Novaya Zemlya

Thomas Koner

From the many sub genres, interpretations & reflections of Ambient music, Thomas Köner is one of the most respected composers in the field of drone, experimental & soundscape ambience.

As a second violinist in a youth orchestra at the age of eight, Köner was immersed in music from a young age. Later playing piano & attending composition classes, Köner was offered a job in a studio that specialised in sound post production. From there, Köner’s career has spanned over two decades with highly acclaimed work in the field of music & the multimedia arts.

“When I’m composing, I don’t use the computer in the way I would in a concert. I do have a lot of instruments in my studio that I play and record and somehow arrange. All the inspiration for how the sound develops is something in the sonic quality of each event which is just extended in a way that becomes a commentary of the sounds that I play in the first place. For this piece, there are analogies to the situation in Novaya Zemlya and Arctic places: the military zone, the destruction… There are several versions of the piece, and the one that became the official one was maybe number five or six. I kept removing bits until it could not be perceivable as a musical flow. It became a sort of vast emptiness.”*

“From the start of “Novaya Zemlya 1” comes a peculiar plosive, an ultra-low frequency of ominous portent detonation of the deleterious Tsar Bomba, from whose audio-modeled aftermath toxic trickles seep throughout…Overall, what prevails is the strange affectivity Köner’s seemingly colourless tracts induce—their depth of field as against the disengaged ambiguity of Enovian Ambient’s play of surface.”**

Likened to a writer, Köner’s composition of pieces leave the listener with a concept planted, yet an unsolved resolution remains. Novaya Zemla literally means “new land” and is the name of a cluster of remote islands in the Arctic Ocean in the north of Russia. Köner’s narrative takes the listener to that desolate, cold & fragile place, questioning the depths & creating space within one’s mind.

* Thomas Koner – The Quietus Interview
** Novaya Zemlya Review by Igloo Magazine

Buy Novaya Zemlya HERE

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