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Existenz

1LP
$45.98
Four LP version. Gatefold sleeve; includes six-page insert, an engraved side, and download code. Function's long career has seen him uncover a vast range of sonic identities, a mainstay through house, techno and industrial with collaborations with the likes of Regis, Damon Wild, alongside his highly influential Infrastructure imprint. With influences deeply tied to pop art, rave, and gay scenes, and early memories of block-parties emitting Kraftwerk and Strafe, he found himself seeking out the undercover illegal nights of the '90s on a quest of sexual unearthing, mixing the ever-yearning escapology mission of disco with the influential DJ sets of Jeff Mills. For his new album Existenz, he marks a clear step away from the corporeal techno of his recent releases. Pivoting around themes of religion, sexuality, trauma, and healing, it is a work expansive and celebratory, a clear liberation from a deeply internalized past. Formed from a collection of recordings made in a period from late 2016 to mid-2019, Existenz takes the form of a creative outburst in reaction to a number of traumas. Life partner Stefanie Parnow assisted the production process in it's entirety, providing inspiration, spiritual healing, and featuring vocal contributions. Cosmic synths soar and swoop in "Pleasure Discipline" through towering stacks of rhythm that stutter and creak to a halt before rebooting, a firm robotic response to human intervention. "Zahlensender" reflects a spatial Tetris of urban life, as digitalization set within an XYZ matrix confronts the sprawling city. "The Approach" recalls the unification of the self, a state of delirium non-subjective and smooth, as all connections and functions give way to simple intensities of feeling, crossing the threshold into spirituality. "Golden Dawn", featuring Stefanie Parnow, marks a further elevation of dubbed-out euphoria. His ode to the effortless short-trip urban navigation "Kurzstrecke" finds Function in motion, upfront, and bold, snapshots of conversation and flickers of light. "Ertrinken" finds metallic bass jabs swamping snipped synthetic voices, with hidden stores of emotion set as a nod to the history of vocoders as a tool for encrypted military communication. House icon Robert Owens features on "Growth Cycle" and "Be", entrenching a celebratory atmosphere over Function's clubwise leanings. "Downtown 161" reflects the unmistakable filtered and squashed interjections of television, and sampled dance vocals - a sound for the curious, dreamers and dancers. With Existenz, Function reveals an essential body of work - thought experiments on the role of identity and spirituality after a lifetime of upheaval and trauma.
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