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Erster Nachtschatten
Schlagschatten

ASMUS TIETCHENS Dämmerattacke

CD album | gg251
Asmus Tietchens is a sound artist and composer from Hamburg, Germany. He got interested in Musique Concrete by listening to a German radio programme when he was 10 years old. In 1965, at the age of 18, Asmus started experimenting with tape loops and turned them into musical collages. Soon, the use of synthesizers was added. In 1980 his debut album Nachtstücke was released, produced by Peter Baumann of Tangerine Dream. This was soon followed by a series of albums of electronic pop music for the Sky label, home of many Krautrock bands. Tietchens often uses special source materials for his compositions such as water (Seuchengebiete), human voices (Von Mund zu Mund), paper (Papier ist geduldig). He is associated with the Industrial music scene through his collaborations and releases on labels such as United Dairies, Esplendor Geometrico or Dom Records. Tietchens never studied composition, he has no academic background, everything he does is self taught or learnign by doing. Nevertheless, he was professor for sound design in Hamburg in recent years. The album Dämmerattacke was originally released on Dutch Korm Plastics label in 1997 as a limited edition vinyl LP only. It was later reissued as a double CD with Eisgang. For this latest edition, we have added another bonus track making the CD 20 minutes longer than the LP. Full track list: 1. Zweite Dämmerattacke 2. Erster Nachtschatten 3. Zweiter Nachtschatten 4. Dritter Nachtschatten 5, Schlagschatten 6. Franz-Joseph-Land. Price: € 17,-/copy incl. worldwide shipping.

Proving the timelessness of ambient, Dämmerattacke sounds as fresh today as it must have when it was released over twenty years ago. Opening with a bright and airy openness, Zweite Dämmerattacke carries the main mass of Dämmerattacke on its back. Comprising more than half of the original album, this 23 minute monstrosity feels like timelapse footage of the skyline at the shore. Sunny and airy, with liquid undertones, sometimes fog rolls in and thickens the mix with its vaporous blanket. Boats hit the docks at times adding surprising thuds, before the fog lightens and the song ends. Subtly oscillating, bell like drones shuttle forth before maneuvering and dancing near-fluted highs steal the show in Erster Nachtschatten. Like watching a water spirit in a deep underground cave, Erster brings up complex feelings with its juxtaposed dark and light sounds. The chthonic undertones fully take hold on Zweiter Nachtschatten, and the listener is brought into a deeper subterranean realm.
(Musique Machine, February 2018)

The music is slow and quiet, but not as quiet as Tietchens would largely produce after 2000, inspired by the microsound movement. The synthesizer element that was a strong feature in the mid 90s runs through all of these works as well as a more or less nautical theme, rusty ships in cold, salty water, such as in Zweite Dammerattacke. It reminded me of the very first Werkbund LP, Skagerrak (and no, lets not go into the whole discussion if Asmus equals Werkbund), with that very same submarine below sea surface sound. (...) If the post 2000 Tietchens music is too quiet for your taste, but you like his more ambient approach then these two are certainly something you should check out.
(Vital Weekly, April 2018)