Autotomy is a collaboration between Belgium’s Sleeperhold Publications, Brooklyn-based musician Patricia (Max Ravitz) and the Dutch artist Louis Reith. This output is the result of a long process of contemplation, discussion and elimination which gave us a record that encapsulates both Patricia’s sense for hardware production and dance floor rawness. Describing this release is not a simple task. So we’ll just tell it like it is: it's a record that slows down and, in this process, reveals its mystery. Referencing the title of this release, wunderkind Max Ravitz seems to provide the listener with the possibility of transformation, a way to shed part of your own being.
When running though the tracks, one discovers the essentials of Patricia’s sound architecture: the presence of lightness, of longing, mixed with the ability to deny it in the next instant. Sonically, there’s a careful balance in these productions that belies their fundamental function as body music. It’s ambient yet danceable, approachable despite it’s often deconstructed layout, and ultimately warm and inviting.
The entire record is made using Ravitz collection of hardware, which gives it its uncompromising texture. The presence of kicks, beats and soundscapes does not originate from a clean digital source but from a physical action, an excerpt of movement, a tick of the human hand. It is floating versus rhythmical movement, visceral versus strict. But above all, it is alive.
The artwork used for Autotomy’s sleeve design and the etching on the B-side was provided by Louis Reith. (All three tracks feature on the record’s A-side.) Just as Patricia, Reith tries to resist technology in favour of physical and craft-based media, though the contrast between digital and analog is always present.
Dutch artist Louis Reith produces works through a variety of different media, ranging from collages to wood sculptures, to paper objects and ink on paper works, always keeping an interest in simple abstract shapes and their combination. With an interest in materiality Louis resurrects found footage and creates new landscapes of shape and color, celebrating the human hand at work. Deliberate compositions form an illegible visual language where hidden words are portrayed as abstract sculptures.Reith also co-runs Jordskred, an independent publishing company worth checking out.
Ravitz certainly is unstoppable and releases in a relentless and uncompromising fashion. Besides many collaborative projects with an array of artists (released under monikers such as Masks, Pulpo, Inhalants, DSR.MR…) he's released music on labels like Opal Tapes, L.I.E.S., Russian Torrent Versions, Ghostly Intl.,… 2017 has been quite a year for him so far. He not only founded his own imprint, Active Cultures, but also released a triple LP. Ghostly Intl. describes the release as a “kaleidoscopic, a multi-faceted techno trip” and we couldn’t agree more.