Oberst & Buchner are two friends and musicians living between Vienna and Berlin. They look back on a mutual musical journey that is as rich in variety as it is long. For one thing, countless high-energy DJ sets in clubs and at festivals all over Europe in recent years have earned them a reputation as a dynamic duo infernale. At the same time, their own productions draw from the full palette of moods and emotions.
Boiled down to the very essence, there’s one common denominator running through the duo’s musical works: colossally massive elements are masterfully set against a shimmering backdrop of incredibly detailed layers. Each so full of subtle suspense that they feel like the first raindrops before a monstrous thunderstorm. You can literally hear the calm before the storm in every break they build up, then feel the force of the wind in your face when it hits you.
Ranging from pulsating electronica over slow organic sounds derived from both nature and acoustic instruments to deep dance pop ballads, their songs are full of suspense and packed with drama. In their productions, the two friends conjure up soundscapes that are extremely dense and at the same time infinitely open and spacious. Within this framework, they play with stark contrasts of antithetic elements: repetition and improvisation, functionality and emotions, emptiness and overload, clarity and crackling.
Each track of Oberst & Buchner’s debut album “Sfumato” is rich with anticipation and residue – it feels like being taken on a very controlled journey through space and time by another life form. The two friends and musicians from Vienna and Berlin shift themes and melodies gradually into one another, producing billowing pieces of music with soft and foggy outlines. Just like you can get lost in the perfection of a single brush stroke in a renaissance painting from up close, if you step away you can’t help but admire the planning, skill and instinct coming together in this album and every single track. The two producers almost seem to make use of the sounds that are not there, triggering our expectations and creating premonitions in our minds.
The complex sound patterns are frequently juxtaposed by simple, almost naive melodies that make everything feel innately known but alien at the same time. On “Eye Liquor” the feature guest Tobias Koett brings just the right amount of fragility and humanity to offset the moodily awakening fantastic sonic beast beneath. With analogue sounds the two celebrate the past and the future, creating murmuring, breathing streams of consciousness. We couldn’t be more excited to see where the travels lead. The album is released digitally and on vinyl on 1st March 2019 via Hold Your Ground.