Sunday, June 17, 2007

Vladislav Delay

If the true index of a one's artistic vitality is the adherence to one's own musical language,
Vladislav Delay seems to be developing a dragon spirit. The year 2007 marks a satisfying 10-year
anniversary for the artist;
it was in 1997 he released his first solo EP "The Kind Of Blue" on his own label. Had he continued
with the
label back then it would also be full ten years of Huume Recordings today but instead he begun his
run of
critically acclaimed releases for labels like Chain Reaction and Mille Plateaux for the next few years
to come (Huume Recordings was re-established in 2004).
Whistleblower. A working title influenced by surrounding circumstances, describing the mood and
receptions around the time of making the album. It also became the obvious choice of the title for
the album afterwards as very little had changed in that short time.
His work doesn't normally involve any politics but in the last few years it's been impossible for him
to not let some current global events sneak into the work, as an underlying influence shaping his
creative atmosphere. Contrary to inconceivable pipe-dreams he's been chasing on and the movies
and visions he's often living in, these days Vladislav Delay confesses some bewilderment at the
cruel reality of the world affairs and how much and what kind of headlines they create.
He's got very taken with the idea that what he does is just his environment shaping his
productions in turn, just as his and everyone else's productions and actions are shaping the world
as well.
His far-flung soundscapes and futuristic sound-processing are merely a way to analyse and handle
the contemporary, and in this respect it is slightly politically engaged activity; one he's aware of
but not taking advantage of for the sake of publicity. Motifs that may appear trashy or messy to
the uninitiated - sound exploration, distortions, dub technologies - can in fact be for him surprisingly
sophisticated tools for dissecting and examining the world as it is, piece by piece, layer after layer.
How he turns it out in the end is as if hundreds of radios were left playing all at once, magically
staying somewhat in synch.
The new album, consisting of 7 songs, displays somewhat a resurgence of his older drug-infused
sound-states; them utopian audio-visions large and vast enough to hide away from the reality.
it's clear from the first listen that this is no background music, nor is it anything but rather
rewarding content for those active listeners who enjoy following his multi-speed now-you-see-it-
now-you-don't-rhythm conversations and cinematographic sound visions spread across the audible
spectrum, challenging the possible and pushing the sensible boundaries of audio.
A seasoned traveler, musically speaking and otherwise, he's not afraid to devise a way to turn off
rational decision-making in his music and rather become a soul-searching intuitionist, leaving all the
radios turned on, but equally he's willing to spend weeks on end sifting through a huge pile of data
to just find one satisfying sound or musical momentum, whatever it was that was needed.
In the end, these ultimately personal musical visions serve a role to escape the persistent
transience of modern life and art, like so many commodities in our ultra-retail environment, so
hyper-linked and so videoclipped together that there is scarcely any room left for more input, all
the while the content is consumed so fast that the need for more is greater than ever

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