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714 substanz t . tripped experiences . cd . february 2k1.



really good
le contact de ta voix
was it good
hypnotized by bee


after several years of silence, the sound perfectionists substanz t from frankfurt finally present their 3rd album. with this release they move one step forward into an stereophonic universe of smoth break beats and trip hop, covered with urban ambient soundscapes and hypnotising melodies. tripped experience is a soul inflected unreal landscape of slow-motion cyber vibrations - leaded, disrupted and broken with stirring basslines & breaks. the journey continues on with rhythmic trance themes adding touches of and drum'n'bass elements that dirge forward with immense dark demand of detail. those details - dreamed voices, slow glacier melodies - low drones flows in a beautiful manner. a collection of awesome dreamscapes perfumed by the shadowplay of dance polyrythms, warm synthesizer pulses, and spoken, sung and atmospherically implied snapshots of life in the global urban jungle. every tune is very carefully created and integrate itself very well in an orchestra of percussions and slow analog progressions and additionally enriched by the vocals of christophe demarthe, astrid köpfler, mc ronin, iris orasjärvi. gentle floating electronic structures. you knew substanz t - you never know...


black ausgabe 23 - frühjahr 2001

endlich sind substanz-t dort gelandet, wo sie auch hingehören: bei hymen! und neues label, neuer sound könnte man sagen, obwohl die änderungen sich auch auf den albumtitel beziehen können, denn substanz-t setzten bei ‚tripped experiences' diesmal mehr auf rhythmus und beats als je zuvor. trip hop, break beats, drum'n'bass und score-sounds verschmelzen hier zu einem unaufdringlich-melodischen fluß, dem man sich nur unschwer entziehen kann. der sonst den sound von substanz-t so prägende trance-effekt entsteht hier meist durch den hypnotischen rhythmuslauf in kombination mit atmosphärischen flächensounds, welche diesmal aber völlig frei von mystischen einflüssen sind, wie noch zu apocalyptic vision-zeiten! auch durch den vermehrten einsatz von vocals (u.a. claire obscure) kommt ein gewisser popappeal auf und macht ‚tripped experiences' zu dem vielleicht eingängigsten album auf hymen. (m.f.)

blackharvest 4.0

frankfurt's very own substanz-t return with this, their third album. their own brand of ambience, trip-hop and a barrage of breakbeats really appeal to my pallet. with a gentle and relaxing approach, hypnotic electronic structures slide you down a black vortex of atmospheres and vibrations. an effective solid release which you can really chill out to. some of the structures kind of grab me in an 'autechre' way. not exactly the pinnacle of this type of music, but somewhere on a journey to the top. (tony)

prospective 1/2001

dreaming, floating landscapes with an impressive variation. cool backbeat rhythms with chilling and varied technology. all the 10 tracks have the most fantastic way to be different, but on the same time they don't separate too much from the red line the band have. a damn strong album. (9/10) (atle marcussen)

side-line no.35 april-may-june 2001

3 long years passed by until substanz-t would return with their third album. today, our favourite german perfectionists open up their brains and share their 'tripped experiences' with us, their privileged audience. all we can say with such a grandiose release is that substanz-t once again take their music to a higher level. evoking this time towards more trip-hop / drum'n'bass sonic realms, the german project remind us how unpredictable they can be. and they also demonstrate their astounding production competence through lush sound arrangements, challenging tonalities, mixtures and futuristic ambient bleeps. the dense atmosphere of the new tracks is also reinforced by the use of vocal parts haunting their song structures. the most efficient intrusion is probably the smothered french vocal parts by christophe demarthe (co2) especially on 'nexus' and 'le contact de ta voix'. 'tripped experiences' is a multifaceted album; it sounds new, experimental, progressive and modern, all at the same time. it's intriguing and relaxing and guarantees you a trance-like and filmic home-listening experience. simply excellent. (tsf)

