A robot stutters rhythmically amidst a flurry of synthetic drums as "Lightspeed" brings Superlative Fatigue, Erik Wiegand's first full-length in 13 years, blazingly into focus. The cheerful staccato rises and falls in pitch, almost becoming parodic as it resembles the bleating of an artificial sheep.
Wiegand, who is famed in the Berlin club scene as Errorsmith, expertly wields sound, whether it be of the robot/animal hybrid variety, or something more dance floor-friendly, like the squelching melodic lead featured on "I'm Interesting, Cheerful & Sociable." His ability to manipulate both the familiar and the uncanny is epitomized in songs such as the almost hilarious "My Party" and the oddly propelling title track, with its truly strange percussion breaks and blown-out bass line.
While the weirdness factor may disengage those looking for a straight-ahead dance record, the sheer upbeat nature of the songs should be enough for thrill seekers to glom onto. That this album was released on PAN, a label that straddles the dance floor and the dankest of subterranean noise venues, should be an indication that listeners should expect the unexpected. (Pan)