- The Zenker Brothers' sound comes with expectations—namely, the presence of drum breaks, however slight or loosely referential, and the forward momentum of percussive techno. So it stands to reason that Marco Zenker's solo material wouldn't stray from his duo's style. Even more so than on the Munich producer's last EP for Ilian Tape, 2626, Phony Pictures hews close to the big, roughshod rhythms of 2015 standout Immersion. What makes these tracks especially interesting, though, is how they slyly tweak the Zenker formula.
The most familiar cut here is "Motion," which works out a solid groove with its chopped drum breaks, delayed synth notes and big, gummy low-end. It'll keep a 130 BPM mix moving nicely, but the more unexpected tracks steal the spotlight. "First Feeling," with its submerged synth chords and hypnotic FX, traces a line of muted highs and effervescent lows across its six minutes. That one, like "Motion" and the reverb-soaked "Amb-01," has a punchy, rolling kick pattern that keeps the beat lively, whereas "Isolated" animates its 4/4 with skipping hi-hats and some blown-out bass notes. When Marco drops distorted percussion and a wash of spacey synth over "Isolated"'s propulsive intro, the effect is understated euphoria. Those sorts of twists are what keeps a trusted artist from losing his edge.
B1 First Feeling