Richard H. Kirk - Dasein 2xLP


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Label: Intone

Dasein is Richard H. Kirk's first solo album since 2011. Recorded, produced, and written by the founding member of Cabaret Voltaire himself, the album was constructed at Western Works, Sheffield, over a three-year period. Work began with recording on midi and analog synthesizers before guitar and vocals - his first use of vocals in ten years - were added. Kirk explains, "A lot of time was spent on post-production, editing and then living with the material and I think it benefited from stepping back and then revisiting after doing other things." Although it's not an overtly political album, it's hard not to hear a reaction to recent years' world events in the overwhelming urgency of "Nuclear Cloud," "20 Block Lockdown," or "New Lucifer / The Truth Is Bad." When questioned Kirk admits, "It's not really a political album, but over recent years - during the recording - all manner of horror show events have cropped up and now we seem to be in a rerun of the Cold War with Russia back as the Bogeyman." The album's title, Dasein (a German word meaning "being there" or "presence," often translated into English as "existence"), is a fundamental concept in existentialism. Kirk explains "culture succumbs to nostalgia in much the same way that an individual looks back wistfully to adolescence or childhood - the nostalgia is partly for a time when he or she wasn't nostalgic, just lived purely in the now." In 2014, during the recording period, Kirk started performing live again with Cabaret Voltaire, so the two projects coexisted in tandem. Although Kirk's varied projects have always existed separate to one another, says Kirk, "in the past some solo works served as a blueprint for what I did later with Cabaret Voltaire."