Shed Shedding the Past

Shedding the Past hits shelves and hard drives as one of the most hotly anticipated debut techno albums of the fall season, and for good reason. Shed, a Berlin producer who has been putting out tracks on his Soloaction label since 2004, has promised what few others have delivered in the past year: techno that aspires to make a clean break from the kind of revisionism that harkens back to Detroit or Chicago or Berlin’s dub-techno, which is incidentally the kind of recordings that have been coming out in droves as the genre wonders where to go next. Furthermore, Shedding The Past actually delivers on the ambition of its title, perhaps not necessarily shedding the past entirely but at least aligning itself with the likes of early Thomas Brinkmann, Mike Ink and the era of full-bodied techno albums from Force Inc. that made heavy use of rhythm without necessarily pandering to the dance floor. A frequently brilliant listen, Shed offers a bold return to the kind of conceptual techno that flourished between 1997 and 2001, which is to say, techno that attempted to drop influences altogether and look only to the future. This is a well-intentioned and executed statement that arrives not a moment too soon. (Ostgut Ton)