Friday, August 28, 2009

Schatrax - "Aliena's Journey"

There's an interesting conversation going on over at Little Detroit at the moment, regarding the benefits or otherwise of faceless or anonymous artists, something which has long happened in dance music.

I'm not sure how I feel about it - on the one hand, some labels (and it's difficult not to think of the peerless Underground Resistance and related labels when talking about this) have made some astonishing music working behind anonymous artist monikers.

But often some of the greatest music has been written by people not even working behind artist aliases, but behind label aliases, with not even a hint of which or how many artists were involved.

One of my favourite of these labels was Schatrax, which (as well as being one of the coolest sounding label names ever) over the mid-90s issued 10 separate releases, all simply labelled with the Schatrax logo, and with tracknames scratched into the runout groove. I stumbled into one of the releases at the late vinyl section of Fopp on Byres Road, Glasgow back when Lars lka Funk D'Void was doing the ordering. I was instantly hooked on the Schatrax sound, and I think it's one of only three or four labels I ever deliberately collected every release on.

With loping synthetic drums, immensely warm but lonesome synth textures, and a big sense of techno soul, Schatrax was probably one of my favourite labels of all time.

Here, from the final release of the original 10, is "Aliena's Journey".

No comments: