Boomkat Product Review:
Alva Noto’s 2000 debut album ‘Prototypes’ is finally, officially available to download for the first time, with a bonus track to boot.
Upon its release, ‘Prototypes’ marked a new high water mark of precision tooled electronic minimalism. Recorded 1999-2000 in Berlin, it morphed inspiration from sculptural work by Austrian artist Walter Pichler, known for his radical architectural work, into a series of ultra sparse, spacious arrangements of icy rhythmic pointillism, dense subbass, and barely there tonal presences for the Mille Plateaux label.
19 years (jeeeeez it’s never that long?!) later the album still sounds exceptional. It’s patently a product of the glitch era, yet future-proofed by its meticulously minimalist, near-elemental approach to the fundamentals of sound and music. Carsten Nicolai aka Alva Noto’s solo music has remained mostly minimalist ever since, but has taken on some more fleshly body over the years, leaving ‘Prototype’ as a skeletal Ur-text reminder of where he and electronic music have been and gone over the past 2 decades.