Tobias Reber – Backup Aura (Hyperfunction)

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This is some weird clipped music, little stabs of computer manipulated sound, a disjoint, bizarre loops of field recordings and digitalia, all carefully composed, there’s a certain tautness in the composition. Nothing feels random uncontrolled or messy. Perhaps the word is clarity. A clarity of vision to make this highly unconventional electro acoustic music. It’s the debut album from Swiss based sound artist Tobias Reber, formerly a guitarist, nowadays a digital laptop artist and member of German group Centrozoon. It’s quite an astonishing debut. Each track is a different sound world, a different approach, making his music incredibly difficult to define. He’s working with samples of different lengths and clarity that he then processes and arranges with, using everything from sounds from his own mouth to drums, to field recordings. Out of the blue after a dense drone piece out comes some heavy beats and you couldn’t be more surprised, it can be subtle and building one track, the next loud and raucous.

There’s also an occasional melodic element to his tunes, almost despite their algorithmic structures, as well as a strange joy in imagining that these long winded multi source repetitions were some killer synth patch. It’s really peculiar, like he’s used the computer to make his samples feel organic and highly present and less mechanical, that he’s then spliced and arranged in mechanical ways. It’s a strange contradiction, yet the range and unique arrangement of these samples is endlessly fascinating.

Bob Baker Fish

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Bob is the features editor of Cyclic Defrost. He is also evil. You should not trust the opinions of evil people.

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