Mirko Uhlig/N(10) - Sanddorn - OUT NOW!

EXO71/GW26 | 7" clear vinyl | 2009 | 7,00 €

NEW! The first "collaboration" between Mirko Uhlig and [multer]-guitarist N is out now as a transparent split-7" called "Sanddorn". This little gem is published in cooperation with Genesungswerk.

  A. Untitled (by N) (4'03)
  B. Untitled (by Mirko Uhlig) (5'33)

About the record

Sanddunes and sea buckthorn - at the moment Mirko Uhlig and N are setting off together for the field trip. First contact came about some initially anonymous disptach-coincidence at the end of 2006. But before the grapes of (factual) collaboration get thrown under the feet of the listenership, the split-concipated single "Sanddorn" ("sea buckthorn") presents the current motives of the two artists as short essences filtered through the tea strainer, as seaweed, as negigibly stroke of the brush on remaining cardboard.
The N-side features some bucolic farsightednesses over a nearly pastoral landscape. Here and there a bird stops in the sky, so that the listener can cull it slow-handed from the firmament. The feet get lined by milky spume.
When one has a look beneath this round it gets apparently detected by the nose (Uhlig's side): Dull tones out of a musty old building's cellar on which lays the mantle of mildew in fast motion. Soft, fleecy and unfit for consumption. A tribute to the rural lady. Lost in time and thought.
The music, as transparent as the carrier material.


Black #50:
"Nachdem es Jahre um den (MULTER)-Gitarristen Helmut Neidhardt alias N windstill geworden war, scheint 2009 ja sein Jahr zu werden, denn fast gleichzeitig erscheinen gleich 3 Platten mit seiner Beteiligung und weitere sind noch angekündigt. Auf der überaus schicken wie transparente Split-Single zusammen mit MIRKO UHLIG (AALFANG MIT PFERDEKOPF) bietet er ebensolche Gitarren-Drones, die leider viel zu kurz, aber als Momentaufnahme einer Sanddüne am Meer herrlich herb sind. Die Seite von Mirko Uhlig ist dagegen verhuschter und filigran klimpert da ein präpariertes Klavier in einer Altbauwohnung, so melancholisch schön, das fast die Zeit stehen bleibt. Auf die geplante richtige Kollaboration der beiden Musiker bin ich jetzt umsomehr gespannt."

"Eine sehr schöne transparente 7″ mit Pianotracks mit Widerhaken auf der einen und rauschig ruhig warmen Ambientszenerien auf der anderen Seite. Wenn ich mir denke, es gibt diese Welt, in der so etwas als Single Sinn macht, dann Hifive Dalai Lama. Sehr schön auch das Cover, und die Musik ist einfach bezaubernd friedfertig, aber dennoch voller Spannung."

Auf Abwegen:
"(...) Ns Track auf der Split-7″ (in wunderbarem klaren Vinyl) ist leider so kurz und skizzenhaft, dass man sich mindestens einen Lock Groove zum Ende gewünscht hätte, um den Effekt zu genießen. Der Versuch war hier, eben nicht über Dauer und Repetition Wirkung zu erzielen, sondern bereits in einem kurzen Droneausschnitt die inneren Merkmale der sirrenden Klänge zu zeigen. Dies ist nur zum Teil geglückt, denn ein wesentliches Gestaltungselement sind nun mal die genannten Eckpfeiler. Mirko Uhlig schließt sich da gleich an und scheint einen Feldman’schen Klaviertupfer in zart-verlorener Schleife dagegen zu stellen.
Für beide Releases gilt: uneingeschränkte Empfehlung!!!"

"(...) When it comes to music, the short form is mostly considered inferior. I can well remember how surprised I was when Mirko Uhlig first showed me an Organum 7inch Vinyl single at a visit to Cologne's famed A-Musik record store. A drone piece of barely four minutes – would it work? Could it work? Since then, of course, my perception of musical miniatures has changed considerably. Not least thanks to the tireless efforts of Bremen-based, 7inch-obsessed label Drone Records. In their catalogue, currently approaching its 100th entry, the format has turned into a playground for sonic metaphors and a self-contained cosmos whose perceptional dimensions always appeared far more extensive than its physical container suggested. For Uhlig, tapping into this aesthetic was as natural as breathing. Even though his full-length „Genmaicha“ on Mystery Sea may have been more dreamy and accessible, it was his Platon-inspired 2006 release „Fragment 36“ on Drone Records (still under the name of Aalfang mit Pferdekopf) which would really mark a modest breakthrough in terms of medial attention. Three years on, „Sanddorn“, a split with befriended Guitar-Dronist N now finally follows in the footsteps of this praised predecessor.

