Alva Noto preps for puns and excited unibrows, announces triology-capping UNIEQAV album, plus international live dates

Alva Noto preps for puns and excited unibrows, announces triology-capping UNIEQAV album, plus international live dates
Photo: Deter Wuschanski

The next time you’re outside of the United States and overhear someone talking about “uni,” consider your surroundings and whether or not the person in question is past their mid-twenties and wearing a t-shirt with Avogadro’s number wrapping around the front and back. That person could be referring to the next step in their academic career (with “uni” obviously being short for “university”), or you may just be eavesdropping on a much more important conversation surrounding the release of German musician Carsten Nicolai’s newest album under the Alva Noto moniker, UNIEQAV, which is scheduled to be the third in a deliberate trilogy of albums which take “uni” as their titles’ prefix.

Supposedly Nicolai’s “uni” saga began when he was booked for a show at the Unit club in Tokyo, and he was forced to adjust his sound for clubgoers who wouldn’t have taken kindly to two hours of manipulated static (the entire “uni” trio thus became an ongoing exploration of his more dance-able endeavors).

UNIEQAV is scheduled for release March 16 on Nicolai’s revived Noton label, and as alluded to above, it thematically follows Unitxt and univrs, which came out in 2008 and 2011, respectively.

This new one is described by Nicolai as “sonically representing an underwater dive,” and true to historical form, he used both scientific and mathematical ideas as practical inspiration for the sounds he swam through and ultimately brought back to the surface. French poet Anne-James Chaton likewise reprises his “uni” role by contributing vocals for the track “Uni Dna.” He apparently recited amino acids that comprise a DNA molecule.

An additional tidbit: the cover of each album in the trilogy form a triptych that says “uni.” How uniquely cool! Behold:

Anyway, pre-order UNIEQAV from Noton now, check out a listing of Noto’s scheduled live performances of the full album below, and recall the glory days of Noto’s past uni-explorations right down here:

UNIEQAV tracklisting:

01. Uni Sub
02. Uni Mia
03. Uni Version
04. Uni Clip
05. Uni Normal
06. Uni Mic A
07. Uni Blue
08. Uni Mic B
09. Uni Dna
10. Uni Edit
11. Uni Tra
12. Uni Chord

Live Alva:

03.01.18 - Berlin, Germany - Alva Noto presents UNIEQAV @ Funkhaus
03.03.18 - Paris, France - Alva Noto presents UNIEQAV @ La Gaîté lyrique
03.04.18 - London, UK - Alva Noto presents UNIEQAV with Anne-James Chaton @ The Barbican
06.16.18 - Barcelona, Spain - Alva Noto presents UNIEQAV @ SONAR Festival

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