Eindhoven’s rave veteran Albert van Abbe has been involved in many different musical and audio-visual projects for almost 2 decades.
It doesn't happen often, but sometimes you catch the eyes of a man as you pass him by in the street and you instantly get a feeling that this is not someone to mess with. It has nothing to do with aggression or malice – in fact, it's never the loud, cocky guys with the attitude and the practiced “cool” walk and talk. No, it's the calm, steady gaze of someone who has seen and experienced things and learned from them. Indeed, it does not happen often, but it's even more unusual to get that same feeling conveyed to you through art, literature or music. Albert van Abbe is that unusual.
Albert van Abbe started making music and performing live in 2001 but when listening to his work, there are certain elements that rather makes you think of 1901. Melancholic whispers of Stravinsky, Ravel or Schönberg, reduced and concentrated to rhythmical and melodic patterns, sometimes breaking free of the constraints set by arpeggiators or sequencers. Perhaps this otherly, nonconformist way of thinking and doing music is most evident in van Abbe's live performances, and he is in fact one of the very few Dutch techno live acts having performed Berghain, Awakenings & ADE just to name a few.
But there's something else that sets him apart from the vast majority of his contemporary techno colleagues, something that's harder to pin down. There's so much electronic music these days that is either intentionally underproduced; grimy, harsh and simplistic, or overproduced; tumescent, hyper-compressed and dense. Albert van Abbe's music is distinctively neither. There is always air in his productions; infinite skies, passing clouds, thin vapour rising from open fields... visions of mountain tops or endless tree crowns half covered in mist. There is always place for you within his music to fill your lungs to the brim with this cleansing air. A feeling of unrestrained, reflecting Albert van Abbe's own recalcitrant and anti-authoritative personality. To put it simple: It's music with a view.
Besides performing, producing music and DJing, Albert van Abbe also currently operates two record labels, No Comment and VANABBE. He has also released music on FIGURE Jams, Semantica, Echcord Colour, Uncanny Valley's Shtum, Deep Sound Channel and Trolldans.
Selected discography Albert van Abbe