FACT mix 641: Alva Noto
An exclusive mix of future-facing techno from avant-garde kingpin Carsten Nicolai, aka Alva Noto.
Carsten Nicolai, better known as Alva Noto, should need barely any introduction on these pages. Nicolai has been challenging established techno concepts since the mid-90s, releasing his minimal experiments first on his Noton label and then on German powerhouse Mille Plateaux, where he began to define his idiosyncratic style.
Taking rhythms from R&B and hip-hop, Nicolai built 2001’s genre-bending Transform, an album that fused pop’s heaving lilt with techno’s relentless forward thrust. Over time, he channeled these ideas into more abstract forms, exploring haunting melodic themes with the Xerrox series of albums and rhythm with Uni series.
More recently, Nicolai has become more widely known for his soundtrack work. In 2015, he teamed up with long-time collaborator Ryuichi Sakamoto to score Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant and while it was controversially deemed ineligible for Oscar consideration, it received nods from both the Golden Globes and the BAFTAs.
Nicolai has a busy year ahead: he recently released an archival collaboration with Mika Vainio and Ryoji Ikeda entitled Live 2002 and Glass, a site-specific collaboration with Ryuichi Sakamoto from 2016. In March, meanwhile, he’s set to release the latest part of the Uni series of albums, UNIEQAV.
Inspired by UNIEQAV‘s heavy club-ready rhythms, Nicolai has put together a special Alva Noto techno mix for FACT, featuring old favorites like Plastikman’s ‘Mind In Rewind’ alongside cuts from Emptyset, Function and Rrose.
UNIEQAV will be released on March 16 via NOTON.
Function – ‘Voiceprint’
Plastikman – ‘Mind In Rewind’
Function – ‘Disaffected’
JPLS – ‘State’
Solomun & Stimming – ‘Ghostdog’
Valmay – ‘Radiated Future’
Sigha – ‘Between Here & Yesterday’
Emtyset – ‘Completely Gone’
Rrose – ‘Waterfall (birth)’
Xhin – ‘Fixing the Error’ (Original Mix)
Alva Noto – ‘Xerrox Spiegel’