On his internationally praised album debut “What If We Don’t Exist?” from 2018, Zirbs still pursued the big question of whether we exist at all. Zirbs’ musical mixture of futuristic synth-pop, graceful ambient and minimal music even prompted an American music critic to compare it with David Bowie’s legendary album Low. On Zirbs’ latest EP “On A Beautiful Day” (2020) it is rather the simultaneity and contrariness of our time that fascinate Zirbs. The phase we are currently going through as mankind – from collapse to new beginnings and the very personal in this process. What seemed unthinkable a year ago has in any case become everyday life.
With the charismatic former Archive frontman Craig Walker, Zirbs has invited an international guest to the studio for the single “Locked In”. He wrote the lyrics to the song in autumn 2019 and was inspired by an old interview with the legendary singer Nico. Today these lyrics, which were written at that time, read frighteningly up-to-date.
Already on Peter Zirbs’ previous releases there are numerous, often experimental instrumental compositions. With a new fully instrumental EP “Splinters”, which will be released in September 2021, Peter Zirbs gives more space to this artistic side and underlines his musical versatility. For the first single herald “Splinter I” he playfully blends minimal music, piano and synthesizer sounds into electronic and hypnotic miniatures that develop an addictive undertow. Musically, Zirbs again processes his view of current facts and realities to which we are accustomed, and which seem to dissolve into a thousand pieces before our eyes – and can no longer be joined to the original shape.
Peter Zirbs: “Splinters is a small collection of instrumental tracks that were created in the past 12 months. I have taken up topics and feelings that have touched me. The tracks are not so much an examination of the content of these themes, feelings and terms, but rather a method of dealing with my discomfort – so to say a cure, a relief and support. For the track “Splinter II (Prime Numbers)” I experimented with prime numbered time signatures. The effect on the brain is almost something like a desynchronization of the cerebral hemispheres. After the quasi-romantic tracks of the previous releases, I’m trying to break down my boundaries and incorporate more experimentation; translating vague feelings into music.”
Before this fully instrumental EP release Peter Zirbs started the summer 2021 with a special collaboration. Together with French singer and songwriter Christelle Constantin, he released “Ideal” in June – an electronic/new wave-tinged lead single to a new powerful song-driven EP, which is coming in late autumn. For this EP, Zirbs once again invited a handful of illustrious international guests to his studio.
As part of the Viennese techno scene of the 1990s, multi-instrumentalist Peter Zirbs has released music under several pseudonyms and on various labels, such as EMI, Automatique or Fabrique. He has broken down genre boundaries over the years with the variety of his output. Zirbs experimented with analog synthesizers in the scene’s infancy, and found success with his energetic and raw productions. His electronic music collective konsorten™ earned considerable airplay across the German-speaking world, he also produced for other artists and was responsible for the score of three praised short animation films (2002) by director Thomas Aigelsreiter, which were presented at over 30 film festivals worldwide.
The circle closed in the year 2018. More than two decades after his first electronic releases, Peter Zirbs finally stepped into the spotlight as a solo artist and received special praise from an American music blogger for his successful solo debut: “The closest and most apt sonic comparison for Zirbs’ album debut “What If We Don’t Exist?” would be David Bowie’s Low, with its mixture of futurist Synth-Pop and graceful ambient music” (by Forestpunk)
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Photo © Tim Cavadini