Review Summary: This is a fun album to listen to between lessons, meetings, or lectures.
Siriusmo is the pseudonym for German producer Moritz Friedrich. The strengths and weaknesses of his debut LP Mosaik are rooted in his German heritage. He expertly utilizes his Euro-synth influences in an amusing and efficient way but at times he does this too much to the extent that you feel you should be listening to it with your German friends called Gunter and Magnus. After almost a decade of multiple single releases and remixes, he has created this 17-track album Mosaik. Despite the quantity of tracks the album neither seems, nor actually is, that long (it lasts for around an hour). Each track flows seamlessly through to the next and it is one of the easiest-to-listen-to electronic albums of recent years.
The album is mostly composed of techno and electro tracks created by synths and simple drums. From the start, with the Daft Punk-like techno of ‘High Together’, to the end with ‘Red Knob’, the album is funky and funny – have you noticed an emphasis on fun? The sampled clapping audience becoming bemused and appalled at the samples of him failing to start his set at the beginning of the opening track create the humour that flows through the album, before ‘Feromonkin’ and ‘Sirimande’ continue the fun with some bouncy electro.
The album peaks in the middle with the best song from the album being the sumptuous ‘Nights Off’, a song to chill out to on some exotic beach far away – probably in Mallorca. It is an addictive song perhaps due to its simplicity but also due to the euphoric tones that resonate long after you hear it.
It rescues the album from what is a diabolical period between tracks 6-9. ‘Bad Idea’ sees him attempt some grimy hip hop but the result is wholly unsatisfying – it is a messy track that disrupts the early flow that the album was developing with its funky start. ‘123’ is also a track to be forgotten – it is an archetypal Euro synth piece and that is the problem, it is a cliché of a song and it is thus completely uninspiring. The album at this point needs rescuing but luckily he comes up with a ‘Good Idea’ and ‘Einimal in der Woche Schreien’, both songs that are European influenced but at the same time transcend their influence to become good techno songs.
The album’s strength is that it is generally light-hearted at a time when so many electronic albums are quite serious. There is not much innovation to be heard in any of the songs, but Friedrich has used the sounds of successful producers in the last 30 years to create a familiar and accessible sound for the new decade. It is at times crude with (that) ‘Bad Idea’ and ‘Feed My Meatmachine’ both living up to the tones of their names. There are always going to be at least a couple of disappointing songs in a 17-track long LP but at the same time, despite its length, the album flows by quickly it is one that you can dip in and out of – imagine having it on throughout a day, short bursts played on the school bus or between meetings.
In order to rate it, I’m going to go all Robert Ebert and devise some unorthodox way of expressing my schizophrenic ideas towards the album. Musically, it is not extraordinary or particularly innovative. While songs like ‘Nights Off’ and ‘Symbol’ are particularly enjoyable, songs like ‘123’ and ‘Feed my Meatmachine’ are not. In, perhaps, an objective manner, I’d give it 2½ * but because of how easy it is to listen to and the fun that is had for much of the album I’d also like to give it a 3½ * rating. I will not compromise to simply give it a 3* rating.