Grains - Numinos
Grains is the debut album by Numinos on Mille Plateaux. The Cologne-based producer, DJ, author and lecturer has been writing the tech-reviews in »Groove« for many years, tests equipment for various specialist magazines and teaches at the Institute for Pop Music (IFPOM) and Institute for Computer Music and Electronic Media (ICEM) of the Folkwang University.In his current creative phase, he conceptually deals with the topic of "granular synthesis".
A “grain” is thus, to a certain extent, a tiny spectral snapshot from a larger musical context - an infinitely expandable, flowing intermediate state. This is also where the connection to the cover motif is found that shows the negative of a photograph of a wild field and has been taken Bernd Adamek-Schyma: The negative as an eternal intermediate state between the motif and the developed image. And despite the fact that “Numinos” has a fully equipped studio with a wide range of instruments, the 20 Euro iPad app "Borderlands Granular" turned out to be the creative catalyst that enabled the trained pianist to implement his sound ideas with direct haptic influence.The app gives the Cologne-based sound artist the opportunity to extract tiny fragments from the sample based on their specific tonality, to recontextualize them and thus work out structures that are not audible at the original tempo.
The results are polyrhythmic sound scenes that appear harsh, artificial and strange in a moment, only to transform into contemplative, warm and familiar frequency stratification minutes later. Numinos deceives the listener in many ways. Above all with the supposed rhythm that does not exist. Because in fact almost all granular clusters within the pieces run in completely asynchronous loops. The addition of a simple kick drum then forces the brain to suddenly hear apparent triplets, quintoles or dotted eighths in these mathematically completely chaotic structures, which are purely fallacy.
The tonality also moves far away from any occidental scales and yet has a harmonious, in some cases downright meditative.The technical method means that everything he does happens in real time. Subsequent editing of individual tracks is not possible - apart from cuts and loudness adjustments. In order to be able to intervene in the sound design at all, "Numinos" used the classic technique of multitrack recording: recording track by track. Since you have to imagine virtually all of the following traces and what will possibly happen on them later, virtually - in your mind's ear - this way of working poses a great challenge to concentration and cognition. The musician therefore went for several Weeks - only equipped with an iPad, headphones and laptop - back to a log cabin on Lake Biggesee to complete “Grains” there in complete seclusion.