May 282017
 

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A lot of positive feedback followed “Organism” (Karlrecords), the fourth collaborative album by Uwe Zahn aka Arovane (if you are a follower of high-quality contemporary electronics, you should know his wonderful albums ‘Lilies’ and ‘Tides’ for City Centre Office and ‘Atol Scrap’ on Pole and Monolake’s imprint DIN, at least) and the surprising Iranian composer Porya Hatami (I could have introduced some of his releases on Hibernate in Chain DLK’s page). Let’s find out the reason for such acclaim together, with its authors.

 

Arovane

courtesy of Ulf Bueschleb

 Chain D.L.K.: Hi Porya and Uwe! How are you?

Arovane: I’m fine. Currently working in my studio on new sounds for a collaboration with Darren McClure and scanning through tracks for a follow up to “Organism.”

Porya Hatami: Hello, thank you!

 

Chain D.L.K.: You recently signed your third collaborative album, didn’t you? It seems you like to co-work. What are the reasons for such a reciprocal understanding that supposedly feeds this collaboration?

Arovane: Yes. I like to co-work very much. It’s an inspiring process. Porya and I are very into sound design and sounds. We share a deep interest and motivation to record and to create new sounds and to manipulate sounds. Porya is famous for his field recordings. I used this technique to create some very special sounds for “Veerian” (a collaboration with Porya Hatami and Darren McClure – Eilean rec. 2016). I recorded clouds of insects in front of my house in the garden. The natural sound had a granular characteristic that I liked very much. If you listen very carefully, you can recognize the processed sound on the album. I used some DSP processing to transform the insect sound into an electronic, fuzzy tonal cloud.

Porya Hatami: Actually, “Organism” is our fourth collaborative album if you count the one that we released with Darren McClure entitled “Veerian.” Well, we have a similar taste in sound and music; we talk on a daily basis and exchange sounds and ideas, and that has created a very comfortable zone for collaborating. We can decide on the concept and direction of a new album after a few short chats, and that makes working together a lot of fun.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Did you know each other before your very first collaboration?

Arovane: No. On my side, there was no connection or recognition of the Iranian electronic scene before. I think it was a track or sound from Porya on Soundcloud or Bandcamp I stumbled across that awakened my interest. I contacted Porya, and so the story began.

Porya Hatami: Not personally, but I had known Uwe’s music for a long time, and he was one of my favorite artists from back when I started listening to this kind of music.

 

Porya Hatami

courtesy of Pejman Pabarja

Chain D.L.K.: Both of your sonic research seems to have been focused on the organic side of electronic music. How do you explain the typical contrast between machine-generated or artificial music and nature?

Arovane: Is there a contrast or difference? That’s what I’m asking. You’ll find sound structures in nature that are comparable to structures in electronic music or synthesis technologies, e.g. granular synthesis. It’s comparable to swarming behavior. I think the contrast between “artificial music“ and natural sounds becomes blurred in specific aspects. I remember a sound I worked on that was a field recording of a huge, rusty old door. I used a short snippet of that recording with a granular synthesizer and it sounded like a cloud of violins! If you dive deep into sound structures, you’ll find a lot of synthetic-sounding structures in nature and vice versa. I would like to say, there is a kind of symmetric correlation. If you listen to insects, they sound quite “electronic” or “artificial” sometimes. Birds have the ability to create sounds that remind me of FM-frequency modulation.

Porya Hatami: In the past, I was trying to create a balance between the two, but recently I more and more see both of them the same way. Once the sounds made it onto my palette, there was no contrast between a natural source, an acoustic or purely electronic sound. I treat them all as basic elements of my creation, necessary to put down the ideas that I had in mind.

 

Chain D.L.K.: What’s the most charming aspect of both electronic music and nature that will never meet, in your opinion?

Arovane: Interesting question. There are beautiful sounds in nature that we are never able to synthesize or recreate with technology, I think. But when we try, it’s imperfect in a way. That’s a charming aspect for me.

