As time goes on the influence of DAF (Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft) on the electronic music of today is becoming ever clearer. Their no-nonsense approach to music and rhythm has been hugely appreciated by producers the world over, and listening back to these four albums from 1980 to 1982 illustrates how their aesthetic is a lasting one. Their vocals, mostly speech-derived and delivered with robotic precision, are never less than striking, while the basic rhythms and jagged synth lines are laden with a strong kinetic energy. This box set brings together Die kleinen und die Bösen, Alles ist Gut, Gold und Liebe and Für immer, and is a sweaty mess of arms and legs. Catchy hooks abound, as do stern vocals – no room for tenderness here! Some of their songs sound like the mounting of an air attack, or the juddering of great machinery, while lyrics get obsessed with particular words and grunting. Because of that their music transcends language, and updates seamlessly too – as a disc of remixes proves. There is a typically motoric Moroder and Denis Naidanow version of the classic ‘Der Mussolini’, while the loping beat of Als Wär`s Das Letzte Mal (Boys Noize Remix) cuts to something twice the speed. Fizzing electro and stern vocals, plus very danceable beats – an impressive and lasting legacy, complemented by liner notes that also capture the party til I die spirit of the band. If you want to know more about electro’s founding fathers, this should be on your shopping list!
5 out of 5