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The story of Nachtblau began with a demonstration video for a synthesizer plugin (OB-E, an Oberheim 8-Voice emulation by GForce Software), I shot in February 2021. I wrote a new piece for that video and people liked it a lot, so I decided to take it on the album Weltmaschine I was about to finish recording at the time.
I wanted to keep the Oberheim version for a future project and also for the context of the Album, I was looking for a more intimate feel.
As I was recording the piano and Mellotron tracks for the album at the studio of Nils Frahm, I wanted to give it a try and record Nachtblau on the little „Zwicki“ piano, Nils used for a lot of things lately. This is a very small pianette from the 1950s, produced in Denmark. Nils bought this one for cheap and fell in love with its sound (you can hear it on his tune „My Friend, the Forrest“). Now it is a collector’s item and prices are skyrocketing…
I loved the sound of the felt-prepared, brittle but very warm piano and found it very suitable for that particular piece. Like on Frahms tunes, it was recorded in a way that all the mechanical playing noises – usually rather undesired in piano recordings – are really exaggerated and contribute to the magic of the sound. In some parts of the piece you can even hear me breathing.