The Kick Off The Kick Off

EPs

Dimitri Kneepers Dimitri KneepersThe Kick Off

6 / 10

PLANET E (PLE-65324-1, 12” + digital)

As most people know, everything in life is cyclical. Planet E know that, too, and after a glorious second half of the decade, marked by its opening up to Europe, maestro Carl Craig’s label has slowed down somewhat in the last couple of years. Not when it comes to quantity, far from it, but when it comes to the transcendence of its releases. We’re generalising, of course, but when talking about one of the most influential labels in the history of techno, one tends to be demanding. What seems beyond any doubt is that C2’s imprint is going through a period of a certain nostalgia, during which it seems to want to once again find the root of the techno sound it once helped shape. The fact that its latest release comes from Dimitri Kneppers confirms that gaze is fixed on the past.

Kneppers is a Dutch house DJ with more than 25 years of experience and who is a legend in his home country. In 2007, Kneppers announced his retirement and signed up as a volunteer at a farm where mentally ill people are cared for. We imagine that Dimitri found that he couldn’t live without music, and in June 2010 he returned both to the DJ booth and the recording studio. The first result of his renewed creative impulse is this “The Kick Off”, a Latin house interpretation of“Canto Ostinato” by another legend of Dutch music, composer Simeon Ten Holt. Although “interpretation” is a matter of speaking, because what Kneppers has done is sample a recording by pianist Kees Wieringa, edit it and add a salsa groove, an off-balance throbbing bassline and some isolated apocalyptic synthesiser arrangements. Not that it’s bad music, but on this kind of reconstructions the line between hit and vulgarity is very thin and this time, unfortunately, Kneppers ended up on the wrong side of it. The other side of the single contains the C2 remix, which starts with only the piano and, little by little, adds to the tension with small synthesiser notes that makes you wait for the explosion of the beat. And you wait, you wait a little more, and the beat, well, never comes. Luckily, this is not the only remix Craig has done of the track, as Planet E has already announced a second 12” for early this year, with remixes by Orlando Voorn and another one by the label head honcho, we suppose this time with some kind of rhythm. Will there be any redemption?

Franc Sayol

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