Mouse on Mars’ Guide to Funkstörung
It’s been nearly ten years since Funkstörung, the Bavarian duo of Michael Fakesch and Chris De Luca, last released an album together. Active throughout the ’90s and early 2000s, the pair had a series of outings on Bunker sublabel Acid Planet, !K7 and their own Musik Aus Strom, remixed the likes of Wu-Tang Clan and Björk and is credited with helping to invent glitch-hop. Now, Fakesch and De Luca are back together with a self-titled LP for Modeselektor’s Monkeytown label. Ahead of its release, we enlisted Mouse on Mars, another vanguard IDM duo from Germany, to guide us through some standouts from Funkstörung’s catalog.
Everything came from gabber. Gabber was the revolution. This is something you could call gabber acid, the primordial ooze from which Funkstörung arose like an Amazonian swamp monster. Back then they were still called Musik aus Strom.
When techno sounded like Unit Moebius, Sähkö or this early Funkstörung track we thoroughly loved it. Warm, dirty, mysterious and psychedelic without the added trance kitsch. Just great sounds: elegant and direct. This track could run for hours.
Another dry-as-bone track. A bit more off-kilter but still dark and brooding, without the annoying attitude. Distorted bass was the best invention of the ’90s.
Dance floor destroyer. This record was always in our case back then. Played at the right moment at Liquid Sky or Joined parties in Cologne, people always lost it completely. We only wish that we could’ve written this track.
Björk – “All is Full of Love (In Love with Funkstörung Remix)”
With this remix, Funkstörung became superstars for IDM eternity. Aphex Twin, Autechre, all those Warp key figures were suddenly on the outside looking in. Their remix was daring and sexy and catapulted Björk into the 22nd century. After this, industrial drums and ring modulations were everywhere.
IDM pop. Milky Chance took their cues from this song.
Tes & Funkstörung – “Fat Camp Feva”
Dirty funk! Pretty laid back, too. This was a blueprint for people like Jamie Lidell, Puppetmastaz, Modeselektor and DJ Ötzi. Back then we called Funkstörung “the Mexicans from Rosenheim.”
Is this a track, solely sound design or psychoacoustic, genetically engineered funk? It’s so dry it makes you breathlessly hold onto your watering can.
“Wu-Tang Clan Reunited (Funkstörung Mix)”
You are not a pop star if you haven’t been remixed by Funkstörung. Those were the noughties: only music could make music even better. And this pitch stop in the middle is pure cheeky brilliance.
Funkstörung ft. Anothr – “Laid Out (Mouse on Mars ‘It’s a Blader’ Remix)”
Finally we got together. It was an honor to rewire this song (streaming in its original form above) from the new Funkstörung album. Even though they’ve returned in a more placid mood, their unpretentious elegance is still there.
Published June 26, 2015.