Mulholland Drive, 1984

by Anders Brørby

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Dotflac Dark and surrealist, Mulholland Drive, 1984 sounds like the direct sequel of the dystopian Nihil.

Anders Brørby expresses an existential determinism without giving in to fatality, he certainly yields towards nostalgia but also considers the foreseeable futures, he likes the blackness and doesn't forget it has no value without its antagonist.

More volatile and ephemereal than Nihil, this album still reaches the same intentions : the duality of existence invariably outlives its own extinction. Favorite track: Persuasion of Existence.
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Hylé Tapes 033 : "Mulholland Drive, 1984" by Anders Brørby

Side A

Mulholland Drive, 1978
Black Room
Mulholland Drive, 1984
Persuasion of Existence

Side B:

Room With a Different View
The Unhappiest Places on Earth
A Sudden Sense of Loss
Deconstruction of Mirages
Handheld Weapon

"Mulholland Drive, 1984" is a continuation of the dark ambient and abstract soundscapes from previous records “Nihil” and “Music For Imaginary Scenarios” from Oslo-based sound artist and composer Anders Brørby. Often working in a similar musical direction as fellow Norwegian Helge Sten (aka Deathprod) and the likes of Fennesz, Tim Hecker and William Basinski, Brørby creates atmospheric soundpaintings from processed field recordings, granular synth-works, loops and improvised laptop sessions. “Mulholland Drive, 1984” is very much a cinematic album, and works as the soundtrack for imaginary scenes and images taking place inside the listeners head. As the title suggests, these images often draw inspiration from the abstract and sinister corners of the world of David Lynch, as well as other masters of atmospheric tension, such as Dario Argento, Werner Herzog, Pier Pasolini and other influences for the composer."

Written, recorded and produced by Anders Brørby
Mastered by Jon Du at Lonely God Records, Taipei
Artwork by Anders Brørby


Anders Brørby – Mulholland Drive, 1984
5.22.17 by Ryan Durfee

"Released by the always excellent Hylé Tapes in a now sold out edition of 50 copies, Anders Brørby‘s “Mulholland Drive, 1984″ is a perfect album for the late spring, with it’s ominous tones bringing to mind mist enshrouded forests and decaying cities. The title of course is a David Lynch reference, something you can hear that in the DNA of the album, but what this cassette most brings to my mind is J.G. Ballard’s The Drowned World. I can picture the second track, “Black Room,” playing as the men touch down in the deep jungle, it’s watery tones mirroring the submerged landscape. Another choice cut is the six and a half minute “Persuasion of Existence.” Clattering accents reflect the unease felt by Dr. Kerans while trying to navigate the emotional malaise brought on by the humid jungle – And maybe a tinge of Tim Hecker.

One of the few missteps on an otherwise excellent album would be “Defeat.” While still a good song, it throws off the smooth flow of the album with the vocals. A flow Anders immediately brings back with the haunting synths of “Room With A Different View,” soothing as you begin to formulate a way to escape from the waterlogged city. In what will most likely end up as a personal favorite from this tape “A Sudden Sense Of Loss” incorporates some Angelo Badalamenti-esque horns to augment Anders’ crackling, seasick background sounds. Listeners are left on an unsettling note, wanting to hear his project unfurl. I for one can’t wait to see what Brørby does next.

Cop a digital version of “Mulholland Drive, 1984″ here, and scope the usual suspects for a analog version to pop up."


" I mean of course the first thing you’re going to think of is David Lynch. His masterful mind-scrambler Mulholland Drive launched (probably) a thousand cinematically inclined nightmarish dark ambient records. Lynch himself dabbles in music, and it sounds as otherworldly as you would expect. If there’s one thing you can pin on a David Lynch film is that it’s going to be saturated in mood. Where does the story go, where does it take us? Doesn’t matter. Serve the mood.

Norwegian artist Anders Brørby is a student of the mood. He’s a slatherer of synths, a maestro of mise en scène, taking cues not only from Lynch but also from Argento, Wenders, and Pasolini. He crafts atmospheric homages to place, and you can’t help but be enveloped by them. In musical circles he’s clearly influenced by (*promo copy check*) Fennesz, Tim Hecker, and William Basinski, as his compositions crackle, hiss, and pulse with tactile sonics. He succeeds by removing you as a listener from your surroundings and creating an entire new, weird world in which to place you. It just so happens that the new world is actually one that has already existed, a repurposed moonlit night among the Hollywood Hills.

