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This weekend I’ll mostly be listening to… Biosphere November 7, 2009

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Culture, This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....

I think I got the album Patashnik by Norweigian ambient techno musician Geir Jenssen, otherwise known as Biosphere, in 1995 or 1996. I found this second hand in Macs in George’s Street Arcade, along with Kula Shaker’s first album. I’ve probably listened to the later a half dozen times since, but Patashnik has been a constant on my musical media ever since. As has its predecessor Microgravity.

Unlike later work by him which tips straight into ambient this has a solid grounding in beats, albeit not on all the tracks. And that, for me at least, gives it an edge that strengthens the music. Somehow it forces one to pay attention where other ambient works can do the opposite.

The word Patashnik is supposedly meant to mean ‘traveller’ or ‘goner’ in Russian, particularly in the context of space exploration. Some say it doesn’t actually exist and is a creation of his.

Listening to the chilly keyboards and sampled snippets of sound somehow that seems appropriate. What are we listening to amidst the keyboards and samples of astronauts? It’s hard to say. There’s a quality of otherness that runs through it. I could say that Biosphere is similar to early Aphex Twin, but equally I could say early Aphex Twin is similar to Biosphere. And in neither case would I be slighting the other.

For some reason I seem to recall he did the soundtrack to the original version of the film Insomnia. But I may well be wrong. Perhaps I was dreaming it. And there is an hypnotic airless quality to the music. Worth a listen…

For those interested in the samples look here






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