Austere/In The Now | distance

Go To Artist Page

Recommended if You Like
Autechre Lumen Monolake Pole Richie Hawtin

Album Links
Austere/In The Now MusicIsHere PayPlay Apple iTunes GreatIndieMusic GroupieTunes Nexhit PassAlong Tradebit

More Artists From
United States - Oregon

Other Genres You Will Love
Electronic: Down Tempo Electronic: IDM Moods: Mood: Quirky
There are no items in your wishlist.

distance

by Austere/In The Now

Lying somewhere between ambient drones and glitchy IDM quirkiness, this EP is a rarely discovered gem enjoyed and played by ambient and IDM DJs alike. Odd-time signatures, crunchy and chunky beats come together to create this ambient drum & bass classic.
Genre: Electronic: Down Tempo
Release Date: 

We'll ship when it's back in stock

Order now and we'll ship when it's back in stock, or enter your email below to be notified when it's back in stock.
Sign up for the CD Baby Newsletter
Your email address will not be sold for any reason.
Continue Shopping
cd in stock order now
Share to Google +1

To listen to tracks you will need to update your browser to a recent version.

  Song Share Time Download
1. Distance
Share this song!
X
7:26 $1.99
2. Submerging
Share this song!
X
9:28 $1.99
3. Disconnected
Share this song!
X
4:51 $1.99
4. Austerity
Share this song!
X
7:42 $1.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Austere/In The Now "distance"
Reviewed by Jack the Tab for Ambient Visions magazine

A 4-track EP with enough quirkiness to drive you insane. There are broken up pieces of winding ambience highlighted by whooshing winds and rain from a summer storm. Slowly mounting into a mirage of synthesizers becoming almost epic sounding. There seems to be a variety of layers, which clang into one another. The second track breaks in with a lo-fi chunky beat. The beat suddenly changes into an overdriven mass, followed by a repetitive droned oscillation. As the track progresses, it builds. This building is rather gradual. The beat changes from a lo-fi sound to something that parallels a hypnotic trance beat. The ambience layered within have a darkened edge, while the chunkiness of the structure becomes its adversary.

With these features, it keeps this EP interesting and moving forward. Track three picks up with the same feeling beat. This beat has less of the lo-fi qualities as presented with the previous track, yet still remains rather chunky and quirky. It tends to border the edges of drum and bass, but with the lack of speed. The final track streams into the chilled-out realm of spacey IDM. The quirky samples still remain and closely resemble that of the first track. Overall this is a nice pace considering the barrage of techno/electronica out these days. The EP stands out on its own, only to strive for a different sound.

------------

Austere
A Biography
By Bill Binkleman
Wind & Wire magazine
http://www.windandwire.com

Austere is an enigmatic duo who record some of the more interesting ambient music I've heard in my six plus years of reviewing. From the swirling drones (I was gonna say "dark" drones, but...) and eerie melancholy of Monodia to the warmth and beauty amidst minimalism of Fade to the cool glitch beats and samples of one of Austere's side project's The Mystifying Oracle's Quintessence (see my review here:
http://www.windandwire.com/may/quintessence.htm)

Austere are less concerned with following the path and more concerned with breaking new ground. However, they are undoubtedly enigmatic, as one would glean from the above, and shun the spotlights of media and personality. However, in my many communiques with them, I have found few artists in this industry who are more polite, engaging, genuine or friendly. If only some of the more "exposed" artists in ambient music were as humble and humane.

Check them out at http://www.austere.org and read more reviews of their work by yours truly here at http://www.windandwire.com.

There, now you and others know as much about Austere as anyone!

Bill


Reviews


to write a review

Gordon Danis

More Dance Than Ambient, But I Still Like It
Who is "In The Now"? Forget about collabs - Austere does it better yourself. What's up with "Submerging," someone in the studio has ants in their pants and they had to dance? This is more like dance music than ambient, which isn't my taste but others my love. More disjointed than "evergone" but don't try to take this baby from me - I love my Austere CDs, and they get played frequently!

Wayne Dolman

Mexican Standoff: Ambient, Glitch & Drum-n-Bass - Who'll Live?
I'm writing this about a year and a half after I first received the CD from the band for review due to a personal hiatus and because to be honest, at first I really didn't get it. Up to the point this CD was released, Austere had been releasing a fairly steady stream of minimalist and ambient recordings, sequestered away in hiding, exploring and never repeating the same sort of thing twice, albeit it's almost impossible not to recognize an Austere track when you hear one... and then this.