Mulholland Drive, 1984 is steeped in magic and mystery, as is likely obvious from the descriptive text you’ve already written. But it’s impossible for me to do it justice – the amount of words I would have to type to remotely connect to the album’s dense aura would fill a novel, and if I were writing novels, I wouldn’t be slaving over music. But hey, I like slaving over music, so we’re all in the same boat – it’s not a yacht or anything, but it’ll do. People like Anders Brørby make the review game worthwhile. And back to his tape, unpacking each track is an overwhelmingly enjoyable task, one that’s as satisfactory at minute one as it is at minute fifty.

Is Mulholland Drive, 1984 an homage, then, to Lynch’s film? Not directly, but certainly in spirit. It could easily serve as an alternate soundtrack to the surreal creepings that the film is famous for. And it doesn’t stay in one place, either, as horns are introduced in “A Sudden Sense of Loss” and otherworldly waveforms flit through “Deconstruction of Mirages.” Like Lynch, Brørby manages to surprise, injecting the unexpected into his work as it progresses. It’s the mark of an artist in complete control of his medium."

--Ryan Masteller


"2016 was a prolific year for Anders Brørby, who began the year with Nihil (one of our Top Ten Drone Albums of 2016), followed it up with a split release on Land Animal Tapes, and topped off the year with this pair of releases on Hyle Tapes and Fort Evil Fruit. The latter contains a surprising sonic shift that suggests a new direction for 2017.

Fans of David Lynch will be enamored with Mulholland Drive, 1984, as the mood and menace translate intact. More than an homage to that famed film (released in 2001), the tape honors the cinematic surreal in all its forms, melding the title to Orwell’s novel and the sound to everything from Kreng to John Carpenter. Within only seconds, clouds of drone enter like black dogs, chased by sheets of precipitation and creak. Traffic races through the puddles, strange creatures bark warnings, and the sun never breaks through. The listening experience is unnerving and yet oddly familiar, like hints of a recovered traumatic memory.

The album grows more dramatic as it progresses, with only one misstep; the singing on “Defeat”. (Yes, we do remember the singing in Mulholland Drive.) The voice breaks the mood, and afterwards, it takes a while to recover for the album to recover. But this distraction can be overlooked, as the remainder of the set stays strong and sinister, veering from haunted ballroom (“The Unhappiest Places on Earth”) to black and white noir (“A Sudden Sense of Loss”). Even on the last track, the rain continues to fall.

Now keep the mood and the menace, but forget everything else you think you know about Brørby’s sound. Phoenix Down is a full left turn, through the barrier and down the rocks. On this tape, Brørby shifts from the cinematic gothic to the factory industrial, adding all manner of surprising beats, taking in influences as disparate as IDM and nu skool breaks. The first beat is the most surprising, of course, but after that the artist continues to investigate new territories, operating with the same sonic curiosity as Roly Porter and the Shape Worship crew. Fort Evil Music calls it “rave music for people who don’t go out,” but we must disagree; this would make incredible club music, albeit not in a mainstream setting. The percussive “Perfume Breath” is only the first taste. “Stab Path Meta Girls” bleeds old school industrial, replete with clanks, repetitive structures and feminine sighs. “Murder” turns wonky midway with the words “archangels and antichrists,” toppling into a sci-fi nightmare. But the most ferocious piece makes no play for adoration; “Bloodsport” is three minutes of bludgeoning beats and buried yelps, receding into abrasive interplay. Front 242 would be proud.

