By Max Foley
Moderat’s tumultuous path to maturity embodies the archetypal hero’s journey, brought to life by the genre-bending earworms of Modeselektor and the aurally conscious crooning of Apparat. The trio’s illustrious catalogue has only grown more refined and dialed-in with the passage of time, defying a creative process rife with conflict. III represents Moderat’s crossing over into adulthood. After a history of creative competition, III is arguably what they’ve been striving for this whole time.
The unlikely ubergroup’s latest offering is the most elegant pairing of their respective talents yet, a multi-genre Saharan dreamscape. Apparat’s uniquely hypnotizing vocals are no longer conspicuously absent from more complex instrumental works; he is featured on all of the album’s offerings except two – the wonderfully haunting, urgent combination of footwork and glitch that is “Animal Trails” and the comparatively bouncy and optimistic “Finder.”
Modeselektor’s eloquently stripped-back, yet complex, sonic panorama paves the way for Apparat’s most loquacious lamentations yet. “Eating Hooks” enraptures the listener early with enticing, buttery garage cuts and soul-soothing vocals; flagship single “Reminder” serves as a microcosm of the creative process behind III; the monkish intonations of “Intruder” are punctuated by crystalline synths and tantalizing drum work.
III is an incredibly approachable foray into electronic music; passing it by because ‘electronic isn’t your thing’ would be a big mistake. Do yourself a favour.III, Moderat