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V/A – I, Mute Hummings

V/A - I, Mute Hummings

CD, Ex Ovo, 2006

One has to have a lot of guts to start a new label in an era where illegal digitalisation and distribution of audio material is a daily internet activity of youngsters. But it has to be said that Mirko Uhlig (Aalfang mit Pferdkopf) and Tobias Fischer (Tokafi magazin) did the right thing when they decided to start the Ex Ovo label in the early days of 2006. Their main goal is to be occupied with sounds and emotions or maybe even better – as the subtitle of the first CD states so eloquently – to create “a collection of drone music and dulcet atmospheres”.
Nine tracks in almost 80 minutes is the result of their first output “I, mute hummings”. These are indeed atmospheres, like for example in “The Crossing” by Keith Berry, as well as loop-based drones (Dronaement’s “Phonorecord III”). Other gorgeous tracks on this album are from Column One who present a soundscape with minimal metal- scrapings and sounds which are literally on the edge of creating feedback-loops. The masters of drones, Troum (counting amongst them the owner of Drone Records), are present with “Thrausmata Enos Eneirou” which creates a dreamy atmosphere for almost a quarter of an hour.
But this is not all there is, because there is more… So much more. Jeffrey Roden’s “The Seeds Of Happyness” is a great piece solely made from sounds created with a bass guitar. Also, Steve Jolliffe, who has been a member of the legendary Tangerine Dream, plays flute which after recording was manipulated by label-owner Mirko Uhlig. The result received the name “One More Haggard Drowned Man (Redundant Minimal Development Mix By Mirko Uhlig)” and it must be said that even though it is not the easiest music to listen to, or to dream away to, the result is epic.
On the Ex Ovo website, Mirko and Tobias invite artists to send their demo to them with these words: “We don’t care if you’re well- known artists with hundreds of albums out or someone before his great debut – only music counts here”. This statement is what this compilation CD depicts very well. Only music.


— Bauke van der Wal

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