The cover is particularly alluring, suggesting hands about to clap (but unable to do so, having been amputated); raised in plea or euphoria. And behind them, something threatening and red: a spool, a totem, a broken bandage? Once again, Brørby (who painted the image) celebrates the surreal. We’re excited to see where he will head next, down the red brick road to unknown palaces and kings. (Richard Allen)"


"2016 a été pour le norvégien Anders Brørby une année de frénésie créative, dont j’aurai surtout retenu le Nihil paru chez les positivables Gizeh Records, album de forts contrastes tant sonores qu’émotionnels. Et si cette sortie vous a plu, vous serez comme moi assez heureux de profiter de Mulholland Drive, 1984, qui semble s’inscrire dans les mêmes référentiels acoustiques et cinématographiques, sans pour autant tomber dans la redite facile (faut pas déconner). Il s’agirait plutôt d’un bilan à court terme des séquelles laissées par Nihil, et de sa route cathartique aboutissant à une auto-destruction synonyme de renaissance ; que trouve-t-on après l’effondrement de sa propre existence ?

e ne vous ferai pas l’affront de vous expliquer l’origine du titre de cet album, dont on sent les influences lynchiennes dans chacun de ses interstices irréguliers. Dans sa narration, Nihil était d’ailleurs probablement déjà influencé par le réalisateur (et pas que, comme on en a déjà causé avec Factory Photographs il y a peu de temps) et son univers sombre et surréaliste, et il n’est pas étonnant de dégager dans sa suite spirituelle les mêmes traits. Cependant, là où les compositions étaient incisives et très frontales en mars, elles semblent dans Mulholland Drive, 1984 plus volatiles et éphémères, comme si elles ne réussissaient pas à s’accrocher à quelque relief pour s’y planter et recommencer un énième cycle au goût martial formé par ces deux albums. Les dix mouvements évoluent ici dans un lieu à pression négative, où les résurgences d’un monde différent et pourtant familier surgissent brièvement et chaotiquement à travers un épais brouillard primordial ; les immenses parois de métal liquide qui enveloppent ce lieu oscillent lentement en réponse aux drones épars que l’on croisera sur notre route, et on flottera en état de semi-conscience en leur centre habité par un embryon de monde totipotent, qui attend seulement qu’on lui dise quel chemin emprunter pour se différencier.

Et c’est dans cette mise en scène abstraite et ralentie que l’esprit voguera, que les sens anesthésiés tenteront possiblement d’imprégner le paysage vierge qui leur est offert du romantisme noir transpirant des morceaux, particulièrement palpable lorsqu’une trompette ou un saxophone vaporeux s’inviteront dans un A Sudden Sense of Loss ou autre Handheld Weapon, aux furieux airs de dernier slow avant sa propre extinction dans une nuit pluvieuse. Les quatre premières pistes se poseront là comme des monolithes aux lentes respirations réverbérées dans les abysses, imposant à l’ensemble une esthétique en teintes de gris et au grain marqué qui se nourrit de réminiscences puisées dans la précédente itération déchue de notre univers. Une tension éthérée infiltre les moindres fractures provoquées par les glitches, et nous projettera sans forcer dans la solitude d’un bord de route à fréquentation variable, à peine dérangée par des échos distants de mélodies et de synthèse granulaire. Déjà-vus industriels et post-post-apo entrent en collision avec des fragments aléatoires de temps et d’espace dans des pièces au design sonore toujours impeccable, et permettront même momentanément de dégager assez de poussière de nos yeux pour deviner la lumière dans Persuasion of Existence, ou le singulier Defeat et son duo voix / vibraphone aux airs de phare d’espérance inattendu dans un disque sévèrement incliné vers le dark ambient.

Dans Mulholland Drive, 1984, Anders Brørby semble exprimer un certain déterminisme existentiel mais ne s’abandonne jamais à la fatalité, il entretient une inclinaison certaine à la nostalgie tout en pensant aux avenirs possibles, il aime la noirceur et n’oublie pas qu’elle n’a aucune valeur sans son antagoniste. Il rejoint éventuellement en filigranes le propos de Nihil, dans une version alternative plus floue et libre d’interprétation, sans en perdre l’essentiel : la dualité de l’existence survit invariablement à sa propre extinction, et parcourir une nouvelle route équivaudra toujours à s’écarter légèrement du précédent chemin que l’on a tracé sur un anneau de Möbius.

Y a du digital haut-de-gamme, mais les rares courageux pourront aussi profiter du format-dont-on-ne-doit-pas-prononcer-le-nom ici, sur le Bandcamp du label français Hylé Tapes, qui héberge cette sortie.



