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"we are unidentifiable (...) we are your shadow (...) we are attempted to map frequencies (...) to recode acoustic fields (...)
we click, scratch and roar (...) our music pulls things into themselves"
AUTOPOIESES linear notes from the album "la vie à noir"

"black does not reflect, it is clandestine. in the physical sense black is not visible, it is that which is not perceived, that which is not been; obscuritas, black is not substantial, but attracts substance. black is connected to another form of energy, it is dangerous, obscene, lost, doomed and not least attractive.since the start of modernity, even perhaps since the period of german romanticism, black or metaphyisically noir, has been the source of the heterogeneous. the end of logic, the leftovers. the blind spot; such the theories were developed to explain rationally that which represents the abyss in man.

there were many attempts at such explanations. today, in the production of theory, noir is to be found in the nothingness which is defined as such by it. here we find a fear of trading on ground on which theory and practice lose their seemingly infinite dominance. noir is a possibility of deterritorialised life. in our sense noir explores greater areas than that plotted in literature by lautreamont, george, goodis and raymond. classical music relied until recently upon the abandoned dichotomy between sound and world which prescribed its dicourse and theories. we think of bataille in noir we are concerned with the actual.

being hidden (we are unidentifiable) thought (we can know, but not viceversa) truth (we are your shadow, a second substance) we are attempted to map frequencies. to recode acoustic fields. to remove discursive interfaces, we have discovered the city, the ocean, pendercki and billie holyday, we did not have to look for moondog and new orleans, albert ayler and ernst busch, as they were closer to us than we are to ourselves.

the individual components are edited like films (because of our choice of software) and have been transposed out of themselves in their milieu, we grouped our samples together embedded in haphazard broken frequencies, raw files, in order to rediscover the locations of noir, to draw it into the binary-coded world. we click, scratch and roar our music pulls things into themselves, we want to flow and to taste. whether micro-internal clusters, brotzmanns saxophone or stochastic music - they all become blank through the filtering. as if they wanted to return there. the connection to (lost) afroamerican music and literature which in the sense of noir seemed close to us formed a part of this production. both 'hard boiled' and jazz have been according to our understanding of their discursive fields of meaning, decapitated, ultimately we are reappraising their decline here, the prison songs, funeral marches and king oliver have not been incorporated into a new cultural aggregate which is aware of its own blood stains, this music of otherness has been perpetuated in the cogs and wheels of economic reality. this century has given us techniques of recording and storing with which we reconstructed the music of the street, of the rabble, of the old comic theatre as multifunctional and multimedia discourses, the musical universe will lose nothing else.

new and newer technologies of digital production are producing a huge archive, a part of which is autopoieses, but which we nevertheless wish to criticise form its parameter, digital production is a part of the world, not the other way around we are concerned with what is not mentioned, with things and conditions which are lost or made invisible in the further devolopment of synthetic music. roaring and clicking belong to the same real order as classical orchestral music. in fact the musical of the second viennese school has not yet abandoned. we do not these either-how could we? for that we would need a new form of hearing, hearing which does not comprehend any more, hearing devoid of sense and purpose. as desidered by john cage. hearing is far too much a business to rid itself of its present founding principles but we are concerned with the limits to what we can hear today.

our experiment here lay in the task of combining classical music and the aporia of popular production and its history our aim consisted in the hope that we could present a reorganisation of digital space related to the ritornello, but beyond motif and counterpoint dissonance and dissidence from this one can see our intention to repoliticise digital music.

noir stands, not least, for a feeling we can see it in john cassavetes. we have it sometimes at night or after too much to drink it is always with us. it is in the air media discourses deny the exstance of the abyss. just as does the greater part of contemporary crime-novels in the cinema, one is irritated by tarantino. hong kong is history only hip-hop seems still to want to draw on noir. here one could examine the geto boys or wordsound as interfaces our production is dedicated to this feeling. we hope this can be sensed."

ALL MUSIC
on Autopoieses

"This adventurous German duo debuted on Force Inc's ultra-experimental Ritornell label with La Vie á Noir, a live album recorded on October 15, 1999, at Städel in their hometown of Frankfurt. Their music was conceptualized as a digitally processed reinterpretation of noir and was used by William Forsythe for his ballet Endless House. Following the release of the live album, the duo released a double-12" EP on Mille Plateux titled La Vie á Noir Remixes, which found them looping snippets from their album into minute-long segments. In 2000, one half of the duo, Ekkehard Ehlers, began recording solo as Auch, in addition to releasing music under his real name. In early 2001, the other member of the duo, Sebastian Meissner, released a solo album as RANDOM_INC on Ritornell, the highly conceptual Jerusalem, and has also released music as Random Industries."

ALL MUSIC
Autopoieses "live à noir"
CD (Ritornell, Germany, 2000)

"The mysterious Autopoieses project debuted with La Vie Á Noir, a similarly enigmatic work that processes and deconstructs jazzy film noir samples via blasts of abstract experimental programming. It's like an audio history of jazz -- from swing all the way to free -- performed by a schizophrenic, frequently misfiring, CD player. Though the programming is inventive throughout, the experimentation never really serves any purpose than its own. Almost as innovative as it is adventurous."

