Robert Lippok: redsuperstructure (Raster-Noton)
Robert Lippok is best known as one of the core members of electronic trio To Rococo Rot. It’s been some time since TRR has made waves in terms of press and flirting with more mainstream coverage; it’s hard to believe that at the peak of their star rising they produced an entire Saint Etienne album. Lippok focuses on more purely electronic and experimental forms in his solo work. redsuperstructure is his first proper full-length album under his proper name, and his first proper solo material since the Robot EP from 2006. It’s been ten years since his last Raster-Noton work, the all-too-brief Open Close Open EP in 2001. redsuperstructure is perhaps only just barely a full album, though, clocking in under 40 minutes in duration. But as with most Raster releases, it’s about quality and not quantity, and these tracks don’t disappoint. Some of the tunes recall the syncopated repetition and minimalism of To Rococo Rot, with the same accessibility (which can sometimes verge on blandness, but thankfully rarely actually crosses over), such as the quantized groove of “nycycle,” but usually Lippok allows himself to be a bit more understated and/or severe. Occasionally he delves headlong into tiny minimalism like “bouncingform” or the textural opener “unfold,” but those more sparse moments are a stark contrast to something as active and energetic as the distorted Raster groove of “sugarcubes,” whose angular groove personifies some of the sweet geometry suggested by the title. It both tucks in neatly in the Raster-Noton catalogue and represents Lippok’s capabilities as a sound artist in a nicely versatile way, combining his knack for rhythm and noise and monochromatic repetition with something occasionally punchy and vibrant, capturing the best of these worlds.