Porya Hatami: I agree with Uwe. There are times when you try to recreate a certain natural sound and you fail, but end up with some completely new sound.

 

Arovane

courtesy of Ulf Bueschleb

Chain D.L.K.: Uwe, I still remember your wonderful album ‘Lilies.’ If I remember well, there was a connection with Japan related to that album. Did you lose it after the long hiatus following that album and ‘Tides’ (another masterpiece)?

Arovane: No. I have a strong attraction to Japan and the Japanese culture. I played concerts back in 2014 together with my colleague Loscil. Kazumi, who sang on the album ‘Lilies,’ is one of my best friends.

 

Chain D.L.K.: With reference to the geographic and cultural connection, Porya, could you tell us something about the Iranian scene that, in spite of being a nest of great contemporary musicians, is out of focus due (maybe) to political disputes?

Porya Hatami: Fortunately, Iran’s music scene has been the subject of focus for the past few years, and this growing scene has drawn more attention lately. There have been some features on different websites and in magazines covering Iran’s musical scene and different aspects of it, such as the problems and difficulties that artists are facing …
So, nothing comes to my mind at the moment regarding your question, but you can see some biased reports here and there and, sometimes, some of them are poorly researched, and they are mostly based on the writer’s prejudices instead of the actual facts. Sometimes the magazine’s agenda prompts the writer to distort the reports and provide the reader with a juicy story, rather than an honest one.

 

Chain D.L.K.: What did you have in mind while forging your recent collaborative release, ‘Organism’?

Arovane: Our idea was to create a sound that reflects the life of an organism. The music reflects the secrets and the beauty of life. How does it sound when a bacterium reproduces itself? I like the world of microorganisms on a microscopic scale. Porya and I wanted to create a sound that reminds us of that fascinating life of an organism.
I read that the number of Earth’s current species ranges from 10 million to 14 million, of which only about 1.2 million have been documented. There’s a lot to explore!

Porya Hatami: I remember receiving a sound from Uwe;  I liked it very much and replied something like, “This sounds like some sort of a weird breathing creature.” We started chatting about it and exchanged some thoughts and ideas about that sound and how we could expand this idea to start a new album based on it. So, the idea of creating an album called organism and the direction we wanted to take came from that conversation.

 

Porya Hatami grabbing natural sounds

courtesy of Pejman Pabarja

Chain D.L.K.: I guess there are some ‘organic’ sounds and supposedly some field recordings…if so, how did you collect them?

Arovane: I have a huge collection of field recordings and synthesized/ processed sounds. My focus during the production of ‘Organism’ was to create synthetic sounds that have an “organic” impression. Porya and I swapped sounds, field recordings and synthetic sounds that fit the acoustic concept we had in our minds. That was the starting point, a sound pool for us to create an “organism.” There are some “organic“ sounds Porya recorded. The challenge was to process sounds to integrate them in the electronic context.

Porya Hatami: I have a handy zoom recorder, and I use it to capture sound everywhere I go. I record almost anything and have made a huge collection of field recordings over the years. As I said, we exchange sounds and ideas on a daily basis, and when we are about to start a new project we create a folder and fill it with sounds and sketches that can be used as starting points.

 

Chain D.L.K.: What’s behind the idea of titling those medleys ‘rhizome’ by shifting the capital letter?

Arovane: We used this technique on the album “resonance“ released on Eter lab 2015. During the production of “Organism,” we collected a bunch of tracks that fit into the concept of interludes between the “main” tracks. To make a difference between the single tracks, we used the shifted capital letter. It reminds me of the nucleic acid sequence that represents the information which directs the functions of a living thing.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Are the tracks ‘Micro Organism’ and ‘Macro Organism’ somehow interrelated? How do the sounds mirror the idea behind their titles, in your own words?

