Nils Frahm // “Said And Done” (via Erased Tapes)

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Biography

Nils Frahm, born in 1982, had an early introduction to music. During his childhood he was taught to play piano by Nahum Brodski – a student of the last scholar of Tschaikowski. It was through this that Nils began to immerse himself in the styles of the classical pianists before him as well as contemporary composers. Today Nils Frahm works as an accomplished composer and producer in Berlin. In 2008 he founded Durton Studio, where he has worked with Deaf Center from Norway, L.A. composer Dustin O’ Halloran and Portland’s Peter Broderick amongst other fellow musicians.

In late 2008 label comrade Peter Broderick encouraged Nils to record a new album of piano improvisations – the result is ‘The Bells’, which was released on Erased Tapes worldwide in late 2009. Perhaps the most stunning aspect of what on the surface appears to be an entirely pre-planned and composed body of work comes with the discovery that these pieces were in fact improvised. These two friends share a common affinity in that they both possess an absolute mastery of melody, composition and performance – able to deliver with devastating effect. The modest Mr. Broderick states ‘I remember thinking to myself as I lay there stunned, that I could spend ten years trying to write an amazing piece of piano music, and still it would never be half as good as these improvisations!’

Recorded in a rented, beautiful old church in the heart of Berlin over two nights, Nils ‘just played’ with the occasional instruction from Peter ‘I spouted “Make a song using only the notes C, E, and G”, or “Make a song that you could imagine me rapping over the top of” (Track 8 – ‘My Things’). At one point I was even inside the piano, laying on the strings, asking him to make a song called ‘Peter Is Dead In The Piano’. The resultant work ‘The Bells’ shares the same excitement and air of playfulness.

Recorded in a rented, beautiful old church in the heart of Berlin over two nights, Nils ‘just played’ with the occasional instruction from Peter ‘I spouted “Make a song using only the notes C, E, and G”, or “Make a song that you could imagine me rapping over the top of” (Track 8 – ‘My Things’). At one point I was even inside the piano, laying on the strings, asking him to make a song called ‘Peter Is Dead In The Piano’. The resultant work ‘The Bells’ shares the same excitement and air of playfulness.

The three instrumentals, which make up his prior mini album release ‘Wintermusik’ are also piano led pieces, but coloured with occasional celeste and reed organ parts. The record’s equal measures of sorrowful refrains and uplifting passages, combined with a real intimacy that makes for an album you’ll want to treasure.

For a musician this early in his career, Frahm displays an incredibly developed sense of control and restraint in his work, catching the ear of many fans including Thom Yorke, who featured one of Nils’ songs in Radiohead’s HQ office chart. As the recognition continues to grow for his previous solo piano works ‘Wintermusik’ and ‘The Bells’, we are pleased to announce that late 2011 will see his next solo album release on Erased Tapes.

A tantalising taste of what’s to come, the new digital single ‘Unter | Über’ is a rather microscopic affair and yet a record that perfectly captures the last days of summer before winter sets in. The under two-minute song twins must be one of the shortest singles released this year. Recorded on Nils’ own piano in his Berlin studio flat, these are two of the most personal and optimistic pieces of music we have heard in a long time. Entwined impeccably these are tracks you can listen to over and over again.

Fans of Nils Frahm are by now familiar with his beguiling live shows where more often than not fellow touring artists are encouraged to join Frahm on stage – the likes of Rachel Grimes, Rob Lowe of Balmorhea as well as label colleagues Peter Broderick, Ólafur Arnalds and Dustin O’Halloran have all obliged with fascinating results. It will come as no surprise then that Nils Frahm, an accomplished composer and producer, has extended his collaborative live musings to encompass the recording studio, working for the first time with noted cellist and fellow Berliner Anne Müller to produce ‘7fingers’.

With their first collective release Frahm and Müller have built a world where modern classical and electronica collide creating an ‘intoxicating and delicious’ collection of songs. Primarily a pianist Nils Frahm provides evidence with 7fingers that he can effortlessly turn electric throwing in loops, samples and glitches to accompany and showcase Müller on cello. Anne Müller, a renowned musician noted for her work with the Wolf-Ferrari-Ensemble, Phillip Boa and recent tours with Agnes Obel, proves an amp musical partner for Frahm.

Besides several solo concerts in Europe and his first visit to the United States, 2011 will also see Nils Frahm and Anne Müller premiere their unique live set at selected festivals.”

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