Ideas call for realisation, realisations turn into habits, habits then quickly turn into traditions, and traditions become an intrinsic part of culture. Born at the turn of the new millennium as a symbol of a new era for electronic music, Kompakt's longstanding TOTAL series returns with its 18th iteration, spreading over two CDs the essential of the label's last few months of intense activity and extended breadth of resources, blowing out its 25th birthday candle with the breath of a young, throbbing heart.
Introducing faces new and familiar, full-scale hits and criminally overlooked tunes, TOTAL 18 recollects glorious moments on the dancefloor and further intimate ones between friends, inviting the listener to flick through a family album marked with tracks as distant yet eerily close as Sonns highly sensual 'Tame' and John Tejada's propulsive 'Detector', Terranova's elegiac 'Let It Fail' and Rex The Dog's mind-altering 'Crasher' but also, and as usual, its lot of unreleased cuts - transcending the mere retrospective nature of the classic compilation format for a further complete core sampling of Kompakt's zeitgeist.
With a handful exclusive deliveries courtesy of label co-founder Jürgen Paape - here making a rare appearance with the humbly-titled opener 'Well It's Paape', &nd's one and only Aaron Ahrends with the nostalgic 'Eyes Closed', Tobias Thomas and Michael Mayer as Thomas/Mayer, Lebsanft & Raquet and the poetic synthesis of 'Signale', Cologne figure Jörg Burger on electro-punk- wave mode, minimal Danish talent Christian Nielsen and Voigt & Voigt for a session of left-of-centre techno, TOTAL 18 sweeps the spectrum back and forth, navigating from the deeper umbra onto the brighter shades seamlessly.
A wide-scope snapshot of the label's recent past, immediate present and near future, TOTAL 18 moves and shifts, from the power of dancefloor-oriented pieces such as Tom Demac & Real Lies' 'White Flowers' (here presented in its house version), Dixon's silky revamp of Vermont and Gui Boratto's euphoric club weapon 'Forgive Me' onto the funky electro pop flavours of Fahrland, cosmic dub-tech jazz of Ghost Vision and robot bounce of T. Raumschmiere's 'Augen Zu' for a whelming tour d'horizon. Kompakt's annual yearbook as seen through Michael Mayer's eyes, for your ears and pleasure. A collection of music to discover and rediscover.
„It's become such a nice tradition to put together TOTAL compilations. It feels a lot like going through one's photos at the end of the year.
Memories come back to mind from moments when a particular track made its first impression on me or how the same track would become a highlight in my DJ sets at some point. Each track has a story to tell. Apart from the obvious big tunes, TOTAL's also bear room for the sleeper hits, those tracks that were criminally overlooked. With a bunch of new exclusive contributions thrown in the mix there's plenty to discover or rediscover. KOMPAKT's annual yearbook seen through my eyes for your ears and pleasure.“ - Michael Mayer