ALVA NOTO: Univrs (Raster-Noton)

themilkman on Oct 21st 2011 01:35 am

Alva Noto: Univrs

Raster-Noton 2011
14 Tracks. 62mins43secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD Spotify: STRM

All through his career, Alva Noto’s Carsten Nicolai has focussed his work around a variety of concepts, some more developed or assumed than others, which have allowed him to explore the outer reaches of experimental minimalist electronic music. Univrs is the second instalment in a series of releases based on language forms, and follows Unitxt published in 2008, a record in which Nicolai developed complex rhythmic structures had been partly generated from Excel, Words and Powerpoint documents after the original data held in these files had been converted into sound.

Univrs stems from a similar idea, but the original medium is different, and to a certain extent, the process is reversed, with sound controlling images. This album started as a live audio visual experiment for which custom hardware and software was develop in order for audio signals to trigger unique colour patterns to be projected in real time. Continue Reading »

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themilkman on Dec 13th 2009 07:52 pm

The 2009 Review

Twelve months compiled into just twenty albums. From the thousands of records released each year, it is difficult to get even a handful on the site, and even more difficult to decide which ones were the best of the lot. This is however the twenty albums that have marked 2009 for themilkfactory.

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themilkman on Jul 22nd 2009 10:36 pm

Alva Noto + Ryuichi Sakamoto with Ensemble Modern: utp_

Raster-Noton 2009
10 Tracks. 71mins57secs / DVD 112mins07

Icon: arrow CD+DVD: | Boomkat | Download:  iTunes | Boomkat

utp_ is the fourth collaboration between legendary Japanese innovator Ryuichi Sakamoto and German sound artist Carsten Nicolai, as Alva Noto, following Vrioon in 2002 and Insen and Revep in 2005. In 2007, the pair were commissioned an audio-visual performance with eminent German contemporary orchestra Ensemble Modern, to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the city of Mannheim, situated in the state of Baden-Württemberg, in the South West of Germany. Released as a CD, presenting the various compositions, and DVD, documenting both the live performance, complete with synchronised visuals projected at the back of the orchestra, and utp_ Tryout, a behind the scene documentary showing every aspect of the preparation for the performance, from composition to the creation of the visual components, utp_ is quite a big piece of work, totally in contrast with the minimal aesthetic of the work itself. Continue Reading »

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ALVA NOTO: Xerrox Vol. 2 (Raster-Noton)

Max Schaefer on Mar 23rd 2009 11:13 pm

Alva Noto: Xerrox Vol. 2

Xerrox Vol. 2
Raster-Noton 2009
11 Tracks.  66mins32 secs

Carsten Nicolai’s conceptual bent and experimental drive get relativized in a larger whole on this, the second edition of the Xerrox series.  The former, led again by Nicolai’s interest in clarity, precision, and finesse, are made to bleed into a previously untapped luxuriance.

Samples from Michael Nyman, Stephen O’Malley and Ryuichi Sakamoto are processed to varying degrees, and often occupy a delicate, fragile place between their original coherent identity and a unintelligible, anonymous state.  As a result, though the composerly feel for pace and dynamics is apparent, and though the arcs are finely wrought, the skillfully maintained ambiguity of these musical interfaces ensures that dubiously unresolved tensions characterize them equally as much. Continue Reading »

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