There are many theories about the origins of music. One theory maintains that the first song was a lullaby for children; another, that men created music in order to please women. Hendrik Weber a.k.a. Pantha du Prince does not worry about such genealogies. For him music was always there, predating humans. On his new album, Black Noise, the Berlin/Paris based producer and DJ, claims ‘music slumbers in all matter,’ ‘any sound, even silence, is already music’. The mission, then, must be to render audible what is unheard: black noise.
Some tracks on Pantha du Prince’s third album-the first to be released on Rough Trade-are based on field recordings and improvisations produced in collaboration with Joachim Sch tz (Arnold Dreyblatt Trio) and Stephan Abry (Workshop) in the Swiss Alps. It turned out that the house in which they lived while staying there stood next to a pile of debris formed by a landslide that had buried an entire village. The music on Black Noise balances precariously on the slippery threshold between art and nature, between techno and folklore. The album features collaborations with Noah Lennox a.k.a. Animal Collective’s Panda Bear and Tyler Pope of !!! and LCD Soundsystem.
Weber’s introverted brand of tripping techno is influenced by Brit pop, shoegaze, noisepop, Krautrock and deep techno. He shapes a novel kind of club music that is probably best described by the term “sonic house.” Pantha du Prince is still a Romantic Conceptualist, the message we hear him murmuring: beauty is possible even after the disaster; where there was debris and noise, there shall be great art.