I decided to check in with them about it to see if they still wanted it reviewed, and found that they were very disappointed in how poorly it had been selling and had been received. "We pretty much alienated 99.9% of whatever you might call our listener base..." they reported, obviously disappointed. So I immediately had to throw it on for a listen.

And indeed, I can see why that is, although it's really a great loss for those who just want to stay strictly within the ambient "realm" and whose tastes are fairly narrow and well-defined, because this was something Completely Different. First off, it was a collaboration, and a long distance one at that (hence the title) with a fine musician from the UK releasing material as "In The Now", mostly glitchy, percussive electronica tracks with odd time signatures similar to some of the work of Matmos, Monolake, Pole, Plaid and others... a very unlikely wedding of styles and tastes one would think, but therein lies the unappreciated brilliance of this CD.

The best way to describe this four track CDEP is akin to the makings of a perfect sidecar: there's the rich flavor of brandy, the sweetness of triple sec and a sugared rim, the sour of lemon joice and the tart of the oils from the peel, all coming together as a blend of tastes that somehow all stand apart yet work together to create a much, much greater whole. Such is it with "distance": the ambient washes and sweeping, complex and ever-evolving synth lines that are very much Austere, over which play oddly timed percussive crunchy bits, none of which sounds anything like a standard drum sound, real or sampled, the signature of In The Now.

But with these basics from both bands are interesting organic sounding bits that act as choruses and refrains, little synths riffs and pads that work within the structure of each song, and even elements of drum-n-bass, although pitched down to half speed or slower, no 150 BPM action here. And quel horreur for the ambient purist, plenty of clicky, crunchy, chunky beats in every track.

And the results? Something treading all sorts of lines by combining elements one would just assume to be completely at odds with each other into a cohesive whole that really manages to never allow any one element to dominate, except for brief moments where appropriate, but only to tease.

This isn't an easy nor obvious CD, and in some ways is destined to be the weird kid that doesn't fit into any clique, not even the nerds, and not only gets picked last for the game, it's often completely forgotten altogether. And therein lies the beauty, in that the genius of both bands comes together in ways that don't necessarily make sense, but never cease to work. Every track on this all-too-brief EP is brilliant and has a sound unlike anything this reviewer has heard before. And unlike the afforementioned bands, it doesn't sound anything like an Austere or In The Now CD. It is completely and utterly its own unique thing, a niche with a population of one.

For those willing to step outside their boundaries or who think most new music tends to just quickly fall into a rut, this CD proves there's always new places to go if musicians are truly interested in their art and constantly exploring and chasing their muse. This isn't ambient music at all; you can't ignore it, and if anything it's good head music (thus the problem with how brief it is.) It sounds tight and expansive, large yet accessible, and is amazingly produced as are all the projects Austere is involved with... and unlike their ambient works preceeding this, this is a release that not only grabs your attention, it demands it and doesn't let go until the CD ends.

To try and describe the songs does not do them justice. My guess is that either this is one of those wonderful gems that will lay buried, never to be discovered, or something that years from now someone will find and wonder how they managed to miss it but will marvel in how far ahead of its time it was when it came out, and probably still will be. Hats off to In The Now and Austere for creating something this reviewer can see is truly a "classic" in every sense of the word. Hopefully others will have the good taste and fortunate to discover it as I have, and let it spin your head around a few times before, like any carnival ride, ending too soon. If I have one criticism of this release, it's that it's all too brief, and I can only hope that both parties involved can be convinced to work on a full CD some time in the future. But until then, this is living in my CD player for awhile. Amen. -- Wayne Dolman, Jan 2002

Wayne Dolman

Mexican Standoff: Ambient, Glitch & Drum-n-Bass - Who'll Live?
I'm writing this about a year and a half after I first received the CD from the band for review due to a personal hiatus and because to be honest, at first I really didn't get it. Up to the point this CD was released, Austere had been releasing a fairly steady stream of minimalist and ambient recordings, sequestered away in hiding, exploring and never repeating the same sort of thing twice, albeit it's almost impossible not to recognize an Austere track when you hear one... and then this.

I decided to check in with them about it to see if they still wanted it reviewed, and found that they were very disappointed in how poorly it had been selling and had been received. "We pretty much alienated 99.9% of whatever you might call our listener base..." they reported, obviously dismayed. So I had to immediately throw it back on for another listen.

