6 tracks / 34:02 min / 46.83 MB
Stories in Front of Your Eyes
In modern society, people more and more tend to see technology as something given. Because of the huge degree of specialization they are unable to understand the manufacturing processes and therefore unable to connect to any of the things they eat, wear or use in everyday life. Many of them are involved in the production of one of these items themselves, but they do not care whether they are getting their money for producing a tire or a coffee cup.
Since nobody cares of his result, nobody regards the coffee cups people buy to use in offices as items of personal value. As there seldomly remain any other signs of human individuality in workspaces but these functional objects no one is used to look at, people get more and more depressed about their work - a necessarily big part of their life - and get the feeling of being replaceable, small parts of a system that somehow developed to work automatically.
As there is no new land to be discovered on earth and no further space to escape to, there is no other way of improving our quality of life than by discovering our immediate surrounding. We will have to take a close look at all the details of urban and global living and decide, which of the systems of our predecessors work and which have to be built anew. Most important of all, we will have to understand that all social systems are just based on convention and we are able and obligated to change them.
Dedicated to my grandparents
Surround by Renniac, released on Stadtgruenlabel, is an EP that softly treads through a landscape of over-saturated and melancholic ambience. There are elements that remind me of phonographic experiments, and the notes that accompany Surround and the name itself nod towards this direction. This is most obvious in Neuland, which one might assume features recordings of René’s garden. It starts and ends with birdsong, quite apt for spring.
Renniac isn’t afraid of expressing emotion, and the best moments in Surround are when this is prominent. Occasionally glitchy, noisy sounds mutate into melodies, which happens wonderfully in Still, and Around The World.
Surround is diverse, and I was surprised to hear vocals in Everything That Reminds Me. They’re very restrained, and sometimes seem a little underproduced, but the overall feeling works well, reminiscent of David Sylvian singing on Transit by Fennesz. In some ways I can’t help feel that René has tried to reduce the impact of the vocals by restraining them, since being the only vocals in the whole release they stand out a little bit. But that’s not to say I’d take them out, they demonstrate what Renniac may be capable of in the future.
Alex Young / Homepage