Boomkat Product Review:
Jan Jelinek's most exceptional dancefloor-focussed material, Farben's "Textar+" anthology has been freshly remastered and sounds better than ever. Dusted, jazzy experimental deep house that exists outside of the timeline, this 2022 edition comes with two additional tracks recorded in the same period. Huge recommendation.
When Jelinek released the CMYK series of EPs that make up 'Textar', we'd never heard anything quite like it. Jelinek was making use of glitched sample material, harnessing deep house and disco sounds that felt anything but minimalist. Driven by a desire to link together his love of soul and jazz music with ideas that were being explored at the time by labels like Mille Plateaux, Jelinek's production technique was hybridized - recording directly to DAT using a mixing desk rather than working completely inside the box, and the sampler he was using to provide the soul and jazz elements had a strict limit of 1.44 megabytes of data per track. These limitations, for whatever reason, guided Jelinek into a groove that two decades later still sounds relevant - just flick to 'Live At The Sahara Tahoe, 1973' and absorb its tumbling jazz drums, disco pings and those swooping strings. It's like hearing the remnants of a '70s disco track being filtered through telephone interference and a malfunctioning room-sized computer.
Jelinek nods to French filtered house and Chicago deep house styles too - as well as the sample-heavy Nu Yorican funk of Masters at Work - but his end result isn't derivative, it's revelatory. By stripping the sound to its bare essentials, Jelinek removes some of the dancefloor functionality but zeroes in on the crucial emotionality behind the music's components. That romantic lilt that swoops around 'farben Says Love To Love You Baby' or the muted organ-led melancholy of 'farben Says As Long As There's Love Around' still gets us just as much as it did way back then. And if you can resist the roller rink breakdown on 'Beautone' (still Jelinek's finest moment) then you might need to take a long hard look at yrself in the mirror (ball).
Whether you've come to Jelinek via "Loop Finding Jazz Records" or his more recent early electronic-inspired synth squiggles, "Textar" is an unmissable piece of the puzzle.