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Ursula Bogner - Sonne = Blackbox


Tauhid
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Ursula Bogner was born in Dortmund in 1946, earned a degree in pharmacy, moved to Berlin at the age of 19 and developed a keen interest in electronic music. Throughout her early twenties, she followed the activities of Cologne-based ‘Studio für elektronische Musik’, attended seminars by Studio founder Herbert Eimert, exhibited great enthusiasm for Musique Concrète and, later on, shared her children’s enthusiasm for British New Wave Pop. She bought some equipment and in the late 60's made numerous recordings to reel-to-reel tape which lay undiscovered by the outside world until a chance meeting with her son led Jan Jelinek to acquire the tapes a few years ago.

 

However, since Jelinek's Faitiche imprint first brought Bogner's work to the world's attention 3 years ago, many have speculated that the whole thing was in fact an elaborate hoax and that the material was most likely made by Jelinek himself. Even after an exhibition in France earlier this year purporting to show drawings, sketches & photographs by Bogner, sceptics refused to accept the proclaimed provenance of the material.

 

Regardless, Faitche now present this gorgeous new collection, available as a 16 track vinyl pressing, or as a special edition that includes a 16 track CD plus a 127 page book exploring the very issue of whether or not Bogner is the real deal or, in fact, part of a fine tradition of "Fake" art. The book also includes a series of reproductions of line drawings and notes made by Bogner, presumably offering more tangible evidence of her existence.

 

The audio itself is intriguing, on 'Or Dor Melanor', 'Shepard Monde' and the title track, Broadcast and Stereolab immediately come to mind, while the eerie synthetic ramble of 'Trabant' sounds like the Ghost Box crew relocated from Belbury to Berlin. 'Signalfluss' and particularly 'Uranotypie' with its combo of droning, minimal electronics and Teutonic spoken voice, sound like vital cold wave (cold war?) artefacts, while the playful, impish quality of 'Der Chor Der Oktaven' and 'Permutationen' (before it lapses into a kind of slanted techno groove) invoke the BBC Radiophonic Workshop's John Baker and Delia Derbyshire. The album closes with a track called 'Liner Notes', a wonderfully earnest dissection (in English) of Bogner's methods - an excellent coda to a captivating listen.

 

Whatever you want to believe, make no mistake, this is a truly delightful collection of primitive electronic music and quite simply a must for all dedicated electronic explorers. Whether this package is illustrative of Jelinek's commitment to working Bogner's legacy, or of the lengths he's willing to go to for the sake of this particular work of sonic fiction - he's worthy of high praise for feeding us this much food for thought, and a brilliant accompanying soundtrack to boot.

 

http://boomkat.com/collections/ursula-bogner-sonne-blackbox?utm_source=Boomkat+Production&utm_campaign=7e6365551d-Book_and_CD_from_Ursula_Bogner&utm_medium=email

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nicely executed hoax too. There are a lot of hoaxers popular in the scene right now- Fullerton Whitman, Basinski, Jelinek. Pretty cool! they did a better job than i did at keeping it mostly a secret though.

...except Jan Jelinek mentioned in an interview several years ago he would later release vintage-sounding music as a made up character. He could have been more discreet about Ursula Bogner.

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Guest squarewave

Just got this on vinyl and it's really good, although pretty different from the first one. Some of it is almost pop, but really weird german pop and there are a couple of music concrete type experiments.

I'm not so sure about this whole hoax thing though. About half of the tracks here have vocals - real female vocals - pretty hard to fake. Also there are pretty extensive liner notes written by Andrew Pekler who, it says "assembled and compiled" the recordings. I haven't seen the book yet but I've read that there are five or six contributors so maybe there are more people involved than just Jan Jelinek?

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  • 2 weeks later...

nicely executed hoax too. There are a lot of hoaxers popular in the scene right now- Fullerton Whitman, Basinski, Jelinek. Pretty cool! they did a better job than i did at keeping it mostly a secret though.

 

what's with kfw and basinski being "hoaxers"? not familiar with this notion.

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Guest Lucy Faringold

nicely executed hoax too. There are a lot of hoaxers popular in the scene right now- Fullerton Whitman, Basinski, Jelinek. Pretty cool! they did a better job than i did at keeping it mostly a secret though.

 

what's with kfw and basinski being "hoaxers"? not familiar with this notion.

 

I believe some folk think a bunch of the stuff KFW reissues on Creel Pone are actually his own work. I'd be surprised if some of it wasn't tbh. Not heard anything re. Basinski. Maybe some people have questioned if the whole 'degraded tapes' thing is just a front for a much simpler process? Anyone?

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