In Profile: B.Visible
8 December 2014
When thinking of Austrian music, I’m ashamed to say (well, not really) that the song that instantly comes to mind is Falco’s catchy pop anthem ‘Rock Me Amadeus’, as well as the various parodies that followed.
Of course, Austrian musical vocabulary is not (and should not) be limited to a multihued-wigged Falco beckoning an 18th century composer to “come and rock” him, no matter how iconic his pop-star status is. To be perfectly honest, I didn’t really know enough about the scene in Austria till I got in touch with German native and producer CEE.
CEE (who now lives in Malaysia), had great things to say about the country, especially after his trip to Tokyo for the 2014 round of Red Bull Music Academy, citing Cid Rim (LuckyMe/ Affine Records) and of course, Ninja Tune’s Dorian Concept (“he’s the man”) as some of the country’s foremost musicians. Add to that clubs like the Pratersauna and event organisations like the Loud Minority, and you have a thriving industry that only seems to be growing by the year. Less well-known talents like The Clonius, Stereotyp, Joyce Muniz and the impressive Brenk Sinatra, a beatmaker who CEE calls “the new J Dilla” are slowly emerging from the underground into the spotlight.
A member of that bubbling musical community is B.Visible. The producer doesn’t have a lot of information about himself online - all we know is that he’s a Viennese male known to his peers as ‘Peter’, and that he produces very enjoyable music. We also happen to know that he’ll be dropping by the desert to play at Magnetic Fields Festival this year, and knowing the kind of music he makes, we couldn’t be more excited. We got in touch with the beatsmith, tired after a heavy weekend, to find out more about his style, influences and what he’s excited about with his visit to the subcontinent.
B. Visible has been producing and DJing since he first laid hands on a pair of turntables back in 2004. His two part beat heavy EP ‘Order and Chaos’ is his debut release with French underground electronic label Cosmonostro.
The producer describes himself as a part time graphic designer and part time beatmaker and DJ. Telling us about contemporary Austrian musical culture – “I think it’s really nice at the moment. A lot of promoters are actually on this new beat-scene movement and there are plenty of parties every weekend. There are also labels like Affine, Shash or Duzz Down San with a great output of electronic and forward thinking music.”
So where did his interest in turntablism and production emerge from? “I actually started collecting records way before learning the DJ stuff. It took me some time to finally get two record players and a mixer, but from that point on I was totally into it.”
Peter told us that he was at the time a big fan of the Waxolutionists, one of the first established DJ crews in Austria, and it was his drive to see them live that urged him into the world of electronic music. “ I might have seen turntablism on TV before (this was before Youtube), but this whole live experience gave me the final motivation to save some money and get me a setup as soon as possible.”
B.Visible truly made his presence felt with the first half of ‘Chaos and Order’: “I chose the word ”Chaos” as I was working with no boundaries regarding samples or bpm range and also tried to avoid instruments I got used to in my production process.”
“Chaos” might be a small release, but it sure as hell packs a punch. All 4 tracks on it are robust, melodic and arranged beautifully with lots of choppy vocal samples and innovatively structured, subtle percussion. Peter says of the EP that he created it according to mood, moving out of his comfort zone and experimenting with sonic elements that he normally doesn’t employ. His typical style is hard to catagorise, but if we were to hazard an attempt, we’d say that it falls within that happy space in electronica that’s equal parts experimental and accessible. It doesn’t hurt that B.Visible’s sound is also incredibly dance floor friendly.
‘Catch’ has already been played over 200,000 times on SoundCloud, and the number doesn’t seem to be decelerating - unsurprising with it’s earworm beat and restless melody which won’t leave your head for days. ‘Wild’ features an equally addictive vocal repetition, though the third chiptune(ish) track ‘Rush’ is the most straightforward dance oriented number with its movable 8-bit synths and beats. ‘Chaos’ ends with the lazy melodies of the relatively chilled out, groove heavy ‘Sunset’.
The forthcoming “Order” EP, on the other hand, sticks to the styles, structures and instrumentation that B.Visible is familiar with – “I still tried to get some of my flavor packed into it”.
Despite using Indian vocal samples in the past (“Very Sorry” on the ‘Para Batik’ EP loops a ridiculously catchy Indian vocal snippet), his trip to India will be B.Visible’s first proper taste of local sounds, contemporary and otherwise. We asked him if he knew anything about the scene here – “If I’m honest, it’s not really about the music scene, but I’d love to dig for tabla and sitar music. That’s how I found the sample for “Very Sorry”. I’m also looking forward to bringing some records home from my trip.”
As time’s ticking away and each second brings us closer to round two of Magnetic Fields, we asked B.Visible what he is looking forward to most with this trip to the festival and India – “I saw the video from last year and it looks amazing. There are so many great artists performing and the scenery is beautiful. Can’t wait to see it in reality. I’m stoked to be a part of the line up.”
Based on what we’ve heard so far, we’re pretty stoked he’s getting to broadcast his lush, completely absorbing sounds to an Indian audience at Magnetic Fields and represent the contemporary Austrian electronica community.
THE SAME 3 QUESTIONS
3 most inspirational artists:
3 favourite albums of all time:
RJD2 – Deadringer
Gang Starr – Moment of Truth
Menahan Street Band – Make the Road by Wakling
3 favourite artists of the moment:
Words: Diya Gupta