What is music? What can it do, does it do, does it want here? What makes noise music and music being relevant, becoming a feeling and indispensability? The connection between music and people always needs context, always needs the right moment. It rarely arises only in the blunt connection of stimulus and reaction. But what is context, what is the right moment, if music is simply always there, always all around? What is a valuable discovery, if anything new is simply dragged into the brain by an assembly line. Day after day, week after week. Your Daily Mixtapes here. A few unknowns there, a bit of distinction on top. Come on, don’t argue, we know you like it.
Pop, Crust, Jazz, Noise, House, Neoclassical, Soul, UK drill – all of them already permeated by the same logic of distribution, exploitation, and relevance. While here and there a few stubborn gatekeepers may still claim residual significance, review after review. The algorithm has already neatly preselected it. And it endlessly shoots out new discoveries and themed lists, which in the best case even ignite briefly before they burn out again. And the modes of distribution punch through the ways of production.“You can’t record music once every three to four years and think that’s going to be enough,“ says Spotify founder Daniel Ek. Onward, onward, content, content.
So much for context. Now here’s the music. „Just write that it’s his most personal work,“ producer and sound designer Antonio de Spirt gasps in a voice message, apparently recorded while jogging. „Or that it’s just what you get when you want,“ he gasps, „constant output and fast audio content. Fire & Forget. And that it’s art. You just have to say it often enough, and becomes true.“ The „LBF Tapes“ are all of that. Personal work. System criticism. Art assertion. A collection of happy and not-so-happy coincidences. One or two afternoons with sketches, sample packs and an all-smashing modular system. The direct path to the label. Divided opinions and unconditional will. Finally: a very good because very consistent joke.
But the four EPs summarized here – / | \ and ( – they are much more than just a very personal impertinence. De Spirt’s „LBF Tapes“ allows itself sixteen relentless zooms on moments that otherwise only become music in flowing combination. Isolated bass drums, pads, surfaces, bass chords, magnified, repeated, stretched and torn. Individual moments become surfaces, become soundscapes, become patterns and noises. Momentary beats arise and pass, a chord hangs in time, everything disturbs and tugs until it suddenly tips over into being meditative. And back again. „LBF Tapes“ consistently skips through itself and finally asserts itself in the unexplored (so far, probably for good reason), but – excuse me – nevertheless very wicked field of tension between sound art and ambient, between atonal and insectoids, between structuralism and cheerful fart humor. And as mercilessly digital and cool as it all is, you can always hear the hand on the knob, the joy of the sound explosion, the very manual granular analysis. His most personal work, in fact.
Beyond all this, certainly very important references: Klara Lewis, Einstürzende Neubauten, SØS Gunver Ryberg, Mushihimesama Futari in Ultra Mode, Bohren & the Club of Gore, the language of the aliens in Denis Villeneuve’s „Arrival“, a call to a very large fax machine, a totally scratched Fennesz CD in the glove compartment, Merzbow on a package holiday, scrolling through the SFX list in Street Fighter II, a corrupted version of Richard MacDuff’s „Anthem“ software dubbing Daniel Ek’s bank statements, the question „What is music? “ at the beginning of the label’s press release, music itself.
/ – August 6th, 2021
| – August 13th, 2021
\ – August 20th, 2021
( – August 27th, 2021