- The remarkable consistency of Anja Schneider's Beyond the Valley was both its strongest selling point and its downfall. It's great to hear someone pound out a collection of high-quality techno over the course of an hour. But if I wanted to hear ten excellent dance floor-leaning tracks in a row, I'd line up a bunch of Anja Schneider 12-inches and play them back-to-back or, you know, go hear her spin the next time she was in town. Singles are just about the right size for this sort of thing, and Schneider's latest 12-inch for Mobilee proves the point.
"iThought" sets out the template for each, featuring a muscular tech house beat married to a guitar riff and moody bass. A female voice thinks that you were her man, but has apparently been since corrected. It's all been done before, but rarely has Schneider's music sounded this urgent. Credit probably needs to go to her collaboration with Kiki here, who brings the same sound palette that fueled his own "Good Voodoo" to bear on the proceedings.
"Amore" and "iLook" continue in the same vein to slightly lesser effect. Both are propulsive tunes that utilize well-placed vocal snippets—"you hear me, we're gonna get...," your guess is as good as mine, respectively—to keeps things interesting. "Amore" has better handclaps, "iLook" goes far deeper, but both stand in the shadow of "iThought," a rare moment when a little bit of inconsistency is a very good look.