Maskenfreiheit – 5am
Growing up, I spent most of my 20’s in Bristol, living in and around St Paul’s and Stokes Croft. Invariably many nights out ended up at some tiny, almost hidden dodgy makeshift club. The kind that’s all glued down toilet seats and warm cans of Red Stripe. Cloying smoke and sweaty ceilings.
What’s this got to do with Maskenfreiheit? Well, their gorgeous, dubby new single “5am” pinpoints that exact feeling. The hazy, wobbly, wondrous vibe that only occurs when you know you should be in bed but you’d much rather dance. That moment where everything comes together and the clarity cuts through the murk of the night.
It’s all serpentine bass and delayed drum machines. Honeyed female vocals wrapped up in their own sensual reverb. Tight, cutting guitars with a razorblade edge. Bedroom music with a wide screen vision.
This song is huge. I don’t mean like over polished stadium rock. It’s huge like the ocean. It’s dark and menacing and deep. It’s scary and beautiful.
It slinks along and builds up and up, dragging you forwards into a euphoric, textural delight and blossoming into a distorted soundscape of a finale. It takes your breath away.