As joint heads of the German-based label Raster-Noton, and with their respective solo projects, they have been releasing work that spectacularly blurs the lines between the visceral and the conceptual, bridging the gap between gallery and dance floor.
Opening the EP series is Technology At The Speed Of Life / Empowering Change. The combined effect of these tracks’ crisp, synthetic surfaces and the slogans hyper real imagery is two-fold, drawing attention to the sinister utopias the titles suggest, while also hinting at their inherent absurdity.
“Diamond Version is a project born out of a live situation. We occasionally performed encores together after our solo sets. These spontaneous and improvised tracks always had a kind of “special energy” which we missed in our solo works.”
“Diamond Version tries to capture this energy and combines it with conceptual ideas: every day we are exposed to the Daily Short Message Information Culture (DSMC), the aesthetic of this information system became a strong topic and a Blueprint of the visual identity of the Diamond Version project.” explains Diamond Version.
Diamond Version’s aesthetic is charged with surreal and subversive humour, drawing titles and iconography from a host of corporate slogans which are used as track titles across the releases. “We both are obsessed with company logos,” says Nicolai. “We collected these slogans and started reading them, without knowing the companies. In this amount and concentration they become absurd.”
The duo have known one another since they were teenagers growing up in Germany. A common ground proved intuitively easy to tap into. “Carsten and I share a strong interest in rhythmic music. We also share an idea of general aesthetic, as in design, and prefer even in music, more and more roughness. With Diamond Version we will follow this rough rhythmic direction, we are not DJs and we’re less interested in delivering a functional music to a social situation,” Bender explains, though he’s keen to emphasise that despite its very powerful presence, Diamond Version is not simply a project aimed at club floors. “It’s a bit harsh, and a bit more noisy , but this is not the main focus.”
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