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being friends and admirers of each other’s work for a long time, electronic music composer / visual artist alva noto (carsten nicolai) and composer / voice-artist blixa bargeld (also known as singer of einstürzende neubauten and guitarist of nick cave and the bad seeds) decided to join forces to initiate a collaborative project in 2007.
together they developed a musical concept based on the combination of improvisation and abstraction. the impulsive live performance of blixa bargeld and the elaborated beat structures and sound landscapes of alva noto merge to a surprising and unexpected result. working on their own experimental material that gains its strength from the spontaneity of the live-performance of bargeld’s voice as well as rethinking traditional songs in their own special manner, they deliver an outstanding and inspiring musical blend for their audience.
“crystalline noise formations. phrases, words, syllables of pure sound isolated until normal sense disappears, leaving new, unexpected abstractions to emerge. [...] the most suggestive and nuanced version of ‘i wish i was a mole in the ground’ since bob dylan.”
— sam davies (the wire 12/09, uk)
the collaboration first staged in september 2007 when they united for a special appearance in san francisco to perform at recombinant media labs studios. since then they have recorded several tracks, five of which will be released on a preliminary ep on raster-noton (r-n 120) in spring 2010. a full length album with 10 tracks (r-n 121) will be released some weeks later. the release will be followed by a live tour at various festivals and concert halls in europe in june/september 2010.
visual artist/electronic musician carsten nicolai (born 1965 in karl-marx-stadt) performs and records using the pseudonyms noto and alva noto. described as ‘metal machine music of a most beautiful kind’, nicolai’s powerfully synaesthetic live performances combine minimal electronic sounds and real-time visualisations. alva noto has performed in many of the world’s most prestigious spaces and has won a number of highly regarded prizes for art and electronic music. he collaborated with the likes of ryuichi sakamoto, blixa bargeld, ryoji ikeda, mika vainio, michael nyman and thomas knak. with olaf bender and frank bretschneider he founded the record label raster-noton in 1999 and runs the pioneering label ‘supergroup’ signal.
blixa bargeld was born 1959 in berlin. in 1980 he formed the group einstürzende neubauten as lead vocalist. from 1984 to 2003 he was guitarist of nick cave and the bad seeds. he has performed numerous concert-tours through europe, north and south america, australia and japan. he works as composer, author, actor, singer, musician, performer and lecturer in almost any field of interpretative art.
r-n121 mimikry (compact disc)
r-n120 ret marut handshake (12" vinyl maxi)