It may seem strange if I should be writing about „Sanddorn“ myself, as it is published on an imprint I co-run (Ex Ovo). But with this release, I consciously stayed out of the entire production process to allow myself to be just as surprised as any other listener. You notice is straight away: Uhlig hasn't rested on his laurels. His contribution to the collaboration is defined by an even more heightened sense of minimalism than ever before (if one discounts for the fact that both tracks on „Genmaicha“ were, in fact, culled from a single Organ chord, that is). The piece opens with a three-note Piano motive, possibly inspired by one of his favourite William Basinski-works, „The Garden of Brokenness“. Glassy, ethereal harmonics wrap themselves around the Piano, casting it in milky light and hinting at the typical gradual accumulation of various layers and elements. In a complete turnaround, however, Uhlig discontinues the proceedings and fades the music into silence for a few seconds. Then, the Leitmotif returns. This time, however, it has been pitched down and what formerly sounded bucolic and melancholic now seems withered, bluesed and torn. A wistful Flute tone is accompanying the first note of the theme – was it there from the beginning? It is questions like this which keep the music spinning in your head long after the needle has left the record.

Helmut Neidhard's (aka N) part of the equation is, if anything, even more stripped to the bone. Delicate, swelling drone-breaths are tangled up in a process of mutual entanglement, circling round each other like water droplets in zero-gravity. Just when the piece seems poised for liftoff, with a bass-motive indicating stability and direction, the journey ends. With it, the entire conception of the track collapses in a beguilingly enigmatic anti-climax. Fleetingness, the tactile tension of transition and the beauty of beginnings are key themes on a composition, which never quite prepares you for its sudden decay. Somehow, one always feels as though one had missed something – a clue, a hint - on the way. This mystique, however, is exactly what provides it with the necessary depth and makes you want to come back to it again and again. With this in mind, these two piece certainly wet one's appetite for a Uhlig/N 12inch later this year."
Tobias Fischer

Vital Weekly #695:
"(...) The format of 7" might not be the right format for this kind of music, but N and Mirko Uhlig give it a try anyway. Its a bit unclear who does what here, but maybe there is no link: 'recorded and mixed separately 2008 and 2009'. N's side sounds less like guitars, or perhaps: less than on 'Trischen', and a bit more electronic. Uhlig (formerly known as Aalfang Mit Pferdekopf) plays the piano on his side, distant and quiet. Electronics? Perhaps somewhere. Maybe you should play both sides at the same time? Curious little item, on transparent vinyl and a nice full color cover on transparent paper."
Frans de Waard

Aemag #9:
"Mirko Uhligs Beitrag zur Sanddorn 7“ sprengt alles bisher gehörte. Ein melancholischer Pianoloop wird von unterschwelligen Drones begleitet, lediglich die Anschlagdynamik variiert die Dominanz der Töne, modernes Effekthaschertum sucht man zwischen den verlorenen Tönen vergebens. Nach der Hälfte der Uhlig’schen Seite ändert sich die Sonate, wird zu einer breiten John Carpenter’esquen Stimmung, unterlegt mit schiffssirenenhaften Drones und dem begleitenden Knistern der transparenten Schallplatte. Die Szenerie endet fast schon unsensibel abrupt, die Grundstimmung hallt dafür umso länger im Gehörgang nach.
N, der Gitarrist von [multer], verlegt umseitig seine Stimmung auf frequenzangereicherte Dronelandschaften, eingehüllt in das höhengefilterte Schneetreiben einsamer, weiter Prärien. Es wabert und summt, die Intensität der Töne bestimmt das Feedback der verwendeten hochgestimmten Gitarrenseiten und dennoch ist die Musik so lieblich dezent, dass sie guten Gewissens als positiv gefärbte Möbelmusik gelten darf. Das Artwork, gedruckt auf Folien umschließt die transparente Single im übrigen hervorragend visuell, die Musik wirkt genauso. Klarer als Wasser und das eisige Treiben der auf dem Einband abgelichteten Sträucher im Winter wirkt erstaunlich als Wechselbeziehung zwischen Bild und Ton. 5/5"
Thorsten Soltau

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