-m a k- 1
30. jan. 2001-live(vienna)
mastered in vienna 2001
instrument: a-100(deopfer),gardemusik wien,goldberg quartett
string quartett composed by schindloffsky
design: christian bretter, 'IWO INT.
(c)&(p) 2001 thilges 3
isrc at-h66-99-th306
  bbc music online/uk reviewer: olli siebelt

There are plenty of discussions around the water cooler here at BBC Music HQ about the state of technology and its impact on the musical world. When not reminiscing about the first time we heard a TB-303, one comment that is almost always heard whenever a new batch of records comes in the post is "Hey - with all this incredible technology at our disposal, why the hell aren't there more talented producers doing really groundbreaking work? They all sound like each other!"
Well, leave it to the Austrians to break the mould and to inspire us with hope. Already home to quality labels such as Sabotage, Klein, and Mego, Vienna is quickly becoming one of the most musically cutting edge cities in Europe, if not the world. Hailing from that fair city are Thilges 3 and this is the sixth CD (a 3" CD, I might add) in a ten part series available by subscription. Formed in 1996 after a "spontaneous live performance", Armin Steiner, Gammon and Nik Hummer have dedicated themselves to electro-acoustic audio installations using analogue synths and a quadraphonic sound system. The idea is to create a physical sound space in which the listener can move around freely, experiencing the audiobb in a variety of ways depending on their location within the space. Each of these performances is then recorded as a document of one particular experience within the installation. "Mak" is sourced from an installation that took place in Vienna earlier this year. The piece was designed for two rooms;
in one was the Austrian Military Orchestra and The Goldberg Quartet performing composer Ali Schindloffsky's "Logos". As the musicians played, < Thilges 3 reworked and remixed them, sending the resulting mix through their quadrophonic PA to the second room. It was this second altered mix that was captured and then encoded on the 3" CD. The first of the three tracks kicks off with a staccato attack of glitched techno beats and abstract ambience. It's similar to the output of labels like Basic Channel or Chain Reaction, except here it's presented with a very defined stereo field. Imagine Oval remixing The Mighty Mighty Bosstones' horn section and you're on the money. The second captures the string quartet, adding slight delay and flange effects. Here the enhancement brings out wonderful overtones, creating a much more dense yet ethereal performance. The third and most powerful of the three kicks off with a triplicate dub beat that morphs and slides over a pan delay of the military band, < which drops in and out at random moments.
From a purely auditory standpoint, this is quite an impressive release and it's quite interesting to note that one of the most forward thinking pieces of music I've heard this year has at its heart not a computerised waveform but an old fashioned analogue (if not centuries old) source. Well worth hunting down, as is the rest of the series.