16/03/2023Veteran Austrian Producer URBS Returns To His Downbeat Roots On Impressionistic New LP

If you were around in the mid-to-late 90s, early 00s and onward and caught a whiff of the downtempo stew brewing on the Austrian underground circuit – spearheaded by the globally acclaimed duo of Kruder & Dorfmeister – then the name URBS [of URBS'n'Chaoz and later URBS & Cutex fame] should ring a bell. Likewise, if 'headz' is a genre you can relate to, you will be as excited as we were to hear that the veteran Austrian producer and musician is back with a brand-new full-length on Compost Records. Furthering his mindful, beat-laden excursions into the realms of hiphop, rap, trip hop, (French) film music and more, URBS returns to his sonic roots,"using obscure samples as well as traditional instrumentation for his impressionistic instrumental [compositions]" to catapult listeners into another dimension entirely, "a secret land of our imagination, where things are not as they seem." 

"Geheimland" is the name of his latest eleven-track venture, a fortuitous byproduct of the pandemic. As URBS details in an interview with Electronic Groove, the record came into existence as he sat locked down in his home studio trying to "get away from the madness of the world outside," while the name was actually inspired by his young son: "The record is called ‘Geheimland’, a word my son invented at the age of three. It’s a place where only he and a few of his friends can go and he often describes the place in the most astonishing monologues. Everything is a little bit different there and I thought it’s a beautiful word and it fits the album perfectly. I hope it’s the kind of music that’s beyond genres, something entirely unique," he describes.

Intertwining multiple styles, both organic and electronic, to create this beguiling mesh of highly evocative cinematic sounds, URBS casts his musical line to drag us down the rabbit hole, a sensation that is at once positively breathtaking and irresistibly headnodic. Leaving things up to our imagination, URBS delivers a fleet of ethereal escape pods, grounded by dope beats and steeped in possibility, limited only by our own ingenuity. We would quite simply describe it as music for minds that like to wander.

See URBS take you on a tour of some of the music that influenced him in the video series below. Fun fact: the gorgeous album cover to "Geheimland" was created by none other than DJ DSL. If you know, you know.

AUTHOR: Lev Nordstrom