Sankt Otten = Tangerine Dream + Ulrich Schnauss + Neu!
If you couldn’t tell from the band’s name, album title or album cover, this band is German. Waaay German. Messias Maschine, aside from being a celebration of clean, straight lines and 90-degree angles, is also a celebration of all things Kraut and a refutation of boring German electronic music. Messias Maschine includes collaborations with Can member Jaki Liebezeit, easy-listening electronic pioneer Ulrich Schnauss and, as an almost too obvious choice, Coley Duane Dennis from Motorik beat’s most recent champions Maserati. All this serves as a highlight reel of driving bass lines, echoing effect triggered drum pads and synthesizers set to a machine-like zen. What I wasn’t expecting, however, was how emotional this album made me. The endless arpeggios and drooping, swooning synth draws reveal a fleshy, beating heart beneath its austere shell. At over an hour, this is an album to lose an afternoon in. –Ryan Hall