Tyree Cooper, Axel Boman Remix Justus Kohncke's 'Timecode' for Kompakt


by Philip Sherburne
Justus Köhncke / Photo by Steffen Jagenburg
Justus Köhncke / Photo by Steffen Jagenburg

Nine years later, tick-tocking classic is as hypnotic as ever

Today Kompakt announced new remixes of Justus Köhncke's 2004 classic "Timecode," which find hip-house pioneer Tyree Cooper and Swedish house miscreant Axel Boman injecting fresh energy into the perennial crowd-pleaser.

Originally included on Köhncke's Zwei Photonen EP, "Timecode" represents a perfect balance of the Cologne musician's divergent tendencies. Reduced to the bare essentials — rock-steady drum groove, flashing synth vamps, and, above all, that unforgettable bass line — it's simultaneously a study in dance-floor economy and a sly nod to disco populism. (If the tune gives you déjà vu, it's not just you: The bass line quotes liberally from Lipps, Inc.'s "How Long.") Köhncke has always been a poptimist: His debut album, 1999's Spiralen der Erinnerung, covered Carole King, Paul McCartney, Jimmy Webb, and Janis Ian. "Timecode," on the other hand, is a study in disco hypnotism, right down to the tick-tocking clock samples — trance by another means.

And while it could be reasonably argued that "Timecode" hardly needs updating, Cooper and Boman's interpretations pass muster by virtue of their low-key approach. Cooper teases elements of the original's bass line and bleeps into lush piano chords and snappy Roland drum programming, while Boman leads us down a wormhole of broken beats and tin-can reverb; both versions are likely to sneak up on you in a wave of delayed recognition — like déjà vu of a déjà vu.

The EP, featuring the eight-minute original plus both remixes, is out on Kompakt on February 4.

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