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blir are mark fell and mat steel. most people also know them under the name snd. like no other project before scape they stand for the propagandised clicks and cut sound. however as label mate terre theamlitz points out, these "unwilling godmothers of clicks and cuts" are keen to distance themselves from the genre they are often thought to have spawned.
mat and mark met at sheffield city polytechnic where they studied 3d design and video art respectively. together with jeremy potter (shirt trax) and robert baker (clock dva/anti group) they formed an artists collective called non-axiomatic living room (aka premium leisure), the label on which the blir recordings were released. this group staged a series of installations, radio broadcasts and performances.
blir was originally conceived of as a side project to snd, an open platform offering the two a means of exploring collaborative works. the first two records in this series were made with frank bretschneider (aka komet) and jeremy potter (with whom mark works with as shirt trax).
the two blir recordings released in 1999 featured minimal design covers and anonymous layout, revealing perhaps that blir as well as snd are rather names of projects than names of a band. indeed, a key theme of these works was the notion of the anonymous collective, amongst which the rudimentary elements of digital working were distributed - synthesizer patches, notes, softwares and so on.
in 2005 the project continues. probably not as anonymous as they would like, mat and mark return to their roots when relocating old session material, cutting and re-editing it in a new way. by recording new tracks blir pursues a more radical aesthetic approach than SND. there is no format of a song, the arrangement is minimalist, music structures are cut into short loops, are analyzed and kept - efficiently and energetically.
recently mark and mat toured with autechre and rob hall around europe and america, the two are currently working on new material as well as several art projects.
r-n064 raster edits (compact disc)