Sunday, 19 January 2020

Roy G. Biv - Yellow -1980- (Tape, Self-Released), Netherlands


Roy G. Biv (Red Orange Yellow Green Blue Indigo Violet) was the home-taping project and sound & color improvisation band of Dutch musician and visual artist Robin Deirkauf who sadly passed away last year. I think the first tapes were solo-projects and later the project was joined by Edward Vunderink (guitars, voice) and Frans Evers (keyboards). Yellow is one of the first three tapes by Roy G. Biv from 1980 and just like some of Conrad Schnitzler's work it was dedicated to a specific color. The band also did a red and a blue cassette (I have never seen or heard the blue one). Here's a brief and interesting biography I found on Deirkauf's personal website:

"In his early childhood Deirkauf grew up in the Caribbean, where his father was an antiques dealer, mainly specialized in African and Asiatic art. The exotic colorful underwater world at that time and the antiques has had a profound influence on his later drawings and paintings.

Sign, symbol and script are recurring elements in his sometimes eclectic work, it is characterized by ancient, primordial pictoral power, mixed with modern constructivist elements and bright colors. After this period he turned to a more formal and conceptual way of analizing the image, resulting in the development of a matrix used to create a pictographic alphabet consisting of primary colors and forms.

During the late 70's and early 80's Deirkauf founded the experimental sound and color improvisation group  Roy G. Biv for the realization of the multimedia art project phase III with Edward Vunderink and Frans Evers, what resulted in 10 music albums."

Roy G. Biv's Yellow tape is a great improvised jam-session like endeavour of cosmic electronic soundscapes reminding me of Krautrock groups from the 70's like Agitation Free, Ash Ra Tempel and other Manuel Göttsching works. It's also highly influenced by minimal music and because of the color themes, the Conrad Schnitzler analogy remains a given ofcourse. Not too often do the early home-taping cassettes from The Netherlands lean more towards the psychedelic and cosmic electronic side of the musical spectrum instead of the more commonly found industrial or minimal synth tapes from those times.

It's nice to find out about the existence of different and more cosmic music from Amsterdam from a time when half of the city was filled with squats with punks and new wave had already arrived both in fashion and music. I suppose Roy G. Biv shows the musical transition from the 70's with its psychedelic sounds to the DIY sound approach of the 80's and carries both decades in its spirit. Maybe that approach is also interwoven into the story of the Dutch wave and ultra band Mekanik Kommando that later turned into the psychedelic group The Use of Ashes.

Most of the Roy G. Biv albums were uploaded on No Longer Forgotten Music some time ago. Wonderful stuff. And ofcourse rest in peace Robin Deirkauf. Maybe some reissues have to be done in his memory.

The red tape will also be uploaded to the blog one day.

Get it HERE

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