1. The River That Divides My Factory 3:26
2. My Child Goes To the Surf (1st) 6:05
3. My Child Goes To the Surf (2nd) 22:50
4. Black Egg Tangram (Beginning) 4:13
5. Black Egg Tangram (Ending) 0:56
6. Old Clouds 6:26
Mirko Uhlig (*1981 in Aachen, Germany) is a German musician and producer in the contemporary field of drone and minimal ambient music, and co-founder of Ex Ovo Records.
He first appeared with surreal sound collages and musique concrète-techniques under the moniker Aalfang Mit Pferdekopf (catching eels with a horse's head) around 2004.
After releasing four albums and some EPs (on Aal, Einzeleinheit, Taâlem, Mystery Sea and Drone Records) Uhlig decided to release his now much more minimalistic and serene works under a less delusive name.
Uhlig's music is inspired by pioneers of drone and minimalistic music such as La Monte Young, early Tangerine Dream, Brian Eno, David Lynch, William Basinski and current Hafler Trio; echoing the blurred distance of a late Turner painting.
Mirko Uhlig currently lives in Bonn, Germany. Here is a description of "Supper" according to his own words:
Horizon's old clouds! This is what I call a conceptual reference album. Not that it puts up any standards in some sort or being a reference for whatever or whoever, no - it simply deals with references of my listening past/present.
"Supper" can be seen (and maybe heard) as a tribute to a wonderful album that inspired me when I was ten/eleven and still does - especially the last track. When you have a closer look at the booklet, I think the traces are obvious enough - you'll know what record I'm talking about. So it fits perfectly that Andrea releases my music on Afe Records. Without his fellow countrymen the young Mirko wouldn't have had a glimpse of a chance of doing the lover's leap at all. So a very big "Thank You!" to him and his enthusiasm.
1,2,3 and a step into the bright light of a schizophrenic night. Although this was meant to be a record-tribute, the climax/dynamics on "Supper" are a little bit different and even strange to me. But somehow it's circulating in a fine way. Closing the regular album with "Old Clouds" makes sense to me, because the used field recordings and guitar dilettantisms date back eight years ago when I started recording my very diffuse musical ideas and song catastrophies on cheap cassettes with a much cheaper equipment. The hidden track is so shy that it even hides a number and a title. Some small sheep-folk-ambient for putting down the lights and licking dew from the meadows.
P.S.: Thanks to Marcus Obst for sharing organ improvisations. Some of that original music found its way on the forthcoming Ex Ovo issue "Cosmic Tapes". A tiny miniature of these recordings is the backbone of "My Child Goes To The Surf". And yes, you're right: The vinyl crackling really was sampled from the ending grooves of my vinyl copy of CAS 1058. As sure as black eggs is black eggs. Everything's fine and weathered through when it ends with a baa!
"Perhaps the most rewarding part about growing up is discovering life's irrational angles as an aspect of beauty: "When you reach the point of throwing all socialising bullshit sticking like leeches at music's pretty face overboard, you're merely following the entirely logical way of listening to whatever you like", Mirko Uhlig says about the seemingly incongruent influences of his latest full-length "Supper", "Listening to Abba and Cannibal Corpse in the same hour. Why not. At a certain point in your life it's okay and important to have a narrow-minded taste in music, because it offers you a sense of identity and allegiance. But emancipation has to come eventually." Almost apologetically (but not really), he adds: "Ok, "Supper" is my musical emancipation."
"...Uhlig's works are informed by some of the pioneers of drone music, citing such diverse and deviant sources as David Lynch, La Monte Young, and The Hafler Trio as major influencers. "Supper" is no clear cut drone work, however, as Uhlig adds texture to the drone with layered miniaturised soundscapes weaving in and out of the central drones, or overlays of pure sine-tone, adding further substance to a highly resonant textural field. Uhlig doesn't actively re-invent the wheel here, though his work is infused with streaks and smears of originality, taking drone into hitherto unexplored territories, with minute diversions into microsonics and glitch. Uhlig's work is up close and personal, as never does he resort to the overblown, amped-up reverb excursions exhibited by so many of today's drone practitioners. A great collection."
"Cover: im besten fall warnen die ja schon mal vor, was da drin ist. Manchmal wirklich aus sich heraus, manchmal nur, weil mann / frau die band kennt und einordnen kann, was das jetzt soll. Dieses hier, grafisch schon was obskur, schickt meine assoziationen mittels der typo erst mal über den atlantik zu keith fullerton whitman, dessen "schöner flussengel" das letzte cover ist, an das ich mich in sachen gothik-look durch gebrochene schrift erinnern kann (und sich im fall keith fullerton whitman, auch noch schick bestückt mit einer irgendwie verwackelten gotischen kirche und, natürlich, durch die kombi: us-musiker / titel / schrifttype reichlich far out gegeben hat und noch gibt). Nächster bezugspunkt, wenn der player noch fern: die namen der titel. und spätestens hier hilft es ungemein, wenn mann / frau weis, dass Mirko Uhlig "zwar" in der (sich gern immer etwas ernsthaft gebenden) experimental-drone-geräuschmusik unterwegs ist, auf humor und augenzwinkern deswegen nicht verzichten will / muss: was, ohne dieses wissen, würden titel wie "My Child Goes To the Surf" oder "Black Egg Tangram" sonst erwarten lassen? Eben..."
