleams with a reminiscence of a natural landscape teeming with life. A wistful melody brimming with nostalgia seeps within the rise and fall of layered swells. A tender melancholy peeks through the walls of sound, as they morph into self-assured drum & bass – expressive and rhythmic; tinted with a lucid and thoughtful tone.
The striking darkness of the opening beat in ‘Seelower Höhen’ encompasses a bold, dark techno; a driving characteristic that torrents throughout the track, acting as a racing heartbeat beneath the studs of textural electronics, grasping an underlying urgency. ‘Seelower Höhen’ encompasses it’s namesake in an auditory realm – in English, The Battle of Seelow Heights was one of the last offensive operations by the Soviets in 1945 – bordering the Oder River; right before The Battle of Berlin and subsequent ending of the 2nd World War.
Pawlowitz‘ skillful crafting of intricate layers of sounds and textures into a polished package demonstrates his continued ability to construct clearly defined and experimental techno; blooming with a personal narrative, which is naturally enmeshed within ‘Oderbruch’s entire character.