Album Review: Tempelhof – Frozen Dancers
For many musicians, the idea of a sophomore album is more than daunting. It seems to be a linchpin of destruction for artists who push so hard to create their first album they’re left with nothing for the follow up. Frozen Dancers is the antithesis of the sophomore slump, a triumphant and emotional body of work by Italian duo Tempelhof.
Plenty has changed in the electronic music climate in the three years since Luciano Ermondi and Paolo Mazzacani’s first LP We Were Not There For The Beginning We Won’t Be There For The End. Several artists in the experimental/ambient realm have popped up and carried the genre into hipster-infested waters, minimal techno has experienced a roller coaster ride of reception, and downtempo has basically frozen in time. Even though you could say the album fits into all three of these categories, Tempelhof does a remarkable job of remaining unaffected by the said goings-on. Frozen Dancers is the kind of ambient your older brother used to play, the kind of minimal that cares nothing for fashion, and the kind of downtempo that manages to have a futuristic edge. It breathes new life into all three genres.
With a charismatic mixture of lush soundscapes like album opener “Drake” and “Nothing At The Horizon,” melody-driven vocal cuts like “Change,” and “Monday Is Black,” and slow-burning minimal masterpieces “The Dusk” and “Skateboarding At Night,” Frozen Dancers makes for a true listening experience. Detail and craftsmanship are apparent in every twist and turn.