And indeed, I can see why that is, although it's really a great loss for those who just want to stay strictly within the ambient realm and whose tastes are fairly narrow and well-defined, because this is something Completely Different. First off, it was a collaboration, the first for both bands, and a long distance one at that (hence the title) with a fine musician from the UK releasing material as "In The Now", mostly glitchy, percussive electronica tracks with odd time signatures similar to some of the work of Matmos, Monolake, Pole, Plaid and others... a very unlikely wedding of styles and tastes one would think, but therein lies the unappreciated brilliance of this CD.

The best way to describe this four track disc is akin to the makings of a perfect sidecar: there's the rich flavor of brandy, the sweetness of triple sec and a sugared rim, the sour of lemon juice and the tart of the oil from the peel, all coming together as a blend of tastes that somehow all stand apart yet work together to create a much, much greater whole. Such is it with "distance": the ambient washes and sweeping, complex and ever-evolving synth lines that are very much Austere, over which play oddly-timed percussive crunchy bits, most of which sounds nothing like a standard drum sound, real or sampled, a signature sound of In The Now.

But with these basics from both bands are interesting organic sounding bits that act as choruses and refrains, little synths riffs and pads that work within the structure of each song, and even elements of drum-n-bass, although pitched down to half speed or slower, no 150 BPM action here. And quel horreur for the ambient purist, plenty of clicky, crunchy, chunky beats in every track, and even a dubby, funky bass line in "austerity".

And the results? Something treading all sorts of lines by combining elements one would just assume to be completely at odds with each other into a cohesive whole that somehow manages to never allow any one element to dominate, except for brief moments where appropriate, and then only to tease.

This isn't an easy nor obvious CD, and in some ways is destined to be the weird kid that doesn't fit into any clique, not even the nerds, and not only gets picked last for the game, it's often completely forgotten altogether. And therein lies the beauty, in that the genius of both bands come together in ways that don't necessarily make sense, but never cease to work. Every track on this all-too-brief EP is brilliant and has a sound unlike anything this reviewer has heard before. And unlike the aforementioned bands who do something well and stick to it, this doesn't sound anything like an Austere or In The Now CD. It is completely and utterly its own unique thing, a niche with a population of one.

For those willing to step outside their boundaries or who think most new music tends to just quickly fall into a rut, this CD proves there's always new places to go if musicians are truly interested in their art and constantly exploring and pursuing their muse. This isn't ambient music at all; you can't ignore it, and if anything it's good head music (thus the problem with how brief it is.) It sounds tight and expansive, large yet accessible, and is amazingly produced as are all the projects Austere is involved with... and unlike their ambient works preceeding this, this is a release that not only grabs your attention, it absolutely demands it and doesn't let go until the CD ends.

To try and describe the songs does not do them justice. My guess is that either this is one of those wonderful gems that will lay buried, never to be discovered, or something that years from now someone will find and wonder how they managed to miss it as they marvel in how far ahead of its time it was when it came out, and probably still will be even later. Hats off to In The Now and Austere for creating something this reviewer can see is truly a "classic" in every sense of the word. Hopefully others will have the good taste and fortunate to discover it as I have, and let it spin your head around a few times before, like any carnival ride, ending too soon. If I have one criticism of this release, it's that it's too short, and I can only hope that both parties involved can be convinced to work on a full CD some time in the future. But until then, this is living in my CD player for awhile. Amen. -- Wayne Dolman, Jan 2002

Forrest (SunDummy)

Too Short But Otherwise Groovy Percussion
Too short! I do love a good groove; this has lots of 'em. Drums should be fucked-with: too many people trigger sounds, then let them decay w/out editing. I like how the percussion here is filtered, keeps a repetitive groove from getting too static. More!

Jack The Tab (Ambient Review)

A Quirky Collaboration That Crosses Several Genres
A 4-track EP with enough quirkiness to drive you insane (in a good way.) Overall this is a nice pace considering the barrage of techno/electronica out these days. The EP stands out on its own, if only to strive for a different sound.

marcus

interesting
this is an interesting cd. most of the tracks have a disjointed sound to them, but in a good way. there's a heavier beat on these tracks than on other austere albums. i would imagine that's the result of their collaboration with "in the now."

it's the kind of album that i recognize as good, but am rarely in the mood to listen to, if that makes sense. if you're like me and dig more ethereal, relaxing ambient music, i recommend austere's masterpieces "convergence," "fade," and "remittance" first.