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About

MINCO EGGERSMAN, THEODOOR BORGER & MATHIAS EICK

UNIFONY

Minco Eggersman and Theodoor Borger started collaborating under the moniker UNIFONY some years ago. For this project they’re inviting guest musicians to find the pure essence of music with them. Together, they wander off the beaten track and rediscover purity by experimenting. ...

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Contact

Publicist
Ben Michaels
812-339-1195 X 204

Current News

  • 08/07/201810/12/2018

UNIFONY: The Audiophile Spontaneity of Kindred Spirits Turns Fleeting Moments into Sweeping Cinematic Tracks

They would walk into the studio and coax a moment, a sound from the instruments. No through-composed scores, no plans, just the interaction of kindred spirits and vibrating metal and wood, wire and skin.

This is the basic premise of UNIFONY. Improv-based, timbre-inspired, the collaborative project harnesses European indie songwriter and film composer Minco Eggersman and audiophile engineer and musical ingenue Theodoor Borger’s unique chemistry to conjure a soundscape for good, wildly...

Press

News

10/12/2018, Album Release, "UNIFONY", Butler Records
08/07/201810/12/2018, UNIFONY: The Audiophile Spontaneity of Kindred Spirits Turns Fleeting Moments into Sweeping Cinematic Tracks
Release
10/12/2018
Release
10/12/2018
Release Format
Album
Release Type
Digital & Physical
Record Label
Butler Records
Release Title
UNIFONY
This is the basic premise of UNIFONY. Improv-based, timbre-inspired, the collaborative project harnesses European indie songwriter and film composer Minco Eggersman and audiophile engineer and musical ingenue Theodoor Borger’s unique chemistry to conjure a soundscape for good, wildly talented music friends. MORE» More»

They would walk into the studio and coax a moment, a sound from the instruments. No through-composed scores, no plans, just the interaction of kindred spirits and vibrating metal and wood, wire and skin.

This is the basic premise of UNIFONY. Improv-based, timbre-inspired, the collaborative project harnesses European indie songwriter and film composer Minco Eggersman and audiophile engineer and musical ingenue Theodoor Borger’s unique chemistry to conjure a soundscape for good, wildly talented music friends. The first album of the project features the sometimes breathy, sometimes crystalline trumpet of ECM artist Mathias Eick, and the stellar mixing and mastering skills of Phil Brown (Led Zeppelin, Bowie, Talk Talk) and Bob Ludwig (Hendrix, McCartney, Queen, Daft Punk).

“We wanted to challenge ourselves by not thinking it out. We didn’t want to know in advance what instrument, what pedal we would want to hear, but instead wanted to sit with these instruments and really see if we had something to tell people,” explains Eggersman. “It was frightening. I always worked out all the details beforehand and was suddenly completely unprepared. Theodoor is from a musical family but had never made an album as a musician before. He finally wanted to create something himself, express himself as an artist."

The results are lush, enigmatic, touching the imagination and emotions without ever revealing the full story. They are ambient and cinematic, yet ultimately simple at their hearts, drawing inspiration from everything from post-rock like Talk Talk and contemporary classical compositions. Though the tracks are grounded in small moments of inspiration, they achieve well-developed form and bright sheen, thanks to friendship and technical prowess of the project’s contributors.

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Eggersman is a meticulous composer, who went from European indie rock powerhouse, restlessly leading bands and laying down albums, to composer and score creator for arthouse film and Emmy-winning TV. Borger is equally meticulous, an audiophile’s engineer who manages to find the perfect sound no matter where he records, be it in a forest, in an old holding tank in a dry water tower, in an 18th-century church. They decided it was time to leap from their comfort zones, abandoning strict control and firm plans to create a new intimately collaborative project.

Borger set about building a permanent studio, and it proved the perfect setting for this kind of creativity. “Together, we had everything”--a menagerie of instruments, like the old Italian vibraphone and the vintage Bechstein piano that weave their way through the album--“miked and ready to go,” says Eggersman. “Whenever we had an idea, we didn’t have to set things up or waste any time. We could just sit down and play it and record.”

This marriage of spontaneity and precision served them well, as pieces emerged from fragments and fleeting ideas. Some coalesced in a single take. All were inspired by the sound of the instruments themselves, a timbral approach that resonated with both the layered minimalism Eggersman has embraced and Borger’s devotion to sound.

Eggersman, for whom drums are his primary instrument, often dashed into Borger’s studio with a melodic drum pattern in mind, patterns that morphed into tracks like “Hunt” and “Whisper.” Sometimes, Eggersman would step away for a moment, only to return and hear Borger at the studio’s Bechstein grand piano, playing away.

“I remember a few times I would walk back in as Theodoor was playing the piano and ask, ‘What is that?’” recounts Eggersman. “He would say it was nothing, just messing around, but I’d insist it was something special. In 30 minutes, we’d work out a structure. We’ll play around the basic idea we talked through. Then we’d record.” “Rock” opens with one of Borger’s stirring meditations, building as Eggersman jumps in with an elegant 7/8 drum line and Eick’s trumpet soars above.

The music conjures space, suggests experiences and scenes the way all good cinematic music does--yet never forces the listener into one single set of meanings or feelings. “It’s minimal. It has lots of organic and analog elements, and leaves room for listeners to wander off on their own paths,” Eggersman explains. “There’s room for something else, for you and your own thoughts.”

As Borger and Eggersman worked feverishly on the tracks, they longed to hear another voice, to add further dimension and variety. They thought of Eick, the Norwegian jazz player who’s made a name for himself thanks to his work on the ECM label, as the perfect fit. “We knew he would be able to work in this kind of free and open environment,” Eggersman says. “We sent him the tracks, and he recorded his parts in Norway. It was spot on.” After Eick’s contribution, Eggersman was able to convince engineering heavyweights Brown and Ludwig to add final polish to their work. With Brown, they did final mixes at London’s storied Miloco Studios.

In all the technical refinement and complex audio finessing, however, one thing kept shining through: the way the music connected those making it and those hearing it. The nature of the project, its freewheeling and friendly origins, comes through in the recording.

“In that moment of recording, we really connect,” reflects Eggersman. “We might do another take, but we’ve already done the work; half of the song was unknown before we put it on tape. Now it has a form and a feeling. We have no idea where it will go when we press record, but what emerges is something we could never have done alone, and we both fett a kind of renewal. Something beautiful came out of that. It really fulfilled us.”

 

 

Release
10/12/2018