the new empire

celebrate the holy act of pressing the play-key. the music of this project was from frankfurt always was very surprising and interesting, no category could be found to judge about their sounds and with this new album they show us again how janus-headed this project is regarding their music. "tripped experiences" is a good choice of a title, because the sensitive mixture of trip hop, drum 'n' bass, big beats and trance is a musical trip, an acoustical inducted drug-experience. the album begins with "nexus", a track that gives you a direction for the whole album. the slow rhythm with the druggy soundscapes and a powerful bass are the background for french spoken words - better to say whispered words - by christophe demarthe. the dense atmosphere of this track is well created by floating sound-patterns and subliminal melodies. track number two is called "really good" and is also really good. with over 10 minutes duration it turns out to be a very long track but the time is needed to develop a psycho-acoustic tension over the whole track. boredom does not reign here and even the many loops and the very slow rhythm are done well enough to make it an interesting piece of music. those who felt asleep during song two will wake up with the next track coming. the break beats and the drum'n'bass elements make it one oft the louder tracks on the album. it goes straight forward and offers some excellent heights. my favorite song comes next: "new-u" is a slow breakbeat-track with offensive trance-elements, spherical voice-fragments and very fragile sound layers that spread like a fog across the whole rhythm-construct. the track is even danceable but i would prefer to listen to it alone in the dark. it can rise pictures inside your head when you shut your eyes. the drum&bass-fans amongst us will love "was it god with mc ronin". the song features a mc, yeah. spoken, fast-rapped vocals by mc ronin over a confusing d&b-track full of breaks and surprising hooks together with frightening atmospheric elements and loud screams. an intense, excellent track. "unique" has a ritualistic character with the loops mangled together. a very slow rhythm carries this track and dark sound layers create a threatening atmosphere together with whispered vocals. the whole track is like a slow drive through a tunnel, a frequency of lights that come closer, disappear and come closer again, mixed in fear of being left alone in the dark. the next track has a funny title: "hypnotized by bee" and continues at the point where "unique" has left you. it is also very atmospheric, some very quiet drums and an ultra-slow piano are the main-elements and again some whispered french vocals. somehow this reminds me of the great phallus dei with a very modern approach. after almost two thirds of this drifting song a difficult break builds the prelude for some more offensive beats that lead the song to it's melancholic end. after this tracks "solution" offers in parts some refreshing drum&bass-attacks but it is not really an outburst of energy: ambient-parts are mixed in and the rhythm plays together with the heavy sound-walls and artificial choirs. "black with co2" begins really black with enormous basses. my flour is vibrating and i love my subwoover more than ever. the bass is dominating here and creates a stage for the narrative french vocals. only some cymbals and a snare are added to the minimal rhythm-section and the silent, often repeated piano-loop is also not strong enough to force back the hammering bass. a very good track and really dark with an excellent end. "unite" seems to be some kind of medley from the album, because it unifies all the elements of the tracks before: break beats, soft sound-carpets, ritualistic but not annoying loops and a lot of weird vibrations. "tripped experiences" is definitely not a loud album. it live from it's great atmospheric moments and the many surprising breaks. it is an album for a warm summer night, cruising in a convertible, a cold winter night lying in a warm bed, a smoky drug-party or simply a relaxing bath. the more often you listen to it the more details you will discover and i am sure tripped experiences will alternate your mind like a drug. (toxin)

recycle your ears

it's finally here! after four years of waiting and a couple of vinyl releases, here comes the second album of substanz t., this time on hymen, which has never sounded more different from his father label ant zen. but "tripped experiences" is also a surprise compared to the rest of the substanz t discography. just listen to the very beginning of "nexus": it all starts with a jazzy, almost accoustic sound and a broken rhythm loop, on which appears very quick the voice of the christophe demarthe (clair obscur / co2). so much for all of you who expected another trancey cd with a. crowley samples. anyway, once you get used to it, the female choir in the second half of this track, as well as the small, more flowing sounds at the beginning of "really good" remind of the origins of substanz t: a soft, gentle kind of techno with an emotional side, void of heavy beats and rather full of small details and changes. then, "le contact de ta voix" mixes some of these elements, the french vocals (christophe sings on half the tracks of this cd), and a somewhat more jazzy feeling. at this point, one could be reminded of some parts of xingu hill's "alterity" by the warm sounds and "full" arrangement. but substanz t's music is still more structured like techno tracks. and the whole album plays with this two aspects, alternating between the more flowing tracks ("new-u") and those more oriented toward the vocals and this lounge / jazzy atmosphere ("black" or the rapped "was it god"). all in all, this is isn't as accessible as what this duo has released before. a bit softer, maybe, this album is however less straightforward and has fewer trance moments. one needs several careful listenings to get a general idea of where substanz t is going with this cd: a sort of clear, echoed and soft electronic music that takes its root in both techno and industrial to end up and adds to it interesting, warm vocals. one could say the band reached quite well this objective, but lost also a part of the catchiness and the flow that had made its appeal. anyway, one last thing to say about "tripped experiences" is that this sounds a lot like an album in which a lot of time and efforts have been invested. this has a lot of diversity (for example just in the fact that 4 different vocalists are implicated) and should satisfy people who like to listen to the same disc over and over for a long time. in fact, i think that the biggest surprise will be for people who expected a new "sirius b kontakt" or a new "intersolar". but this is still a cd of deep and interesting electronic music. (nicolas)


