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Ordered Chaos of Forms

Pure, graceful shapes in nature, architecture, and music are the things that delight eye and ear. Tastes may vary, but aesthetically, certain proportions appeal more intensely to the senses than others. It is not without reason that the tonal relationship C / F# (the exact bisection of the octave), with its strong ability to create tension, has entered history as "Diabolus in Musica". Based on these two pitches and their harmonics, the Swiss post-minimal-rock-band Sonar present music on their debut album "a Flaw of Nature" whose impact emerges from the reduction and superimposition of the thematic material and maximized exactitude. The compositions by Stephan Thelen, the US-Swiss band leader with connections to Liechtenstein, are inspired by numerical ratios, geometrical patterns and symmetries. They evoke a sonic universe whose formal austerity may appear rather urban and cool. However, he or she who succumbs and arrives at the core of this "Sonic Architecture", is fascinated by the multifarious variations of the perceived spaces which are never crossed twice. The repetitive-pulsing, almost trance inducing ambient character of the pieces - with the occasional disruptions alluding to rock - succeeds by the consistent treatment of the in itself tractable base material into complex stratifications. As such, guitars and bass play the same melodic figure in their respective individual tempi resulting in a juncture only after 21 beats. Additionally, using the special, pure tuning of the guitars (Stephan Thelen, Bernhard Wagner) and bass (Christian Kuntner) layered atop the apparently seamlessly adjustable sonic spectrum of the drums (Manuel Pasquinelli), the formation develops a unique sound, that concedes their natural oscillation space to the overtones. On February 13th, at 6 pm Sonar are to be experienced live at the Liechtensteinischen Landesmuseum.
Denise Kronabitter, Liechtensteiner Vaterland, 28 Jan 2013