Arovane: The idea behind the tracks was to zoom into the world of micro-organisms sound-wise, and to zoom out or back to the world of macro-organism. You can hear similar sound structures in both tracks. They are connected sound-wise. It’s fascinating that, with the micro and macro world, you will find the same structures in both worlds, zooming in and out or back and forth.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Tracks like ‘Tuber’ or ‘Mutation’ seem to have been made by means of electroacoustic items instead of purely electronics. Am I wrong?

Arovane: Yes and no. You’re right with “Mutation,” where acoustic sounds were used to create an electroacoustic soundscape. An array of high resonating delays and filters were triggered by acoustic sounds to transform them into an abstract structure. The character of “Tuber” is more organic, natural sounding. It is purely electronic and living from slight tube distortion in the background.

 

Organism cover artworkChain D.L.K.: Have you performed ‘Organism’ on live stage, by chance? If not, are you planning to do it?

Arovane: Not yet, but it would be very nice to do that. I talked to Porya about that topic before, but it is quite hard to organize a concert with that kind of electronic music. Maybe there is an interest in the times of modular synthesizers and experimental music. I would like to start a call to the people/ organizers to make it happen.

Porya Hatami: Unfortunately not; we talked about playing live together, and hopefully it will happen at some point in the future.

 

Chain D.L.K.: What’s the fil rouge joining ‘Organism’ to your previous collaborative releases?

Arovane: Porya and I established a very special way to work remotely. The fil rouge for “Organism” was to create a specific sound, based on the idea and the associations we have of organic life.

Porya Hatami: Not sure what ties this one to the other releases, because for each release we try to step in a new direction and explore areas that we’ve never worked in before. Of course, you might hear some similarities between them or find some shared elements, but our intention is to try a different approach for each new release.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Are you planning some other releases for the near future? If so, any anticipation?

Arovane: Porya and me are “sound workers.” We are “sound explorers”; that’s our motivation. Currently, we are working on a follow up to “Organism.” We both have a lot of ideas for future projects. So, there’s more to expect.

Porya Hatami: At the moment we are working on the second part of Organism for Karlrecords. The plan is to release it digitally again, plus both volumes as a specially packaged double CD.

 

Arovane on Bandcamp: arovane.bandcamp.com

Porya Hatami on Bandcamp: porya.bandcamp.com

May 282017
 

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According to Jason Grier’s introductory words about ‘Omonia’ (2016, Velvet Mode), the lovely and highly recommended debut album by Danish musician Line Gøttsche Dyrholm, “Gøttsche’s low-tech invocation of cognitive dissonance, heightened sensitivity, and circular memory finds itself squarely in the midst of our amnesiac age of digital alienation and artificial dreams. But Omonia comes across as neither a coy sarcasm nor a trenchant critique, rather, something quite original and strange; sincere and surreal in equal measure.”  Let’s see why such an analysis describes Line’s release, and let’s get to know this talented artist better.

 

Line Goettsche by Kristian Hove

courtesy of Kristian Hove

Chain D.L.K.: Hi, Line! How are you?

Line Gøttsche: Hello, Chain D.L.K. I feel good, thank you. Currently, I am on a residency in Greece, writing from the terrace of The Nordic Library at Athens, and having just served myself a cup of hot Greek coffee with milk.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Compliments on your recent release”Omonia,” but before we talk about it, let’s have a sort of wrap-up! When and why did you get closer to music?

Line Gøttsche: Since I was born, my parents have been playing records at home. We listened to a lot of folk and pop, and they were never secretive about their enthusiasm for the things we heard. It was a natural part of the enjoyment for them to verbalize what they liked about the music, and, also, I have a strong memory of their faces and their voices while the music was on – they really brightened up, became almost spellbound by the music. And of course, then, so was I. Still, I was pretty shy about music. I remember some times when I was just a few years old, and I got caught being absorbed in a song, dancing or singing along; in these situations, I was very embarrassed by myself. Now, I realize that this shyness must have had something to do with the way that I felt that music was a kind of wizard that could soften me up or open me up in a way that made me feel completely exposed.

