For Record Store Day 2013 we are bringing back to vinyl two landmark albums from Oval : 1994’s systemisch and 1995’s 94diskont. These albums took the world of electronic music and turned it on its head and caused Oval’s Markus Popp to be credited as the creator of what was later dubbed the “glitch” or “clicks & cuts” style.
The extremely influential 1994 classic album from Oval is finally re-issued on vinyl. Freshly cut to vinyl by Roger Seibel at SAE Mastering the two LPs are pressed on clear vinyl and housed in black paper inner sleeves, packaged in a jacket replicating the original. Included for the first time is a free download coupon. Limited to 1,500 units worldwide.
systemisch was the debut Oval album released on Thrill Jockey. On this recording Oval was Markus Popp, Sebastian Oschatz and Frank Metzger.
“The softly murmuring polyrhythmic layers of “Textuell” would be lulling were they not punctuated by an unsettling, off-kilter skip that morphs throughout the album, recalling spastic castanets, tiny machine guns, or the highly amplified sound of insects munching leaves. As the tracks drone and thrum and loom, mini-melodies surface in a textured collage of molten globs and arid shards.” - EMusic
Oval music is not so much about "music" as it is about watching systems occasionally dealing with technical implementations of music; computers, software and especially music metaphors, residing in contemporary hard- and software environments.
Oval music in itself is illusory, asimulacrum of musical movement- over time- very similar to contemporary animation film - that in fact only flows with the innovations in digital technology, highlighting certain problematic constellations of musical as well as user-interface-technology alongside the way. The paramount aim is to keep up with things, stay in the media and to observe these numerous and substantial transitions, music as well as visual media artifacts have gone through in recent years. To quote Markus "I see my task as not to artistically "explore", but to rather vigorously comment on these transitions by a consise analysis of the actual conditions and nonetheless contribute a sizeable input into the cultural system. Of course you have to tackle a few musical paradigms alongside the way, if you want to get your point across, but that just came with it"
Oval music is about media, aesthetic presence, organized sound, composed out of the remnants of both music and musicality. Markus further explains " Most of my effort goes into avoiding most of something that is usually called or referred to as a percievable 'expressive momentum' in both process and musical result but to provide an insight into contemporary digital audio workspace components instead of retaining the 'creative' myth of the intentional; subjective author in charge of technology. The paramont 'musical' concern in my work is to render the resulting tracks a transparent- you might call it even slightly didactic- result of both aesthetic descision making as well as mere coordination of digital equipment and the execution of implemented features.
Oval "performances" are in the form of sound instillations and/or software presentations. Oval have several visual pieces to accompany their music. They have two "self protraits" that were used in a German feature film about electronic music. Oval's videos have been screened at the Art Cologne, several european film festivals, as well as MTV europe.