Peter Frohmader – Organic Still Life

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Genre: Experimental Electronic, Krautrock, Berlin School

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Peter Frohmader biography

Born 9th May 1958 (Munich, Germany)

The multi-instrumentalist Peter Frohmader is the founder and leader of Nekropolis (heavy & dark electronic rock group launched in the late 70’s). Five major albums have been published under the name (Nekropolis, Nekropolis 2, Two Compositions Nekropolis Live & “Cultes des Goules” from 1979 – 1985).

More in the vein of krautrock dark experimentations (with tape manipulations and doom bass sequences), “musik aus dem schattenreich Nekropolis” was released under the same name (1978-79). Nekropolis and Peter Frohmader solo projects are considered as leading experiences in the appreciation of complex modern electronica. Their synthetic, electronic textures and obvious tastes for free jazz, avant-garde improvisations are linked to Heldon, Richard Pinhas, Magma.

Frohmader was first deeply influenced by the “cosmic” electronic wave of 70’s Berlin underground (Klaus Schulze and Ashra Tempel at the top). Found of paintings and drawings, his music also reproduces his mental, subconscious pictures and obsessions. He created his own laboratory “Nekropolis studio” in Munich.

His first soloing extended electronic manifestations were “Orakel/Tiefe” (1983) “Ritual” (1987). Published in 1990, “Macrocosm” ‘3rd Millennium’s Choice Vol. 1′ is considered as a little classic with its deep ambient and almost gothic synth ambiences. He is accompanied by Stephan Manus (on violin) who is also a guest musician in “Ritual” and “Orakel/Tiefe”. Released around the same period, “Eismeer” carries on Sci-Fi, menacing and creepy atmospheric synthesizers’ explorations.

“Cycle of Eternity” (1992) is a contemplative, spiritual journey throw electronic realms. Frohmader collaborated with Richard Pinhas (Heldon) in the massive and hypnotic “Fossile Culture” (1999). In his later works, Frohmader experiments accessible and floating ambient soundscapes closed to Brian Eno and late Cluster (Space Icon. 2002 : Transfiguration).


Höchste Zeit also, diesen Mißstand zu beenden. Und einen Mann vorzustellen, der – obwohl erst Jahrgang 1958 – bereits seit den späten 60ern unbeirrt an seiner künstlerischen Vision festhält. Um die näher zu erklären, muß man ins 18. Jahrhundert zurückgehen: Peter Frohmader sieht sich ganz in der Tradition der Romantik, die er – musikalisch wie visuell – mit modernsten Mitteln wiederbelebt.

Denn Frohmader ist nicht nur ein versierter Elektonik-Spezialist, der die meisten seiner Alben im hauseigenen “Nekropolis”- Studio nahezu im Alleingang eingespielt hat, sondern auch ein diplomierter Maler, der bevorzugt mit der Spritzpistole an seinen obskur-mystischen Werken arbeitet. Musikalisch gelang ihm bereits 1978 mit seinem ersten Album “Nekropolis – Musik aus dem Schattenreich” der Klassiker der Gothic-Musik. Ein Album übrigens, das seit kurzem endlich – passend zum 20jährigen Jubiläum des Meisterwerks – beim kleinen, aber feinen Münchner “Ohrwaschl”-Label auf CD erschienen ist. Nach Erscheinen des Albums war der legendäre Mystik- Maler H. R. Giger so begeistert, daß er Frohmader eine Zusammenarbeit vorschlug. Resultat war Frohmaders Soundtrack für Gigers Film “Second Celebration Of The Four”.

Plus eine Freundschaft des “magischen Duos”, die bis heute anhält. In den 80er Jahren hat Peter Frohmader Bass- Symphonien komponiert, makaberimaginäre Soundtracks, Ambient-Werke oder an Magma und Can angelehnte Groove-Nummern. In seinen Bildern ersetzte er immer wieder gerne die Spritzpistole durch einen simplen Bleistift. All das zu dem Zweck, seine Tagträume, Jenseitsgedanken und inneren Traumwelten möglichst adäquat darzustellen.

“Wobei”, sagt Frohmader, “ich in den letzten Jahren von der sogenannten ‘Angst-Musik’ wegwollte. Mein Anliegen heute ist, einen Begriff von Schönheit umzusetzen – weg von der Realität, hin zur klassischen Romantik. Dazu gehören natürlich auch die Abgründe im menschlichen Wesen. Romantik ist immer sehnsüchtig.”


Peter FROHMADER is one of the most innovative and fascinating composers of electronic music. Even in his first album (“Nekropolis – Musik aus dem Schattenreich” issued in 1978), this German bass player, guitar player and keyboardist could impose an astonishing musical style, developed in the Eighties on soundtracks, ambient tracks, symphonies.

Sometimes Influenced at first by MAGMA, his albums want to be an approach to Death and Nothingness. It is not a coincidence if heʼs considered one of the fathers of the Gothic movement ! Composed over a six-year period (1997-2002), “Eismeer” is finally issued in early 2003, on the Gazul label. The author himself describes this work as “…A musical expedition, the movements of a boat on the sea”. The polyrhythmic, the harmony and the dissonances create a meditative and dark atmosphere. This trip on an ice sea proves intense and made of an unusual musicality. Very carefully written and performed, this epic of Nothingness is a highlight of contemporary electronic music.

A major Krautrock keyboardist and part of the German and European electronic music scene, the Munich-based painter and artist Peter FROHMADER has also collaborated with the greatest. Respectively recorded in 1981 and 1982, “Nekropolis – Cultes des Goules” & “Nekropolis II” especially show his talents as a multi-instrumentalist.

This solo work is mainly about dark and highly experimental music, somewhere between HELDON, MAGMA & UNIVERS ZERO.

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