 

Chain D.L.K.: How did you discover your voice? Do you remember the first person who was astonished by your voice, and the moment when he or she had this privilege?

Line Gøttsche: From when I was 6 till I was 15 years old, I went to a very basic primary school in the city I grew up in. There, what my friends listened to were mostly artists like the Spice Girls or Maria Carey. You know, female singers with tight, loud voices. At this point, my vocal practice was limited to being an alto in a church choir; I was more of an instrumentalist by then, playing the piano and the violin (until a certain point in my teens when I began to carry my violin in a guitar bag, and then soon after switched over to electric guitar). It was not until I began high school and became enrolled in the students’ jazz band that, one afternoon, the school’s best pianist, in a very low-key manner, said to me that I had a good voice and a fine way of using it.

 

Line Goettsche by Mathias Dyhr

courtesy of Mathias Dyhr

Chain D.L.K.: Have you trained it in some academy or by some wise guide?

Line Gøttsche: I have studied with a couple of singing teachers throughout the years, but I consider my relationships with certain people a much more vital part of my musical education. These people are either musicians or music lovers – they are family and friends who have expressed and communicated their fascination about music or certain aspects of it to me. Music performance is about technique, of course, but it also has something to do with the ability to let one’s channels be wide open. By this, I mean that it is, I think, one of the most important things for a musician to keep a breeding ground for the connections between different spheres in oneself. As a musician, you must be able to merge all these components of silent sensibilities that you hold, such as the sense of phrasing, intonation, rhythm and tempo, with feelings and inner life into one braiding. There must be a correspondence between your body, your mind and all the past and present held in them, that will finally end up in this one stream to be carried from yourself and out to everyone else in the form of music. I think that the way I have learned about these correspondences and the art of combination is through experiencing how my relationships vibrate together with music in different ways.

 

Chain D.L.K.: When you perform, do you feel that music guides your voice, or that you let the music chase after it?

Line Gøttsche: I feel my music’s movements are characterized by expansion, rather than linearity. This structure is present in Omonia’s motivic dimension as well as its form, and it will be my answer to this question as well: I do not see the one thing in front of the other – no, I perceive it as a mutual vibration, an oscillation between instrument and music.

 

Chain D.L.K.: You trained as a violinist as well…do you think that the understanding of an instrument is a plus for a singer?

Line Gøttsche: Yes, for sure.

 

Chain D.L.K.: …related to the last question, can a single instrument have an influence on the voice or the perception of it, in your opinion?

Line Gøttsche: Certainly. It is impossible to separate the facts that I am a former violinist who is now a singer and a composer from each other. Too, I believe that my reveling in phrasing acoustic instruments on Omonia has something to do with the fact that, in my early twenties, I worked in the field of electronic music driven by beats and synths.

 

Line Goettsche by Mathias Dyhr

courtesy of Mathias Dyhr

Chain D.L.K.: Let’s get deeper into ‘Omonia’… I read you kept some songs in the drawer for ages before its release… why?

Line Gøttsche: Being confident enough to finally break out of the traditional way of creating pop music took me a lot of time. To reach this point, I had to go all the way to Greece, where I was so lucky to have my own grand piano, a roof terrace and an amazing mountain view to myself for one and a half months. Although the ideas for Omonia had been germinating in me for a long time, this situation, plus the warmth I was met with by the Greeks and in the Mediterranean climate, was an essential component in the process of making the record. Try to imagine this scenario: I came from Scandinavia in March and arrived in this already blooming city with orange trees in the streets and poppy-sprinkled meadows. My whole existence was dragged to mirror this flourishing lushness, and, luckily, the scene offered enough space and warmth for it to grow as wildly as it could. So, the main process of the composition began here, and basically, it went on until the recordings were finished. Also, as I mentioned before, I became more self-assured during these Greek weeks. This means that, in the following years up to the release, I held a stoic approach to things that made me able to do whatever other things I needed to see to alongside the creation of Omonia: I naturally had to earn a living, and besides that, finance the production of the release. I also studied language science at the university and took courses in music composition at CalArts. So, none of the songs were ever in the drawer; the process was just extended in a way that I, with hindsight, believe has had a ripening effect on the final release in all its dimensions.

