released January 16, 2017
When early 2016 Sindre Bjerga (Norway) and Frans de Waard (The Netherlands) decided to join forces on a tour through Germany and The Netherlands, they decided that a duo act would be in order as well; as both have a wide experience in improvised electronics it was decided not to add another duo of improvised music to the scene, but rather be a group with structured songs that needed planning and rehearsing. Eight song structures were prepared by Frans de Waard, entirely based upon drone material delivered by Sindre Bjerga, plus a bit of synthesizer and rhythm. On tour Frans mixed all of these materials live, while Bjerga added his synth noise, radio/Walkman cut-ups and microphone abuse. All of this resulting in a wild ride of rhythm ' n noise and drones. From the highly subdued to the overtly loud, one could think of early Cabaret Voltaire, Merzbow, computer glitch, cosmic synthesizers, minimal techno and massive drone and you may have something that is close to the Tech Riders sound. The eight pieces on 'In The Sky' are a selection of recordings made on the road in 2016 and have very little to do (anymore) with the CDR that was sold as tour merchandise, also called 'In The Sky'. Confusing? Yes, it sure is, that's Tech Riders for you. Their April 2017 tour will take them to Finland and the Baltic States.
Eine konzertierte Aktion von AC, Gold Soundz & Korm Plastics besorgte In the Sky (ACU 1007 / GS#129 / kp 3064), eine niederländisch-norwegische Beschallung durch Frans de Ward & Sindre Bjerga als TECH RIDERS. Die beiden waren nach erstem Kontakt Ende 2015 im März 2016 um die Häuser gezogen und hatten dabei auch das Atelierhaus 23 in Hamburg, die Baustelle Kalk in Köln beschallt. Genauer: Beprasselt, behubschraubert, umzuckt und besirrt, auch umloopt mit launigem Gepfeife und mit Synthie bedröhnt und bewölkt, bebrodelt und mit Scratches gestreichelt. Loops knarren altersschwach, es furcht, flimmert, mahlt und furzelt. Es überrascht ein ulkiger Drum Machine-Groove mit Stimmfitzeln drumherum, gewollt und gekonnt komisch. Dann wird es dröhnend halbseriös, mit kritzeligen Akzenten und auch wieder groovy. So auch bei 'And So, Just Like That' mit seinen Alltagsloops, seiner 4/4-Simpelei. Bis zum rauschenden, tuckernden, kritzeligen, stimmfitzeligen Ausklang mit diesen kuriosen Hoppereitern.
elektronik und fieldrecordings / ambient, geräuschhaft, (proto-) techno. alles zugleich aber nie aneinander vorbei. und das alles auch noch live: „in the sky“ vereint (in der wiederveröffentlichung nun auf cd mit neuem cover) acht ausschnitte aus vier konzerten der tech riders aka frans de waard + sindre bjerga, aufgenommen in amsterdam, eindhoven, hamburg und köln. das ganze offenbart eine menge spaß, den die beiden (vermutet) auf der bühne hatten, z.b. wenn abseitige polizeifunkartige gesprächsfetzen über lockeren elektronischen beat hängen und kann mit seiner ebenso lockeren hörästhetik auch den hörern vergleichbar viel spaß machen. „in the sky“ ist in seiner atmosphäre völlig frei von irgendwelchen vordergründigen haltungen und ebenso völlig frei von betont bedeutungsschwangeren ausdrucksformen, was „bleibt“ ist eine art befreiter sound an sich, der dich mitnimmt ohne dass du weist wieso. ein umstand, der hier aber ausnahmsweise unerheblich ist; vollkommen unerheblich sogar. viel spaß.
YEAH I KNOW IT SUCKS
This album begins like a alien activity that pretends to be a storm; you can hear the sky crackle, but also your own ears twitching to understand the unusual sound that had flown in. Suddenly the hairs within the receiver’s ears will just flap to make a rhythm, a minimal bit of funky rest occurs and the potential bad weather activities disappear quicker than they had popped up.
