Schneider TM is a multidimensional music project from Dirk Dresselhaus, named after his nickname Schneider. Since the late 80's, Dirk has been active in different musical fields. From 1989 until 1997 he played and sang in adventurous rock and pop bands like Hip Young Things and Locust Fudge before he became more active in electronic music around 1996. Schneider TM is responsible for a couple of experimental electro-freak-pop albums and mini-hits like "Reality Check", "Frogtoise" and a cover version of a song by The Smiths called "The Light 3000", a collaboration with Kptmichigan that was hugely acclaimed by John Peel, "The Wire" etc. As well as work on a variety of one-off projects—including the production of music for movies, theatre and radio plays—Dirk has been performing & recording with noise & drone outfits like Angel (w/ Ilpo Väisänen of Pan sonic + guests likeHildur Gudnadottir & Lucio Capece) and Real Time (w/ Reinhold Friedl of Zeitkratzer) on a regular basis since 1999.
For a while now, Dirk has also been moving Schneider TM in the direction of instantly composed freeform music, employing varying instruments including guitar, electronics, balaphon as well as field recordings. Sometimes the work is solo and at other times together with artists like Jochen Arbeit (of Einstürzende Neubauten, Automat), Damo Suzuki (ex-Can), video artist Lillevan or Japanese dancer Tomoko Nakasato. The first result of this open & soundscape-y direction is the Schneider TM album "Construction Sounds". Based on field recordings of Berlin construction sites combined with electronics, it was released in September 2012.
On his latest offering, part two of the "Sounds" series, he explores the full potential of the electric guitar and an array of effects. Dresselhaus is no stranger to the instrument, it is fair to say. He played guitar in the 1990s for several experimental indie combos and has made liberal, idiosyncratic use of the instrument over the past couple of decades as Schneider TM in electronic music, film, radio plays and various other sound projects.
Technical perfection is not paramount on "Guitar Sounds". The focus is on spontaneity, improvisation—if the result is flawed in the classic sense of the word, this concerns him not one iota. Dresselhaus is interested in atmosphere, in the intensity and magic of the initial moment when decisions are made and played without knowing which direction they will take or where they might end—music without a safety net, so to speak.
Unleashed, the guitar sound takes on its own lease of life, in the spirit of generative music. At the decisive moment, Dresselhaus reins it back, like a dog owner tugging on the lead, thereby creating an energy field between tension and relief, harmony and disharmony, control and loss of control, construction and deconstruction, positivity and negativity, sobriety and humour. Or to use a more striking image: surf sound dualism.
All tracks are improvised ("Instant Composition"), none composed in advance. Some pieces were inspired by films or were improvised to film (e.g. "Teilhard" by Christoph Ischinger). The basic "Überzahl" track and elements of "Landslide" were used in Carsten Ludwig's film "In der Überzahl" and completed with overdubs for this album.
The equipment list runs as follows: various electric guitars and bass guitars, lap steel guitar, travel guitar, line amplifiers and combo tube amplifiers, reverbs, echoes, delays, looper pedals, octave effect boxes, pitch shifters, isolation cabinets, filters, cello bows and bottlenecks.