 

Chain D.L.K.: What’s the meaning of its title?

Line Gøttsche: Initially, I picked Omonia because I was fascinated by the word itself. It is structured around these clear, clean vowels, o, i and a, but at the same time, it has a drama to it. It feels deep, ominous and alluring. This could have been a reason in itself, but it also made sense in the way that Omonia is the name of an interesting but also slightly sketchy area of Athens. Again, the word echoes this duality that is a thematic key element of the work that reflects upon (the relation to) a double person.

 

Chain D.L.K.: You could expect a question about ‘Rome’ in an interview led by a half-Italian citizen…was the decadent beauty of that city a source of inspiration for that song? If yes, how?

Line Gøttsche: I have heard from Roman Italians that Rome can be a hard nut to crack, but to me, having experienced it primarily as a tourist, only from its surface, it has a soothing beauty, a generous and romantic schwung that is definitely reflected in this section of the composition.

 

Chain D.L.K.: I read you carefully picked each musician playing instruments in ‘Omonia’…can you tell us something about the criteria for your choices and some unusual circumstances justifying those choices?

Line Gøttsche: Since Omonia is strongly affected by the fact that it is my first full work as a solo artist, I think that I unconsciously sensed the importance of balancing its soundscape with something from outside. This is why I picked three highly personal musicians for the ensemble that is playing on the recordings. I already knew the two stringers, Live and Niels, who I had been playing with since I started out as a solo artist. They are extremely disciplined and almost telepathic, I sometimes feel, classically trained musicians, and I was aware from the start that they would be the ones to play the string parts. Later on, as an impulse, I decided to add a saxophone. My boyfriend, who is a visual artist, mentioned that he had once had a jazz saxophonist playing a two-hour long solo for an exhibition opening, and by then I knew that this musician would be the right one to add a hint of flighty spontaneousness to the very well-planned record. This is how the music ended up being performed by musicians coming from spheres as different as classical music, pop and experimental jazz. This kind of collage-y approach worked out very fine, I think.

 

Chain D.L.K.: …and what were the weirdest events inspiring some of the songs we can here on ‘Omonia’?

Line Gøttsche: Riding alone on a night bus from Lithuania to Berlin in January 2013.

 

Line Goettsche by Mathias Dyhr

courtesy of Mathias Dyhr

Chain D.L.K.: Have you performed ‘Omonia’ on a live stage? Some memorable feedback?

Line Gøttsche: Until now, I have played (parts of) Omonia live very rarely. I am continuously amazed by the concept of the fact that my music is being listened to, so I find every kind of feedback memorable.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Music plays a major role in your songs, as far as I can tell while listening to each of the five songs on ‘Omonia.’ Have you ever imagined a different musical “wearing” for any of them?

Line Gøttsche: No. I have a vague memory of the period where I decided the instrumentation for the piece, but this part of the process was very easy and natural and not characterized by any kind of doubt.

 

Chain D.L.K.: People in art experience a sort of ecstasy when they meet beauty… Have you ever gawked while listening to your voice?

Line Gøttsche: I am aware of the fact that I have a good voice, but I think that I feel about it the same way as people living their everyday lives in Rome: I know its complexities.

 

Chain D.L.K.: Any work in progress?

Line Gøttsche: Definitely! Here, back in Athens, I am growing the textual part of a new work in a way that could, if you imagine my words as paint, be described as putting blobs of watercolor onto the paper while they slowly coalesce.

visit Line Gøttsche on the web at www.linegoettsche.com

May 232017
 

RUDOLF HEIMANN – TOUCH THE SKY
(Spheric Music SMCD 8305)

Remastered by EROC
including 2 bonus tracks

Here are the details:

release date: 9. June 2017

Rudolf Heimann

Touch The Sky

SMCD 8305

Gesamtzeit/Duration: 72:58 Min.

