CLARA MOTO: Polyamour (InFiné)


Posted on Mar 17th 2010 09:28 pm

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Clara Moto: Polyamour

InFiné 2010
11 Tracks. 54mins54secs

Amazon UK: CD | DLD US: CD | DLD

In the four years since its inception, Franco-German imprint In-Finé has made a tangible mark somewhere between dance-floor and lounge, with excellent releases from Francisco Tristano, Rone, Apparat or Aufgang demonstrating the eclectic yet focussed vision of label head Sebastien Devaud. Perfect embodiment of this ethic is Austrian artist Clara ‘Moto’ Prettenhofer, whose debut album swerves elegantly between the two, often blending fluid grooves and celestial atmospherics into infinite combinations, some leaning towards minimal tech-house, brightened up with pretty strong melodies and a hefty dose of human emotions, others resolutely more haunting and, occasionally ambient. This is no insipid coffee-table tosh though. All throughout the record, Clara creates stunning little electronic vignettes which, while often very different, undeniably stem from a singular clear vision.

Hailing from the Austrian city of Graz, Prettenhofer grew up surrounded by musical instruments that her parents had collected over the years. She began by playing the piano but turned to DJing as a student, eventually playing in clubs in Vienna. In 2006, she was invited to take part in the Red Bull Academy in Melbourne, alongside Flying Lotus. Soon after, she released her first 12”, Glove Affair, on In-Finé, followed by two more, Silently (2008) and Deer & Fox (2009), both featuring vocal contributions from Prettenhofer’s long term friend Mimu.

The first half of Polyamour is resolutely upbeat, propelled by the dubby Emory Bortz and Alma, the latter progressively being brought onto dryer grounds as the beat gains definition, and later on Glove Affair, built on a clinical drum pattern and a heady electronic riff, while Mimu gives the delightful acidic techno-pop of Deer & Fox a captivating ice-cold edge. Things become more atmospheric with Song Of Exhaustion And Ivory, which despite a persistent micro-beat, brings this record into a more meditative mood. This is further developed on the following two pieces, Goodnight Twilight and Joy Of My Heart, the former a dense and cloudy beat-less construction which at times recall some of The Orb’s most ambient pieces, the latter a more defined track brought to life once again by Mimu. Things kick off again with the bleepy sound of Threeminutes, supported by a sharp rhythmic section, and the minimal Silently. With Take A Second, Prettenhofer invokes the spirit of classic Detroit techno but shades it with occasional slabs of warm dub, before concluding with a light dusting of atmospheric electronics on The Opposite Is Also Wrong.

Clara Moto has produced with her first album a warm and engaging collection of classic electronic music. Fuelled equally by a taste for beats and grooves on one side, and by a great understanding of atmospheric soundscapes and textures on the other, Polyamour is a superb addition to In-Finé’s catalogue.


Clara Moto (MySpace) | InFiné
Amazon UK: CD | DLD US: CD | DLD

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