Not without a certain appeal
Garth Cartwright 2008-10-07
Born in Santiago, Chile, into a musical family, the DJ known only as Dinky has come a long way since she started taking piano lessons as a child. Now a leading figure on the Berlin minimalist techno scene, May Be Later is her third album and first on the Vakant label.
Dinky's story is appropriate for our globalised times: she left Chile to visit her sister in Berlin and there picked up on the sounds being created by minimalist pioneers Plastikman, Aphex Twin and Carl Craig. Shifting to New York to study dance at the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance, she immersed herself in the NYC scene. It was in New York that Dinky began both DJ-ing and mucking about with a MPC 2000 which she composed her own tunes and beats upon. Post-9-11 fallout found her refused a visa extension to stay in the US so she shifted back to Berlin to find that city's minimalist techno scene now the epicentre of electronic dance music. Understandably, she leapt in and is now one of Berlin's leading DJs.
Listening to electronic dance music at home – as opposed to in a club (the environment where it's designed to be heard) – can be a trying experience: the huge beats and distorted samples lack presence when not blasting out of a massive sound system, the eerie synths fail to wash across the listener. And, truth be told, dancing by yourself is rarely much fun. May Be Later fails to overcome these stumbling blocks yet it is not without a certain appeal: Fade Me In has a certain Latin house zip while She Is Naughty features Big Bully on vocals and has a pop kick to it. Album closer Mind is the most experimental tune here and suggests Dinky could push further out for her next album.