Recondite — Corvus EP (November 11th, 2016)
≡♠≡ Lorenz Brunner, a Bavarian producer of lean but intricate and melodic techno. Released albums on Acid Test and Ghostly.
Birth name: Lorenz Brunner
Location: Bavaria, Germany
Album release: November 11th, 2016
Record Label: Ghostly International
1. Capable 7:16
2. Kauz 6:54
3. Corvus 7:11
4. Huibu 4:15
5. Capable (Ricardo Donoso Clemency Version) 6:12
≡♠≡ After spending the past three years cutting acclaimed records for such esteemed imprints as Innervisions, Hotflush, and Acid Test, Recondite has rejoined the Ghostly International fold with an EP that builds on the robust field recordings and pale, moonlit melodies of the Berlin producer’s breakthrough LP Hinterland. Named after the foreboding family of birds that includes ravens and crows, Corvus is a chilling listen bookended by two very different versions of a spellbound new track called “Capable.” While the original version is aimed squarely at shadow~drenched dancefloors, Ricardo Donoso’s remix mutes Recondite’s skeletal drums and restless rhythms in favor of richly woven strings, ghostly ambient grooves, and frost–bitten samples. It’s as if we’re drifting without a dance loop to light the way — caught in the web of a complex sound bank that’s cinematic yet strangely subdued.
≡♠≡ The middle section of Corvus is mesmerizing as well, as “Kauz” shuffles and shimmers in front of a star~splashed skyline, “Huibu” casts wooden sticks against poison~tipped synth parts, and the EP’s title track melds the harsh cries of Bavarian birds with a tense beat. And while Recondite admits his new material is “a bit more serious” than his last couple 12~inches — it was loosely inspired by everything from The Revenant’s Ryuichi Sakamoto soundtrack to Max Frisch’s heady novel Homo Faber, after all — the Rottal~Inn native insists there’s a light at the end of this particular tunnel. Or as he puts it, “Melancholic doesn’t necessarily mean dark. Music can be happy and moody.”
By Corinne Przybyslawski, Published Nov 09, 2016 / Score: 8
≡♠≡ Named after the foreboding family of birds that includes ravens and crows, Corvus is a project that builds on a juxtaposition of sinewy field recordings and forlorn, minimalist traditions, an unconventional combination that drove the critical acclaim of Recondite’s breakthrough LP, Hinterland. After three years of releases with esteemed imprints such as Innervisions, Hotflush and Acid Test, the Berlin producer rejoins the Ghostly International fold with an EP that continues to experiment with melding the harsh cries of Bavarian birds with the assertive tempos of minimal techno.
≡♠≡ Traces of organic recordings are sporadically dispersed throughout the record, lending the minimalist construction of tracks like “Corvus” a gothic overtone. Understated, reverberating synths interchangeably mingle with gentle mallets to drive melodies over robust rhythm patterns. Bookended by two renditions of “Capable,” Ricardo Donoso’s remix numbs the impact of Recondite’s skeletal drums and restless rhythms in favour of richly woven strings that cloak the record’s ghostly aesthetic with an ominous yet progressive ambience.
≡♠≡ Drawing from the soundscapes of Berlin by moonlight, the record is pale, cohesive and regimented, as best realized in “Kauz.” The EP implements pensive and cinematic themes to lend each brooding track its meekness and sincerity. Meditative and minimal, its brisk pace mitigates the record’s gloom.
≡♠≡ The Rottal~Inn native insists that “melancholic doesn’t necessarily mean dark. Music can be happy and moody.” Loosely inspired by Ryuichi Sakamoto’s soundtrack for The Revenant, Corvus manages to experiment within a deliberately understated framework, reconfiguring expectations of the genre. ≡♠≡ http://exclaim.ca/
♦ Alongtime collector of music, Recondite had his first experience with drum machines and hardware synths just a few years ago in a small studio next to the forest in lower Bavaria. It wasn’t long after that he moved to Berlin to build up Plangent Records, where the artist rapidly established his name. Plangent #001 was well–received, and with three strong EPs released in 2011, he grabbed the attention of Scuba, who included “Backbone” in his DJ KiCKS mix and quickly put out two Recondite remixes on Hot Flush. On Acid, his full~length debut, was delivered in 2012 via the sleek Los Angeles imprint, Acid Test. The Absurd Recordings sublabel had already featured revered releases from Donato Dozzy and Tin Man, and Recondite’s LP garnered a great deal of positive feedback from the press and major producers alike. ♦ Continuing to release on his own Plangent series, he also put out the EC10 EP on Dystopian in early 2013 — a record that’s as tough as it is experimental. Progressively, this all lead up to his sophomore LP and first release on Ghostly International, Hinterland. The record acknowledges the finests moments in his previous releases, and ultimately creates what he believes is something that captures the personality of Rottal~Inn — a district in southeastern Bavaria, Germany and his hometown. It is easy to agree that Recondite has been playing his cards right. His earlier releases on Plangent were strong, and lead him to release with an assortment of labels that have drawn attention to his productions from a variety of audiences. With a growing demand from international bookings, Hinterland — out in November 2013 on Ghostly International — continues his ongoing streak of carefully crafted output.