Apparently it’s than time to turn up the heath which seem to involve a upcoming brew of warmth mixed with underlying snippets of unidentified things. Its crispy sound sits like a slow beating heart in its pot; it’s alive and yet shimmers as if it won’t boil anytime soon. If this music was a soup it would be one to spoon up immediately!
The sky had broken open to let us have a clearer look at what had been going on so earlier on. It reveals that there are unexplainable things to see & hear. I would explain them if I could, or describe them.. but I’m just as flabbergasted as the average Jill and Joe. But what I can tell you that (either natural activities or not..) they all come across very friendly. If it is aliens; you won’t have to worry if you want to go out and have a coffee with them.
Time to check out the Damage Control, a nice mission as all the damage inflicted seem to be of the good kind. Some nice mice might have bitten through some electric cables, some aliens might have been dancing on the motherboard a bit to long; but in the end these things are easily overlooked or brushed aside; this is more a charming damage than a fatal one. Just twist some happy knobs, launch a missile of victory and say to the big boss that it’s all done.
Before we know it we have arrived at the Uneven Edges, one that seem like the environment a flat earth conspiracy theorist would feel at home in. The edges might be uneven, the surface itself seems to be clear, clean and making balancing moves that feels pretty to slip and slide over. Mind the edges though; nobody wants to fall off from this one.
To add some sugar to our experience we have to go on for the sugar pot. We can scrap out the bottom, add some liquids in there to make it dissolved so it goes into our bitter ears more easily; but either way it’s a moment of sweet tooth candidness. And so, just like that this album moves along, providing a bunch of voices that come from possible abducted (by aliens) humans, all sampled to form some kind of instrumentation in a scientific techno experiment.
Look at the time! Eight by two! Where did it go and how quick it moves along & funny enough it means also the end of this audio experience. We can hear wet kisses of hiss and noises upon our inner ear drums, some rescuers on a mission chatting away through the holes in our head & all I can say that this might all be vague and weird; I think it is pretty damn good!
THOUGHTS WORDS ACTION
Tech Riders is an interesting experimental project comprised of Sindre Bjerga (Norway) and Frans De Vaard (Netherlands) who determined to join forces during their tour throughout Germany and Netherlands. It seemed like an excellent idea and truthfully, Tech Riders articulate like a charm essentially because of the creativity, experience, abilities, and effort both aforementioned artists have put into these recordings. In The Sky consists of their recordings from the specific tour, so Tech Noir has been recorded at De Ruimte, Amsterdam; Turn Up The Heat, Damage Control, And So Just Like That have been recorded at TAC, Eindhoven; Sky Is Open and Uneven Edges have been recorded at Atelierhaus 23, Hamburg; Sugar Time and Eight By Two have been recorded at Baustelle Kalk, Köln. As you can see, all these compositions were part of their collaborations before or after their separate sets, but their collaborations sounded like they’ve spent year recording collectively in the professional studio. These compositions are also assorted for the advantage of compactness of the entire material, therefore oscillations between recordings are almost unnotable. Musicwise, Tech Riders are going far and beyond conventional avant-garde circles, it would be shameless to define, categorize or simplify their sound with one particular avant-garde genre. The most straightforward interpretation of their musical progression would be thoughtfully manipulated electronica, accompanied by generous portions of various synth manipulations, musique concrete, minimal, ambient, drone and classical academy of noise. The sound is so compact, all elements are thoughtfully combined into one unifying piece perpetuated with a wide specter of various melodies, keys, noises, ambient and drone sequences, manipulations, but besides all these implementations their sound still remains within minimal electronics. Both Sindre Bjerga and Frans De Vaard thought about every single aspect of their live collaborations, and it’s more than obvious that In The Sky is a result of the conscious effort between these prominent artists. In The Sky has been published on a compact disc by Attenuation Circuit, a brilliant record label from Augsburg, Germany, mainly specialized in the publishing avant-garde artists whose expertise goes under ambient, drone, noise, musique concrete or any other specific experimental categories.