auf die frage nach einem weg, den zu gehen sich lohnt, sollte immer eine antwort gegeben werden können, die die maßgabe eines soundtracks zur rhythmischen unterstützung eines jeden schrittes beinhaltet. sollte es sich um ein freiwilliges taumeln oder um die leichten bewegungen einer schamanistischen wegfindung handeln, seien die "tripped experiences" von substance-t aus frankfurt empfohlen. mit einem abstrakten einfühlungsvermögen, das dem leicht verklärten blick eines sich seines zustandes vollkommen bewusst entrückten zeitgängers gleicht, entwickeln sich hier die wegweiser durch räumlich und zeitlich undefinierte gravitationen. man bewegt sich auf unbekanntem und doch tanzbarem terrain, schwingt sich in divers verrutschte coexistenzen und verweilt im zustand befriedigter einstweiligkeit. die gesänge, derer sich substance-t bedient, bebildern diese klaren gradwanderungen mit diffusen geschichtsmomenten zu einer einheit aus mellow und trip, break und ambienz und verfügt den wanderer als teil allen seins zum selbst ernannten führer durch ein eigenartiges universum. drum sei beflissen und wäge ab, welchen weg du, wanderer, zu gehen vermagst, bevor du dich in den windungen deiner selbst verrennst und vergiss nicht zu tanzen, dich zu drehen, einfach weiter und immer fort... und dann bist du da.

3sat kulturzeit

substanz-t? science-fiction leser wissen mehr und erinnern sich an das buch von philip k. dick: "do androids dream of electric sheep", auch unter dem filmtitel "blade runner" bekannt. im buch ist substanz-t eine droge, die die kommunikation der beiden hirnhälften unterbindet und bei übermäßigem konsum süchtig macht. soviel zu vorbildern aus der literatur und deren übertragung auf die musik. was die musik anbelangt, ist substanz-t ein frankfurter duo, über das mehr mythen als platten im umlauf sind. nach einer langen kreativpause sind alexander lange und arne stevens nun wieder zurück. ihre geschichte liest sich in etwa so: am anfang war der einfallsreichtum. substanz-t hatten die idee, den frankfurter underground mit ihren spontan-events in tiefgaragen, auf baustellen, in unterführungen aufzumischen. eine art musikperformance, die die herkömmliche musiker-zuschauer-beziehung auflösen und in andere kontexte stellen sollte. wer damals schon mühe hatte, das erlebte in eine schublade zu stecken, dem geht es heute auch nicht besser, denn das nachfolgeprojekt von alexander lange und arne stevens lässt sich noch weniger einordnen. vom industrial ausgehend, sind substanz-t über ambient und trance mittlerweile im reich der gebrochenen beats angekommen. nach ihrem zweiten album "intersolar" von 1997 standen erst mal wieder eine reihe von konzerten auf dem programm, um neu programmierte loops, beats und sounds direkt zu testen. das ergebnis dieser selbstversuche mit publikum heißt "tripped experiences" und ist jetzt erschienen. meditativ-melancholische beats, kaum ein loop ohne die übliche verzerrung - und natürlich auch die altbekannten schrägen bis düsteren sounds. mit von der partie sind mc ronin (vocals) und der französische industrial-star christophe demarthe von clair obscur.


the name of the band, the look and the name of the album should give us an idea of what this music will be like. tripped experiences is light funky sounding drum n' bass inspired music that metaphorically aches for drugs. comparisons between substanz-t and haujobb's solutions for a small planet have been made, and i can kind of see where those people are coming from.. but, in theory, we all hate the idea of comparing one band to another, or a mix of several bands, and so should most likely avoid any such comparisons. having said that, i'm not going to be a hypocritical ass and say that to me, at least, substanz-t sounds sort of like a cross between haujobb's solutions for a small planet and wave workers foundation's in the whirlpool. generally i like the album. its easy laid back nature makes it suitable to put on when you have anyone over to your house and you're all smoking drugs. often, some of my music is a bit intense, weird, creepy, dark, etc. for some people. its always good to find something i enjoy that others will too. its main fault in such a situation, however, would be that silence would overcome the room, as its not the sort of music to instill energy into the stoned. was it god w/ mc ronin (track 5) is painful, however. right smack dab in the middle of the cd, the mood changes, and mc ronin's vocal stylin' gets all in my face and i press the track advance button. ok. everything fine now. unnecessary and wrong, i wish that track didn't exist. and either next time i will overlook putting this cd on because of that, or instantly skip up to track 6, which is really unfortunate, as tracks 1 through 4 are really good. (squid)


discography feb 2k1
sirius b kontakt. 12" lp. none records. 1996
intersolar. cd /12"lp. liberation and ecstasy. 1997
the essential trance mixes. 12"ep. liberation and ecstasy. 1997
hypnotizing low vibrating frequencies. disk 2 of electronic lust v.2 compilation. zoomshot. 1999
tripped experiences. cd. hymen. 2001