ANBB Mimikry

The fruits of a collaboration begun in 2007 and, of course, their individual decades of genre-defining work, Carsten Nicolai and Blixa Bargeld deliver something that resembles, yet angles off, their combined discographies. The electronics on Mimikry play within the same airless space that Nicolai's Alva Noto works usually occupy, but with an added intensity and/or luring melodic quality that's perfect for Bargeld's free-verse song stories. When it's nice, it's sublime, like the cover of Harry Nilsson's "One," or at least weirdly affecting, like the pulsing "I Wish I Was a Mole in the Ground." But when it's naughty the clouds of noise and gut-rattling low-end thwacks, as on "Fall" or the title track, rival Einstürzende Neubauten at their most apocalyptic. Both artists possess an edge ― Nicolai's more conceptual or scientific, Bargeld's visceral and poetic ― and they bring these together spectacularly to scissor their way through great swathes of song. (Raster-Noton)