German DJ Helena Hauff and ‘Return to Disorder’ label owner was the first female to be named BBC Radio 1’s Essential Mix of the year in 2017. Helena’s focus has always been on productions and DJing making her characteristic gnashing electro, acidic techno and chugging EBM tunes and sets her focus ahead of the limelight and fame that so many court. Hauff’s background comes from fine art, maths, physics and acoustics meaning her creative flair is perfectly expressed through the coaxing of weighty club sounds from her machines. With ‘Living With Ladybirds’ Hauff lays down four EBM-infused tracks recorded in her method of using strictly analogue equipment. There’s the eccentric electro of ‘Jonas’, the travelling melody behind ‘Your Turn To Fly’, the stripped down pulsing techno of ‘Touching Plastic’ and the rich rolling acid techno of ‘Pinch’.
Since 1991, Tresor has provided a home for artists to germinate their ideas for advanced new sounds and broadcast them to the world. The pioneers that first traversed the Detroit-Berlin connection and were at the forefront of a new cultural movement gave to Tresor its original and continuing mission: community, resistance and reshaping the world to come. The Tresor 30 compilation represents a major land- mark in this continuing history of electronic music. This unique collection of music profiles some of the artists that gave the previous three decades of Tresor its sound and foundation, but it also casts its gaze forward. Writing new postcards from the future, this collection brings new artists who main- tain a connection to that original mission to the fore, charting ways in which this ethos can contin- ue to build bridges and break walls in the next 30 years. Bringing together 52 essential tracks – both clas- sics and exclusive commissions – each of the 12 records in this box-set charts a unique line of flight from those artists that helped define the shape of this new music to those who continue to pattern its landscape further.
The Exaltics invites Helena Hauff for a collaboration on Solar One Music. A1 starts with a short eerie intro and after that they come straight to the point with an UFO electro techno stomper with vocals from Helena. The flip side is floating around with alot of echoes and delays melodies and 303s, Helena’s beautiful voice and this special old school feeling.
From time to time I like to take a brief look at what our readers enjoyed the most and the end of the year is always a good time to do so. In order to do this I compile a top 3 of the most appreciated albums, compilations, mixes our readers liked in the last year.
As a cover for this year’s post I choose a map showing from where our visitors come and the first 10 places are the US, Germany, Romania, UK, Ukraine, The Netherlands, Spain, France, Russia and Italy.
Switching within digital binaries, analogue flux, and all forms of degradation in between, a creature is kickstarted to life, as if awoken with locomotion’s full might. Helena Hauff delivers a mix for Tresor’s Kern series, lashing together a sound world with a potent barrage of industrial dance music. Helena Hauff and Morah, Umwelt, Machino, Galaxian and L.F.T. all contribute with five previously unreleased tracks, exclusive to the compilation. Rare titles are also featured, such as the late Curley Schoop’s “Mayhem” under the name Esoterik, “City Of Boom” by DJ Godfather & DJ Starski, Nasenbluten’s “Intellectual Killer“ and “After Dark” produced collaboratively by Andrea Parker and David Morley.
First full EP by Helena Hauff on Return To Disorder. Electro stuff, s alright, nothing more to say really.
Qualm has a duality that Helena Hauff enjoys – The German word translates as fumes or smoke, whilst the English meaning refers to an uneasy feeling of doubt, worry, or fear, especially about one’s own conduct. True to form, the record is unapologetically raw and finds Helena returning to her original modus operandi – jamming on her machines, trying to create something powerful without using too many instruments and layers. By design, the 12 tracks are raw, distorted and lo-fi, with Hauff peppering heavyweight, redlined drum machine beats – think wayward Chicago jack, laidback electro and nails techno – with a mixture of razor-sharp acid lines, moody industrial textures and drowsy chords. The clattering intensity of the album’s dancefloor moments is in sharp contrast to the creepy and evocative, soundtrack style electronic soundscapes showcased elsewhere on the album. These – ambient in ethos, but more experimental in tone – are frequently amongst the set’s most inspired moments.
L.F.T., Marc Ash, Morah and Helena Hauff are combining forces to pollute the world with a little bit more banging industrial techno on the latest Return To Disorder release.
We are taking a week off and escaping the cold Romanian weather to enjoy the warm climate of the Middle East. We will do some travelling around Israel and Palestine (the West Bank), visiting some remote locations, the Dead Sea, the desert and also cities.
Analogical Force drops the third and last part in the voiceless series taking no prisoners. For this EP AF mastermind Pervert has teamed up with incendiary friends to deliver a must for the collectors of the label. Heavy line up that includes the Hamburg’s well respected Helena Hauff, Zurich’s acid lover CCO (50% of Savage Grounds), the legendary UK techno imprint B12, Canada’s Suction Records co-funder Lowfish and Utrecht based Endfest. Stunning 5-track record with loads of acid-drenched techno, super wide basslines, melancholic pads, slamming 808’s…enough to fill brains as well as floors. This release is dedicated to Rhys Celeste.
Dark Entries present ‘A Tape’, a double LP of early work by Helena Hauff. ‘A Tape’ is a compilation of Helena’s earliest recordings from 2011 and 2014, originally released on limited cassette by Handmade Birds in 2015. Clocking in at over 50 minutes, this collection spans Hauff’s musical universe, from jacking acid-techno to krautish zone-outs and scuzzy feedback interludes. It’s tempting to consider it Helena’s debut album, but she views these tracks as mostly forgotten sketches left on the cutting room floor. It a gripping collection of deep, sinister analog synth sequences, industrial dissonance, and heavy percussion. Her equipment set up was a Roland Alpha Juno 2, Juno 60, TB-303, TR-707 and TR-808. Both of the discs end with Hauff stepping outside of the intentionally stiff, robotic rhythms, instead showing her skill at crafting less conventional electronic sounds.
Driven by the common 80’s DIY-attitude, the 4th Is The Way release happens to be a cooperation for an absolute one-side vinyl, Shinoby vs Hypnobeat (James Dean Brown + Helena Hauff). The one-track (9:19min) is rooted in the concept of a ‘neo-tribal’ approach; compressing electronics into an emotional, hypnotic and rhythmic core. The energy and the emotional impact of polyrhythms and the track turned out to be centered around the inimitable sound of the Roland TR-808 plus a wide range of analogues gear including up to eight synchronized rhythm machines
Following the recent release of So Low, a compilation of early ‘80s synth, industrial and cold wave classics and undiscovered gems curated by Optimo’s JD Twitch aka Keith McIvor, The Vinyl Factory are set to release specially commissioned remixes of two tracks on the 16-track compilation by rising UK producer Powell and Hamburg’s Helena Hauff.
Signs of Decay: Acid Compilation with dirty and hard acid cuts by Ekman, The Exaltics, Helena Hauff, Perseus Traxx, Drvg Cvltvre and a artwork made by Godspill. A powerful collective statement on the desiccation some “hard and dirty acid tracks” can do to a dancefloor. Don’t come here looking for any lofty concepts, this is just five of the best banging their boxes in the name of all that is grotty and lysergic.