Dietrich Schoenemann is a very busy man with a huge, quality-laden discography—but you've probably never heard of him, let alone heard his music. With that mouthful of a handle, he's not exactly a household name, even among underground-electronic-music aficionados—although he has remixed Philip Glass's "The Thin Blue Line." So, much credit should go to the Knightriders and Bonkers! crews for bringing Schoenemann to Re-bar on May 8.
Schoenemann started performing in New York City clubs like Danceteria and Limelight in the early '90s while in his late teens. He came to many heads' attention after he joined the techno group Prototype 909 in 1993 with Taylor Deupree and Jason Szostek. They went on to release some of that decade's most riveting, exploratory techno (see 1993's Acid Technology and 1995's Transistor Rhythm). When P909 split in 1998, Schoenemann launched the Hidden Agenda label and focused his energies on solo production and DJing dance-floor-centric techno, while starting three other imprints. One of his productions, Trailer Park, under the moniker Unit Park with Deupree, featured some of the most lethal minimal techno of the '90s. Showing diversity, Schoenemann also released an excellent disc of plutonian abstract techno in 2000, Shadowgraphs. His 2001 DJ mix An Agenda and a Beat revealed his uncanny ear for bleeding-edge, hard techno, including his own civil-rights-speech-enhanced anthem "19 Bullets."
Schoenemann's maintained his razor-sharp acumen as a selector while nurturing his labels and creative partnership with producer Tony Rohr. As a mastering engineer, Schoenemann has access to exclusive dubplates, as well, so expect a unique, powerful set from him at Bonkers!—and with 3-D visuals projected behind him.
That same night, local producer Erictronic will be celebrating the release of his CD Disco Chronic Volume One, on Seattle's Pleasure Boat Records. Disco Chronic follows in the wiggly slipstream of previous Pleasure Boat output by the Naturebot and PotatoFinger. That is, Eric-tronic is one of those knob-twiddlers who convert twitchy rhythms and a predilection for "wrong" textures into compositions that splutter, twinkle, and blurt with charming insouciance.
Yes, Disco Chronic is yet more wonky IDM, a deeply unfashionable style of late, but Erictronic's keyboard dexterity and nostalgia-nudging, video-game melodies make his music instantly mood-lifting. Tracks like "Ignoblest of Beasts" and "Thanks for Having Babies" recall the quirky convolutions and unhinged tunesmithery of Bogdan Raczynski and Astrobotnia. Then "Ud_2" comes along to upend the prevalent manic madness with a gorgeous fluty reverie. With Disco Chronic, the Pleasure Boat dynasty continues to gather steam.
Dietrich Schoenemann, Nerd Revolt, Travis Baron, Erictronic perform Fri May 8, Re-bar, 10 pm, $9 before 11 pm/$13 after, 21+.