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act 90 · klangstabil · sprite storage format · lp

special cardboard sleeve w/ inlay. limited 511 copies, deleted

bitplanes out of phase, row stripping, tile crowding, symmetrical reduction, japanese roms, |row|--hi---

sprite storage format was recorded directly onto dat in realtime by using only a nintendo gameboy with an additional gameboy camera cartridge and some additional effects. there are no additional tracks / sources mixed to this recording - just the gameboy sounds & sequencing recorded directly onto dat! it's a piercing, drilling electro burst of sharpened and shaped electronic waves directly from the heart of the gameboy.

the german duo "klangstabil" was founded in 1994 by maurizio blanco and boris may. amongst their releases are the brilliant "böhm - gott der elektrik" lp from early 1997, released on their own "megahertz" label. on this lp they used a self-converted "böhmat", a rhythm-and effects-"instrument" which had its high time during the 50's and 60's and that was originally intended to support organ-players with additional rhythms. "klangstabil" showed that the "böhmat" is much more than just a simple instrument for support, but that it deserves to play a main part with its astonishing fresh sound instead of being kind of a musical slave. another great "klangstabil" release is their 7" "fünf minuten klangstabil" from december 1998, again released on their own "megahertz" label. a very conceptual release this time, it shows both artists consequently following their own path.


der gameboy hat schon manchen lehrer oder bahnreisenden mit seinen begleitgeräuschen zur verzweiflung gebracht. verzweiflung verwandelt klangstabil in begeisterung respektive unverständnis je nach musikalischer oder auch klanglicher vorstellung, denn vorliegende lp wurde unter zuhilfenahme einiger effektgeräte ausschlie§lich mit der lieblingsspielekonsole der 90er eingespielt, sogar das coverdesign entspringt der gameboy-cam. sehr industriell anmutender und unmöglich einzuordnender sound, dessen rhythmik der innewohnenden monotonie entspringt, während auf beat im konventionellen sinne fast gänzlich verzichtet wird. klingen so die computerspiele 2030? (motik)
klangstabil mag ich prinzipiell erstmal gerne, denn mit ihrer 'gott der elektrik'-lp rockten sie vor nunmehr drei jahren mein zimmer und tun es immernoch. damals waren es die rhythmusautomaten von heimorgeln, heute sind es gameboys, mit denen klangstabil ihre tracks bauen. hat ja unter anderem auch schon alec empire gemacht und mich damit ziemlich gelangweilt, weil die tracks einfach wie eine alte atari-konsole klangen, was vielleicht oder doch eher wahrscheinlich so sein sollte. auch klangstabil klingen nach computerspiel, aber mehr nach solchen, die noch nicht erfunden sind. düster und manisch, schwer repetetiv, angezerrt und trippelnd. so, als ob dir donky kong erzählt, was er nachts so träumt. ob ich das wissen will, weiss ich nicht wirklich, aber jetzt ist es schon passiert.

mute! magazine v1.n2
ant-zen mario vs luigi in an all out, nintendo approved, power noise war. rhythmic industrial at it's finest and recorded on our childhood friend... the gameboy. the guys behind klangstabil give it to us this time with "symmetrical reduction" and "bitplates out of phase", both hefty, danceable, and tear jerking as you remember that dismal way when you traded in your gameboy for your mother's kidney operation.

re:mote induction
are you ready for the next wave of gaming? klangstabil studios in association with ant-zen audio visual arts present sprite storage format - six levels of game boy fun! well actually it's a 6 track 12" constructed from sounds generated by a game boy - in a sleeve that imitates a game boy. here klangstabil are row stripping japanese bitplanes out of rom phase from the crowded tiles of symmetrical reduction and placing them on row 0 of your sprite storage format ready for you to access across the two segments: select blue and start grey. select blue starts with bitplanes out of phase, a stream of bleeps that converge on a rhythm form. an electronic melody is then added to that - a bleepy pattern that is smoothly engaging. rhythm layers become agitated in their glitchiness, contrasting the melody in klangstabil fashion. towards three minutes the melody escalates into its most impressive stage - clean and catchy. though in continual search of contrast klangstabil allow different discord. we continue with rowstripping - strings of sounds which start off percussive, in a blocky 2d fashion, and mutate to increasingly electronic form. though with the full bleep achieved layers are added to the central loop - blunt percussion and snappish distortions providing the rhythmic layers. rowstripping enters into more chaotic territory than bitplanes - the heavy layering adding to this feeling. alarm cycles loop over a babble of electron signal and the jittering static beat stutter. select blue concludes with the forefront static bluntness of tile crowding, a pixel glitch across this units screen. the bleeps creep in as motion simulation, the pistoning legs of the space ship across the screen and then it's down a row, it's closer and the sound emphasises the greater threat. coherent stretches are ominous amongst the randomness of game play. sprite storage format moves from select blue into mode 2 - start grey. the first selection here being symmetrical reduction, which maintains a similar feel to tile crowding, but in a manner which is more focussed. the sounds layer in a denser fashion, perhaps suggesting that a more intense level has been attained. your hand to eye is manic as you try to keep up with the burgeoning motions of symmetrical reductions. start grey is reduced to japanese roms, a distinctly glitchy electro melody. again this tune is considerably catchy, though the sound is of course disjointed. the sound loops in a relentless form, mutating just as we consider monotony. more of a bonus maze level than threatening invasion, and quite possibly my favourite track here. after the extended joy of japanese roms we reach the final level of game play - |row 0|---hi---. which has something of roms in it, but in a fashion that is distorted. that suggestion is lost in the burble of bass and bleep analogue patterns - a fairly rapid structuring. suggestive of pursuit with tight rays of focus shot through that at intervals. past three minutes this all seems to become thicker sounding, gravity takes an effect for that moment and drags us down. though that force resisted we're up and running again, boosted by some sort of enhanced enthusiasm. but with that burst it's all over - disconnect - game over

