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Album Review

Reuber's fourth solo release is a pleasant affair, serving as a reminder of electronic roots as much as 2007-era trends, if not more so, as well as being a sonic tribute to the South Pole (Sudpol's translation into English) and Antarctica, also fertile ground for any number of ambient and avant-garde experimenters. The way Sudpol begins with the slow rising build of "Altweiber," all steady synth notes and compressed production, could just as easily be from an adventurous musician from Reuber's native Cologne thirty years ago — if that's retro, though, then it's done in skillful fashion. And if Sudpol provides little in the way of immediate surprise, it's still a fine listen throughout, whether touching on ambient glitch/pulse on "Amundsen" — an intriguing tribute to the legendary Norwegian explorer who first reached the South Pole itself — or finding a perfect sense of what a theme song to a late-'70s popular science TV show might be like with the galloping joy of "Nach Vorn'." Part of the album's (perhaps unintended) conceit is its subtlety — mastered at a lower volume than a lot of recent releases, it requires a little more out of a listener to catch the at-times intriguing variety at work in many of the songs. The way that "Tausendnadelwind" transforms into a near early-'90s Aphex Twin tribute after easing in from "Dominique-B" is one such moment of many.

Südpol, Reuber
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