Berlin-based musician and producer Matthias Grübel works as a composer soundtracking theatre productions.
Over the years the sound of his solo projects has morphed into a moving and ambitious blend of contemporary electronic music on the one side and the more experimental textures rooted in his stage music work on the other - always with a strong focus on a 'listening' approach in both arrangements and production.
The EP‚ ‘The Longest Year In History' (Audiobulb Records) marked Matthias Grübel’s first release under his real name. In 2020 he follows on from the ‘Atlantika’ single with a work of stature in ‘Matters Of Stability’.
SOFTWARE: Ableton Live, Native Instruments Reaktor.
HARDWARE: Novation Bass Station II, Korg MicroKorg XL, Waldorf Blofeld, Fender Jazzmaster, Fender Concert Amp, various Pedals & Effects.
Matthias Grübel’s latest EP demonstrates the vision and quality of an artist capable of occupying more than one musical world. There is a confidence and maturity in this work with tracks flexing dynamic beats, strong bass and melodic structure. From the strident confidence of Atlantika to the beautifully poignant vocals of Sad Dream #1, this is an artist ready to deliver in the tradition of Apparat or James Holden.
Matthias states that, “this is a record about questions and the rare moments of finding answers. As one finds in shaky times, everything is a matter of stability. It was liberating to focus intensely on this production across 2 months. I tried to think outside any boxes and create something that was fresh and unique, exploring and carefully crafting sonic and emotional spaces alike."
Matters Of Stability is a sharp 24-minute electronica EP that can’t quite seem to decide which way it’s going, and feels like it’s trying to pack an album’s worth of ideas into too small a space. At times, such as when “Neon Primavera” properly gets into its groove, it’s an alternative take on a progressive house or a light techno. Yet there’s a lot more going on besides- particularly a strong emphasis on glitchiness, lo-fi filters, EQ drops, retriggers and playfulness, full of the kind of surprises that entertain the passive listener whilst clearing the dance floor. There’s also a smattering of other acoustic instrumentation, handled with a deft touch. “Neon Primavera” shows a shade of James Holden eventually, after a long intro. “Atlantika” has a slightly harder techno vibe, before “Electric Goodbye” slows things down to a slightly grime-like swagger complete with pitched-down indistinct vocalisations. Each of these pulls the established trick of holding one of its layers back until almost the end of the track, to keep surprises in the pocket and keep things moving- a guitar riff in the former, an industrial mid-tone in the latter. The last two tracks feel like they belong on a different release, almost. “Stars Under The Snow” adds in a live cello sound onto a deeply atmospheric and emotive melody that leaves the more driving rhythms well behind, before “Sad Dream #1” goes a step further and throws in a vocal from Joss Loner and a poppier, almost cinematic vibe. Instead of being a criticism, the quality and controlled energy of the production turn this
EP’s ambitious scope into a virtue. Though built with familiar ingredients it’s a fresh- sounding and to some extent genre-spanning bit of electronica that certainly draws in the ear.
From Berlin, Matthias Grübel is a composer soundtracking theatre productions—his solo project, this time with TruthTable, is a multifaceted array of clinical techno strains and experimental electronic bits featured on Matters Of Stability. Creating upbeat, and sometimes vocalized tracks, this EP comes across as expressive and often detailed with a myriad of microscopic elements that artists like Clark and Apparat have traversed. Instrumental and digital trips through the back corridors of textured techno, these tracks segue to and from each other, tethered by some kind of mechanical backbone Matters Of Stability ultimately breathes life into IDM’s exploratory range focused on synthesizer mechanics and tangible melodies drifting in the upper layers. If “Electric Goodbye” doesn’t give you goosebumps, please check your pulse.
“The texture of a Burial EP combined with the majesty of a Vangelis long player – somehow also unique.”
Berlin-based artist Matthias Grübel blessed the music industry with his latest single entitled “Sad Dream”. Written and performed by himself, sang by Joss Loner, the song is nothing but an exceptional moment of music.
“Sad Dream” is a hybrid between electronic music and sound experimentation. A free and unique structure, no rules except creativity.
Definitely the kind of music that you won’t find anywhere else.
Der Berliner Matthias Grübel, den man eher als Phon°noir kennt, ist ebenfalls Experte für Soundtracks, vor allem für das hiesige Theater. Auf Matters Of Stability (TruthTable) bringt er allerdings die Autoren-Electronica zurück in den Big Room, als Mainfloor-Electro-Techno, der dann wieder ziemlich Moderat klingt – oder in den verstreuten Vocal-Tracks sogar deutlich nach Apparat –, mit vergleichbar durchschlagskräftiger Produktion und ähnlichem Hit-Anspruch.
Taken from the forthcoming EP‚ ‘Matters Of Stability’, the hard-hitting but melancholic ‘Atlantika’ combines gritty multi-layered synths, blurry ambience noises, punchy beats and a minimalistic signature guitar line. The work outlines Grübel’s uncompromising approach - hypnotic, leftfield and electro.
Operating in a zone carved out by Depeche Mode, Modeselektor and Simian Mobile Disco the music is both futuristic and edgy.
Berlin’s Matthias Grübel is a composer for theatre productions by day, and his talents for dramatic story telling shows in Atlantika, his latest single, that comes crashing down on you like a roller coaster in slow motion. Through thick layers of synth and noise, Atlantika opens up an abyss and takes you right onto cliff’s edge, leaving you wishing you were an apnoe diver.
He hasn’t released anything in the past five years and this atmospheric crooner marks the first piece of his upcoming new EP to be released on Sheffield’s infamous TruthTable.