"...The CD counts seven tracks whereas the cover only mentions six. The seventh untitled piece is something different. An acoustic guitar as main instrument and it seems to be hardly manipulated as soundsource... The six other tracks are more drone-like pieces and there are actually two longer pieces which are both divided in two parts. The absolute highlight of this album is "My Child Goes To the Surf". The title triggers the emotional perspective from which this track could have been written. In the first part you feel the waves being a new territory and the constant struggle to stay on the board. Whereas in the second part the child got the hang of it and catches wave after wave, not falling down anymore. Yes, "Supper" is a good addition to Mirko's discography and proves that he is someone to keep track of these coming years."
"...Uhlig has become one of the more interesting sound artists from Germany. His first main work, the self-released "VIVMM" CD-R (this year to be re-issued on LP I believe) was an exercise in drone based music, but he also dabbled with noise, and with this new album he expands his horizon a bit further. The main backbone is ambience and drones, but there is also bits of guitar music popping up from the world of folk... Uhlig creates highly atmospheric music, but avoids the pitfalls of regular drone music. He knows how to add surprise elements, interesting changes and sudden moves, and lifts his music out of ordinary and do something that is at large not a new thing, but surely is new exciting enough. Uhlig doesn't produce that many works but when he does, it's a great one."
Vital Weekly [more]
"..."Supper" continues where it's predecessor left off. It's a stunning album of tightly controlled tonalities slowly winding a meandering path to it's chosen destination. Nothing you can do will hurry this album along. If you give it too much focus it seems to slow down almost to a complete halt. It's best to just relax into it and allow it to carry you along. Uhlig introduces new sounds, colours and textures with such calm dexterity that often it is impossible to notice their arrival until you are utterly caught up in them. This is a stunning album that you should seek out post haste."
Wonderful Wooden Reasons [more]
"Dichiaro subito senza alcuna vergogna che il brano che più ho apprezzato di questo strano disco è la ghost track. Laddove i brani ‘regolari' passano da territori ambient e microsuoni vicini alla tradizione Stephan Mathieu (o se vogliamo ormai al nostrano Punck), con sommessi scricchiolii concreti lontani immersi in una coltre di droni melodici, talvolta spezzati da suoni di stampo chiaramente analogico, il meraviglioso pezzo finale sorprende, senza titolo e senza riferimenti nella track list, per la sua chitarra acustica a fare da sfondo a dei belati di pecore, registrati chissà dove. Non è professionale, ma lo posso dire: mi ha fatto impazzire. Già di suo il disco è splendido, ed è il degno seguito al live su Nextera in compagnia di Dronaement: rilassante ed al tempo stesso vario, articolato, ricco, stratificato, a tratti molto melodico e dunque vicino ad opere Kraut-Rock..."
Sound and Silence [more]
"Wer dachte, dass Mirko Uhlig den Wahnsinn schon auf den vorherigen Opera ausgereizt hätte, muss sich "Supper" zulegen, wo der Ausnahmekünstler in Sachen verquaste Thematik und Tonkunst neue Maßstäbe setzt. Heißt, inhaltlich war er noch nie so abgedreht und musikalisch noch nie so geschlossen wie perfekt – meine absolute Kaufempfehlung den Individuen, die Mirko Uhlig genauso schätzen wie meine Wenigkeit! Der Rest hört einfach mal rein und entscheidet dann!?"
Kultur Terrorismus [more]
"Was bewegte Mirko Uhlig, eigentlich als Aalfang Mit Pferdekopf unterwegs und als Ex Ovo Labelchef tätig, sein neues Album mal wieder ohne Pseudonym zu veröffentlichen und es "Supper" zu nennen? Die Spur führt uns nach Italien. Nicht nur, dass sich das dort ansässige Label Afe Records der Veröffentlichung von "Supper" angenommen hat, nein, dieses Land und seine Einwohner sind auch dafür verantwortlich, dass eine ganz bestimme Platte Mirko Uhlig in seiner Jugend beeinflussen konnte. Darauf nimmt er auf "Supper" Bezug und erinnert sich daran auf seine ganz spezielle Weise (es handelt sich augenscheinlich um das "Foxtrot" - Album von Genesis, das u.a. durch Eindrücke der Band von Konzerten in Italien beeinflusst wurde)..."
Die Medienkonverter [more]
"Mirko Uhlig's "Supper" has a fascinating backstory, but in the end, it's all about the timbre, resonance and vibration of one track, "My Child Goes To the Surf (2nd)". Uhlig is a true explorer, questing to find new continents of sound. Sometimes he merely discovers islands, but these too are rich and exotic. Thus the five other tracks off the coast of "My Child...". They are enigmas, opening acts, sketches, deliberate false starts, and a closing track, "Old Clouds", that has a calming, centering effect. Attached is a seventh, unmentioned track which breaks with all that precedes it – an "old acoustic guitar" and a "battered accordion" engaged in a spirited pastoral conversation. You can hear lambs baa-ing in the background. Perhaps mutton is what's for supper. What it's mainly about, then, purely aethetically, is the massive, twenty-three-minute long third track. Uhlig works up to it with the "1st"” part of "My Child Goes To the Surf", in which the drone sneaks up as a backdrop to a series of small concrete gestures, literally getting bonked on the head before making the transition onto the ambient plateau. And then Uhlig uncoils the almost Platonically perfect drone..."