ALL MUSIC
Autopoieses "transposed"
DoLP (Mille Plateaux, Germany, 2000)

"This remix project loops various moments from Autopoleses' full-length La Vie à Noir for a minute at a time. While this doesn't exactly sound too listening friendly (which it isn't, by the way), it is rather hypnotic and trippy, taking the experimentation of the full-length to more ambient territory. Furthermore, the inclusion of remixes by Vladislav Delay, Kit Clayton, Terre Thaemlitz, and Gez Varley is definitely welcome and helps to bring some additional variety and listenability to this double-LP."

DE:BUG
Autopoieses "la vie à noir"
CD (Mille Plateaux, Germany, 1999)

"Eine Cd mit 44 einminütigen Stücken, Skizzen, Fragmenten und Theorien. Die ersten wollen und tun dies auch mehr als überzeugend mit Jazz, und das was in ihm an französischer Ideologie eines –Vie á Noir” mitschwingt, durch zwischengelagerte Schichten digitaler Bearbeitung ohne die Grundsubstanz zu zerstören, auflösen und wieder als Feld einer Bearbeitung zuführen, die, so advanced sie klingt, nicht unbedingt den Effekt des Spielerischen verlieren muss. Das erinnert gelegentlich an Curd Duca, will aber nicht thematisch in die Richtung, sondern versucht eher modulare Einheiten freizustellen, die den Blick auf Strukturierungen nicht einer wie auch immer sichergestellten Wissenschaftlichkeit überlassen will. Die zweite der vier Serien bezieht sich eher auf industriell moderne Klassik, die dritte auf mehr percussiv den Sklavenbewegungen der Jahrhunderte folgend dezentralen Ideen und deren Beweglichkeit und die letzte ist wieder dort wo man begann, aber in einem Brückenschlag zwischen Satie und Easy Listening alles schon einmal aufbereitet hat. Eine extreme aber auch extrem hörbare CD voller digitaleuphorischer Skizzen, die zu den besten Platten auf Mille Plateaux gehören dürfte, die sich den Bezügen von Hochkultur und elektronischem Widerstand widmet."

[Bleed]
SPEX
Autopoieses "la vie à noir"
CD (Mille Plateaux, Germany, 1999)

"Dieses Duo aus Frankfurt hat das kaum noch für möglich Gehaltene geschafft und nochmal den Bezugsrahmen erweitert : analoge und digitale Oberflächengeräusche, statische Aufladungen einerseits und Albert Ayler andererseits. Hatte sich die Musik Aylers, trotz Stan Douglas´ Arbeit auf der vorletzten documenta, bislang nocherfolgreich gegen jede nichtexpressive Bezugnahme gesperrt, so hätten sich elektronische Aleatorik-Effekte bis zuletzt gegen die Umarmung durch mächtige akustische Bässe gesperrt, die von der Verwirklichung von Menschen- und Bürgerrechten sprachen. In ihrem Interesse an den sich stetig erweiternden digitalen Archiven geht es Autopoieses nicht an den historischen und semantischen Status-Unterscheiden von Klängen vorbei. Sie feiern nicht die nun endlose Vereinbarkeit von vorher Unvereinbaren, wie so viele vor ihnen, sondern zeigen die besondere Restbestände von Unvereinbarkeit auf. Trotz der etwas bemühten konzeptuellen Verklammerung ihres Projektes über die verschiedenen Eigenschaften der Farbe/Nichtfarbe Schwarz, gelingt es ihnen tatsächlich, den Unterschied zwischen neu gestifteter Vereinbarkeit, längst historisch und technologisch verschliffenen Unterschieden und ultimativen semantischen Sperrigkeiten nicht nur zu zeigen, sondern musikalisch einleuchten umzusetzen. Die vierundvierzig einminütigen, jeweils aus ein bis drei Elementen bestehenden Pieces sind zu zehn größeren Einheiten zusammengefügt, die über sowohl naheliegende wie überraschende Familienähnlichkeiten zueinander finden (Regen, Walking Bass, Free Jazz etc.), so dass man sich jeweils fragen muss, welchen eigenen Ideen über Zusammengehörigkeit man trauen kann und welchen nicht. Das eigene Hören, seine affektiven wie seine analytischen Teile, wird einem ständig vorgeführt. Erkennen, Erinnern und ganz direktes Eintauchen werden ermuntert und dann wieder unterbunden. Dabei nimmt sowohl der Anteil der Teile zu, die ein rein kulinarisch-musikalisches Recht einfordern, wie auch gleichzeitig der der unüberhörbaren Durchkreuzung solchen Hörens. Es kommt zu dramatischen Steigerungen im konzeptuellen Aufbau, der von den Einzelheiten angefeuert und gespiegelt wird. Du denkst "Dramatik" über eine konzeptuelle Spannung und kriegst gleich ein Piano, das in einem gar nicht abgefeimten, aber klischeehaften Sinne dramatisch klingt, dann folgt ein anderes Piano, das nun aber durch irgendeinen elektronischen Kakao gezogen wird. Natürlich ist die Semantik dieser Ereignisse wesentlich diffuser. Aber etwa so geht – in unkonturierter – das Hören dieses Albums. Wer ist da nicht neugierig geworden."

[Diedrich Diederichsen]