Stephan Thelen composes all pieces with few exceptions, where he figures as co-composer. His approach to music via polymetric, minimalist structures are at least in part due to his life as a mathematician. Still, no composition will survive without an emotional content. This is provided via the energetic, ritualistic, and pointillist way the musicians present the music on stage. Stephan Thelen has played among others with Irène Schweizer and Henry Kaiser.
Guitarist Bernhard Wagner has been supporting act for Nik Bärtsch‘s Ronin for many years. His musical zest, the crystal clear guitar sounds and his unique approach to odd rhythms leave a special mark on the music. He not only manages to inspire as a guitarist but also as instructor of workshops that he teaches, involving various percussion instruments. He is an active member of the international live looping scene, for which he has organised festivals lasting several days.
Bassist Christian Kuntner has been playing since 30 years with Stephan Thelen. Less is more seems to be his motto and he gets rid of all musical ballast in his playing. Deep sounds and grooves maunder on soft paws; his bass work prowls beneath the twittering canopy of harmonics like some pensive big cat on the look out for a bite. Christian Kuntner grew up in the musically rich 80s, has played with countless musicians and can be heard on more than 40 recordings.
Manuel Pasquinelli is a dynamic drummer who also acts as composer for his own bands. His playing is precise and powerful. His musical approach, thinking beyond his own instrument, characterises his way of playing and lets even the most complex rhythms sound natural and effortless and gives the multi-layered and intricate polyrhythms of Sonar's music an organic quality.
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