CAT No.: NO8
Release Date: 28.05.2021
Master: Adrian von Ripka
2. Sitaki Kuongea Mob
4. Traffic Jazz
CITYSYNTHESIS is a project by DJ Raph and Sophia Bauer, exploring real and imagined soundscapes of the city they have in common, Nairobi.
DJ Raph is an electronic music producer/DJ. An old head in the city’s underground scene, he is constantly testing the boundaries of what’s acceptable on the dancefloor or in a mix. Sophia Bauer is a sound artist based in Cologne. She often creates installations with extensive, imaginative soundscapes exploring places and ideas wondering if sound can be a source of knowledge in and of itself.
Their archive project soundofnairobi.net won the Sound of the Year Award 2020 in the category Sound Innovator.
CITYSYNTHESIS is an exploration into the sonic heart of the city of Nairobi, by DJ Raph (Nairobi) and Sophia Bauer (Cologne/Nairobi). The eponymous EP is forged out of material from their archive project, soundofnairobi.net, and nothing else. The four tracks emerge from the soundscapes of a restless city, progressing, mutating, through unmapped harmonies and dissonances, scattered percussions and broken rhythms, sometimes concrete and poetry. Unfiltered utterances and other sonic exclamations disrupt further, at once building and dismantling narrative.
From his meddlings with beats and (sort of) dance music, DJ Raph applies his trademark sampling and mangling, cutting up and (dis)arranging Nairobi’s soundscapes into asymmetrical collages. Sophia Bauer brings a process from her experience with sound art, in this case using pitch tracking to transform raw field recordings into synthesizer textures that feel alien yet familiar. The two approaches morph into a surreal testimony of a place, a time, a people; a sonic synthesis of reality and imagination.