[CD, Tympanik Audio]
SE is German Sebastian Ehmke’s solo project which takes its name from the initial letters of his first and last name. Having recorded albums for friends and associates in the past, Ehmke joins the critically acclaimed Chicago-based Tympanik Audio label to release is debut album “Epiphora”. The word epiphora is a medical term meaning an overflow of tears due to a blocked tear duct. Perhaps fittingly, the album itself is intensely personal, although crafted to reflect Ehmke’s mood as he composed each track. Combining at times ethereal fluid ambience with ticking, restless and fidgety digital clicks, ticks and grinds, Ehmke creates music that is intensely moody whilst at the same time experimental and creative. The glitchy digital elements are often reminiscent of older Autechre and the days when Warp led the way with their ground breaking Artificial Intelligence series. “Epiphora” however is not derivative; it takes those elements and pairs them with dark soundscapes and emotive backdrops to create a carefully sculpted mood or scene for each track. Limited to just 333 copies, “Epiphora” also includes three remixes from Flaque, Quench and Dnn & Huron. Flaque’s remix of “23ro And Th3 5t4r5” de-glitches the original track in favour of emphasising the jabbing IDM break whilst staying true to its spirit. Both Quench (the wonderful Funcken brothers of Funckarma fame) and Dnn & Huron both tackle the mellow track “15mg”; Quench choosing to reconfigure it into a jittery electronic masterpiece with a massive dubby sub-bass and a steady crushing beat whilst Dnn & Huron keep it super mellow, using melancholy piano keys and hollow bassy beats. All three remixes are excellent contributions to a strong debut album from Ehmke and another winner from the Tympanik Audio label.
Published by Side-line [July 19th 2009]