[LP] Anders Brørby – Mulholland Drive, 1984
Par Etienne Poiarez le 7 décembre 2016 dans Chroniques

Prophète des paysages sonores abstraits et de l’obscurité ambiante, l’artiste-plasticien Anders Brørby dévoile un nouvel album en forme de bande-sonore sans concession, fusionnant aux images de films imaginaire et sous-tensions.

Avec ses disques précédents, les biens-nommés « Nihil » et « Music For Imaginary Scenarios », le compositeur d’Oslo tissait déjà des liens entre les disciplines. Dans sa pratique de l’art brut, il chante à travers ses machines des chapelles musicales atmosphériques, à base de synthétiseurs granulaires, de field-recording traités, de boucles et de micro-variations. Et si la référence au film « Mulholland Drive » du célèbre David Lynch semble évidente, nous croiserons aussi des références dans certains titres à son inoubliable série « Twin Peaks » comme à d’autres cinéastes, Dario Argento en tête.

S’il est difficile d’aborder l’œuvre morceau par morceau, tant l’osmose de l’univers est totale, on notera l’excellente « Black Room » qui fait muter de l’ambient ténébreuse en odyssée minérale, laissant ainsi s’écouler dans l’espace des effluves anxiogènes et naturalistes. Nous planons dans une étrange mélasse sonore à la fois aérienne et tétanisante sur « The Unhappiest Places Of Earth ». Nous captons même un semblant de lumière avec l’épurée « Defeat » et son chant mélancolique et haut-perchée, traversant des nappes triturées de glitchs. L’harmonie est complète lorsque retentissent les claviers de « Deconstruction of Mirages » et les machines vrombissantes de sa suite, « Handheld Weapon ».

« Mulholland Drive, 1984 » invoque des images allant de l’étrange douceur à l’apocalypse, des visions antinomiques et fortes qu’il est difficile de s’imaginer. Une musique qui s’adresse directement à l’esprit, à ses sens et son imagination. Chose intéressante, l’artiste évite de s’enfermer dans le bruit et la fureur malgré son accoutumance au drone. Il nous donne à entendre et ressentir des espaces très aériens, à l’inverse d’autres artistes creusant les décors abstraits et criards sans aucune circonspection. L’ambient se travaille sur le relief et sillonne sur les chemins de l’éternel Mulholland Drive, route aux milles visages qui continue de nourrir les fantasmes et les imaginaires des créateurs.


ANDERS BRØRBY – Mulholland Drive, 1984
(Hylé Tapes, 2016)

Il lato più cupo e visionario della multiforme personalità artistica di Anders Brørby torna a manifestarsi sotto forma delle dieci tracce di “Mulholland Drive, 1984”. Seguendo una sostanziale linea di continuità con il recente “Nihil”, l’artista norvegese prosegue la sua esplorazione di claustrofobici recessi fisici e spirituali partendo nuovamente da una massiccia materia sonora costituita da field recordings e strati sonori pesantemente processati, ai quali nell’occasione sono associati loop sintetici e improvvisazioni digitali .

L’approccio del lavoro presenta coltri di rumore lasciate libere di dipanarsi secondo moti quasi post-industriali (nella title track) ovvero modulate in drone maestosi (“Persuasion Of Existence”). La chiave di volta di “Mulholland Drive, 1984” è nel brano che ne raggiunge la metà, “Defeat”, le cui allucinate declamazioni vocali si diluiscono improvvisamente in gentili stille elettro-acustiche; da qui in poi, ad eccezione di un torbido ritorno distorto finale, l’ambience di Brørby svapora in una teoria di risonanze emozionali (“Room With A Different View”, “The Unhappiest Places On Earth”) decisamente più eteree rispetto alla prima parte del lavoro.

È il suggello di un’ulteriore ambivalenza nell’espressione di Brørby, non più solo obliquo artigiano di canzoni sognanti (come in “Holiday Affairs”, 2015) e sperimentatore dronico ma anche, sotto quest’ultima veste, capace di dispensare elementi di rumore tangibile ed evanescenze ambientali, manifestando in entrambi i casi una spiccata impronta cinematica.



released November 25, 2016



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