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Ekkehard Ehlers


(Straubgold; US: 19 Oct 2012; UK: 22 Oct 2012)

Ekkehard Ehlers’ new track Adikia makes me feel like I am holding a styrofoam sphere in front of me while someone far above, perhaps lurking in some darkened alcove, pours thick, black ink onto the sphere. This may seem like an unhelpful comparison that tells the reader little about what this music sounds like, but this is the image that comes to mind when I listen to Adikia, so you folks will have to just take it or leave it. And once you have listened to Adikia, you will agree that there is something decidedly inky about it. 

I can get into this type of minimalist experimental stuff, especially if Mike Patton is involved, and there are certainly moments in Adikia that make me feel like lighting some candles, pulling a blanket over myself, and crawling around my apartment on all fours. But there is also something frustrating and directionless about Adikia. About 15 minutes in, Adikia begins to flirt with some nice jazzy atmospherics—ala Sinister Luck Ensemble or the Chicago Underground Quartet—but the jazzy stuff fizzles out pretty quickly, which is a shame, because it was starting to work. The vocals toward the end might come off as “emotional” or “experimental” to some ears, but to mine, they are just irritating and distracting.


Benjamin Hedge Olson is a writer, ethnographer, scholar, and teacher based in Greensboro, North Carolina. He holds a PhD in American Studies from the University of Hawaii, Manoa, and an MA in Popular Culture from Bowling Green State University. Dr. Olson is currently an Instructor in Cultural Studies at American InterContinental University. You can contact him via LinkedIn:

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