Sheffield electro pioneers compiled...
Trace the tangled circuitry of dance history back to the days of
nuclear paranoia and Margaret Thatcher and there lie Cabaret Voltaire.
Connecting the pristine futurism of Kraftwerk, the dour synth writhings
of no-tech Britain and the incipient dance revolution, Sheffield duo
Richard Kirk and Stephen Mallinder adapted hardware to hard times and
became essential listening in Manchester, New York and Detroit. No
coincidences there, then. “Hugely influential” should cover it – and
with electro now back on the agenda, it’s an impact still sounding
This fine compilation follows the comprehensive 3CD box set ‘Conform To
Deform’ and shows Cabaret Voltaire emerging from the gloom of industrial
experimentation into the bright lights of proto-house. John Luongo’s
1983 mixes of ‘Fascination’ and ‘Crackdown’ loop grimly like an inner-city roundabout: later, the uptight machine funk of ‘Sensoria’ and
‘James Brown’ flush with dance fervour, while ‘Thank You America’ and
‘Here To Go’ let remixers Frances Kervorkian and John Robie draw up all-
To a generation raised on beats and samples, it might
sound dated but listen, and you can hear the faultlines between old and
new split and widen. Here is the sound of change. For good.