listening to this record, at first you could be appalled with monotonous sound manipulations, when klangstabil seems to find a cool loop and exploit it throughout the whole song. however it does grow on you gradually, as the music moves forward and in addition to frequencies and distortion you get some nice atonal high-pitched analog bleeps and noises. chaotic, repetitive, it has some weird spell that haunts you when you listen to it. as long as you acknowledge the fact that it is not trying to be diverse or present an easy entertainment, you should enjoy its bizarre atmosphere. it turns out that listening to this record loud does change the perception quite a lot. the combination of thick noisy textures and cut-up soft, videogame-like torn synths and keys is quite fascinating before it gets too repetitive to be fully enjoyed. the atmosphere on each track might be described as surreal - pure sound manipulations are not suited for creating a stable and emotional music atmosphere - it is rather an elaborate exercise in constructing collages of clashing, pulsing, spinning, collapsing noises, loops and funky repetitive sounds. after you learn that this record has been done in realtime using gameboy, it acquires yet another quality as a peculiar manifest of modern electronic primitivism

l'ultime atome
difficile de les appréhender clair et net, les deux savants métallos de klangstabil (maurizio blanco et boris may). en quelques disques , ils nous ont déjà servis les nappes industrielles les plus déchirantes de l'univers, sinon du nord de l'europe. ainsi que des variations aux rythmiques en creux (toujours sur matériel de récupération, dirait-on). mais encore un morceau d'électro mélo presque pop (enchanteur) sur la fameuse compilation "technoir" du label hymen au printemps 1999... les revoici avec un disque entièrement dédié aux jeux vidéo (o¯ ils sont aussi allés puiser leur matière sonore). au passage, on respire un peu, en les découvrant capables d'humour... car leurs trombines à faire peur ne nous avaient jamais rassurés jusqu'ici. mais au-delà de ce rigolo concept, qu'est-ce qu'il vaut, ce disque ? il sert une électro rêche, on ne peut plus. jouant jusqu'à l'extrême sur l'aspect cheap de ce matériel sonore - notamment sur quelques morceaux extrêmement répétitifs, dont seuls certains deejays super astucieux pourront tirer quelque chose d'intéressant -. lorsqu'ils s'orientent vers l'électrocore, donc, ils n'aboutissent pas réellement. l'aspect ludique, blippant, donne de meilleurs résultats : des passages électro drôles, finauds, et pas si kitsch. astuce et perversité. de quoi faire regretter que les deux mb ne nous fassent pas plus souvent de cette sorte de blague ; car nos zygomatiques en redemandent autant que nos orteils.

spectrum issue 4
with the concept of this release revolving around tracks creeated from a gameboy as the main sound source, you are assured an unusual listen. an obvious hint of cheesy computer game sounds is unavoidable, but these elements are actually cut and looped into patterns and sequences that create credible sounding tracks. mostly chugging computer glitches and segments are looped into discerrible format which seem to hold for most of the tracks' lengths. 'raw stripping' is less recognizable as being generated from computer game music, a sinister electronic track of malfunctioning software origin. complexities of rhythms and beats gradually structure themselves around the track's core making for quite a noisy, static-riddled piece. what could only be a mario boys type tune is looped on 'symmetrical reduction' that creates quite a quirky groove within the repetitive choppy static beats. more obvious gameboy looped tunes are found on 'japanese roms', here relying less on beat structures other than straight programmed noises. the gameboy inspiration goes even a step further in regards to packaging, with group photos taken and printed via a gameboy camera and printer and with the shape and clear insert of the slip sleeve cover likewise looking like an actual gameboy. i will admit that i initially bought this due to the gimmick factor (and wanting to hear what such a project would sound like), yet overall this is a surprisingly compelling listen. (richard stevenson)

unstick the brain 06/2002
recently ,the forefront label in the the (no need to call it!) industrial scene ,ant-zen released the last work of the german-italian project klangstabil. here mr maurizio blanco -who is the owner of the very respected label mhz releasing technoise related projects only in limited vinyl versions- and mr boris may offers us a 12" ,that includes 6 compositions with samples taken from the nintendo gameboy.the sounds and sequencing comes straight from this little machine and for the whole out-come was used a ms20 ,a vocoder plus varius effects. klangstabil ,as some of you might already know ,like to use elements from the very start of electronic music and also from basic and simple machines treating them in a way that listening to them appears very fresh and modern. the sound of the record is noisy enough with characteristic depth and massive frequencies. the compositions follow the classical klangstabil style of complicated minimalist ideally and with great care crafted. "symmetrical reduction" stands for it's danceable breakish rhythm, "tile crowding" for it's raw power and "bitplanes out of phase" as a very beautiful and well treated experimentation that is also dance able. as a conclusion we could say that with their first work in ant-zen ,klangstabil honors the label ,althought this is not the first time that mr stefan alt ant the duo have cooperated (remember the vinyl in hymen,which is sidelabel of ant-zen and that the site of hymen was built by maurizio blanco) offering us a great work that contributes a lot to the rhythm noise section of ant-zen's "actions".

klangstabil homepage
megahertz homepage

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