Style: Electronic / Synthesizer (Alan Parsons Project, Mike Oldfield)

EAN-Code: 4260107470762

01. Skywalker  4'23
02. Dragonflight 6'02
03. Fresh Air 4'02
04. Too Late To Turn 4'24
05. Brainflight 6'12
06. Heaven's Gate 6'24
07. Ain't Easy To Fly 6'05
08. Follow The Rainbow 6'39
09. View From A Hill 2'09
10. Dream Chip 4'21
11. Last Chance 5'10
12. Strange Delight 7'40
13. Midnight Drive 3'31
14. Chariots Of The Gods 5'08



Rudolf Heimann looks back to a long musical career having been busy in 
various projects and various genres. When I get asked what his most 
amazing solo album is, my answer is quite prompt: *Touch The Sky* 
(from 1992).

The melodic and harmonic tracks are easily accessible and are presented 
in an extraordinary sound, that you want to listen to it again and again.

In comparison to Berlin School albums here you find punchy, optimistic 
titles, that are more rhythmic and sometimes include hints of rock 
music. But the album features also a lot of dreamy titles that enriches 
the varying structure of the album. Spheric Music appreciates having the 
artist convinced for the release of this jewel. This album becomes even 
more precious because it has been remastered by the well known producer 
*EROC* which makes it a real listening pleasure.

Bernd Kistenmacher (Musique Intemporelle) comment to the new release:

„A music that is not just trendy stuff. On the contrary, it is music 
that you can discover again and again at any time. Touch The Sky is a 
good example for such timeless music.“

This album has been out of stock for a very long time. Now you can get 
this remastered release including 2 bonus tracks.

Further Heimann CDs on Spheric Music:
Twilight Voyager (Spheric Music SMCD 8303), Tide (Spheric Music SMCD 8304)

www.sphericmusic.de
May 192017
 

Berlin’s own Marco Haas aka T.RAUMSCHMIERE made an irreparable impression globally in the 00’s as a sawtoothed, ANTI-rave radical thanks to his immense stage antics and larger-than-life releases on Novamute. Since then, Haas has established himself as a contemporary with emotive, dark ambient tales on his own imprints Shitkatapult/Albumlabel.

KOMPAKT’s love affair with Haas goes back to our earliest days. Some of his first tracks were released on KOMPAKT in the form of two raw EP’s entitled “Bolzplatz” (KOM021 – 2000) and “Musick” (KOM037 2001). These two formative releases elevated the “Schaffel” sound to raw and shameless places we never could have imagined. The results set a tidal wave in motion that to this day remains one of KOMPAKT’s most infamous legacies.

In an off-chance reunion with Haas in his studio, we learnt about what he’d been doing since the “Monstertruckdriver” days. It turned out he’s been ever so busy outside of the mainstream working with the likes of Dieter Meier of Yello, Caspar Brötzmann, Andreas Dorau, Fraktus, Ofrin or Barbara Morgenstern and his recent work with Ulli Bomans aka Schieres under the SHRUBBN!! monicker. On the way out, he passed over his 2015 self-titled album – which proceeded to blow our minds. It was mutually decided that it’s time for him to return home.

May 19, 2017, will see KOMPAKT releasing T.RAUMSCHMIERE’s new, epic solo full-length HEIMAT. It presents another side of his work which was always there, but never got that much airtime: the artist, the author, the composer with the crystal-clear sound. HEIMAT is a stunning techno album that neither excludes Ambient, nor gets reduced to constant ass kicking. It’s perhaps the best recording so far from this man who asks so deeply, so extensively, so much. And at some point even answers.

 

http://www.kompakt.fm/releases/heimat