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Extrawelt are Arne Schaffhausen and Wayan Raabe. Both have been around for about 40 years, and making music together for half that time. They enjoy normal things and are ashamed of their carbon footprints due to the large number of flights they take to bring them to their gigs. Unknown, is the tenth studio album from the producer team, and the fourth under the name Extrawelt. Its largely devoted to another side of their creations.* * * * * Somethings different. Well, Extrawelt releases always have been somehow different yet, despite becoming instantly absorbed into the familiar Extrawelt atmosphere when listening, I cant help but notice again: somethings very different. Feet are bouncing, mind is traveling and my fingers speed across the keyboard like theyre on fire. Im trying to imagine what it would be like to listen to Unknown with closed eyes in the midst of a throbbing concert instead of through laptop speakers. Listening to Extrawelt on crappy speakers is anyway never a good idea, as it really deserves the backing of the loudest and best possible sound system. With this, I leave the audio confines of my lo-fi laptop world and get in the car. Cranking up the stereo, I cruise around aimlessly lost in appreciation of the music from within the bubble of my metal highway-pod on wheels. Ive got the urge to speed up which is surprising considering Im a usually a very sensible driver. The bass and the beats blow up in my face. Something uncluttered. Something broken. Something grimy. Something sideways. Something undeniably Extrawelt, yet inherently different to what weve come to expect from the Hamburg pair. I dont plan on getting all emotional, but something about this twelve track journey fits together so superbly its hard not to be overcome with at least a few shivers up the spine. With profound bass lines and cutting drums, I keep coming back to these sounds. Again and again these sounds. On one hand you feel that you know them, on the other hand you don't know them at all. Is that a synthesiser or a voice? Is it rotating or just linear reinvented? Whatever the answer, my mind goes astray. Whether this is exotic or native doesn't matter: all I know is that its great. Meanwhile Ive reached track seven and now I realise whats been different all along it isnt techno! Somehow, theyve accomplished staying true to themselves despite deploying not even one four-to-the floor-bass drum. Admittedly, you can find a couple of similar tracks on a few of their previous releases, but here youve got a whole album full of it. I gotta listen to track seven again. As a music writer Im asking myself: what genre of music is this actually? Neo-Electro? Alternative Electronica? Emo-EDM?? Ah, whatever these guys dont like to be put into boxes anyway. Its simply Extrawelt.As I talk to Arne and Wayan later on, I discover that the tracks on Unknown began simmering more than ten years ago without any goal or idea regarding if theyd end up releasing them. Come 2018 though, the time felt right to dedicate an entire album to this side of their musical spectrum. This also explains how Unknown appeared so quickly after their most recent LP Fear Of An Extra Planet. As the guys mention We just felt these tracks a lot when we made them, and never cared really if anyone would be interested in it. Were definitely interested!



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