It is no longer pertinent to think of a normal music distribution model, nor is it to expect a standard method of acquiring these aforementioned sounds in 2008. AGF’s latest release exemplifies this more so than any other of the ‘free but please donate if you like us’ examples set by Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails. Dance Floor Drachen is a manifesto of sorts, a call to a disenchanted and disengaged listening public that at once toys with the idea of financial dues payable to their favourite artists, and the constant desire to obtain something for nothing.
Antye Greie’s (AGF) fifth album strays little from the experimental template set on her first record Head Slash Bauch, on which she converted HTML into abstract “electronic poetry”. Greie subtly blends strands of minimal techno and avant-garde abstraction with considerable warmth – even if it is behind the cold veneer of her reflection on the value of music. Simply gaze at the track titles for any length of time and attempt to piece them together for an indication of her mindset on this. ‘Ripping This Track’, for instance, has Greie sampling an unnamed Hollywood action film to strengthen this proposal further.
Much of Dance Floor Drachen is also Greie’s musings on the link between sound and language, concepts of glossolalia and other such linguistic elements. ‘If You’ is as danceable as it is thought provoking, charting the peculiar construction of the song with a repetitive “if if’ that keeps time as well as posing the key question of the album.
‘Than Reconsider’ was a track originally written for Luomo but never released, and sets a pulsating wobble against her clear vocal, a rarity for an artist who enjoys cutting, mashing and quantising her voice as much as she does her beats. It’s as much Ellen Allien as it is Miss Kittin, and all the more evocative for it even if Greie’ aesthetic is more about the temporal space than anything else. After all, how can anyone put a price on the intangible nature of sound?
Dance Floor Drachen is available as a ‘free’ download from AGF’s website here