There exists an argument out there amongst the swathes of musical opinion as to exactly at what point in their recording career an artist is at their best. Is it ‘X’ amount of years down the line when wisdom and experienced have finally reared their all-knowing heads? Or, is it in that first album when the artist first engages themselves fully in music expressing a lifetime of influences and ideas; before they learn the rules.
But for Romanian born producer Cosmin TRG, even before he released his debut album Simulat in 2011, there was already a wealth of accomplished and varied releases to his name as he explored dubstep and garage tilted beats across Hessle Audio, Hotflush, Tempa, and Rush Hour. Dropping on Modeselektor’s 50Weapons label, his debut artist album found itself leaning on the undeniably techno influences channelled from his new home of Berlin, yet the complexity and colour of his influences (and discography) were what set him up and, to some people, defined his sound. Either way, his music remains full of colour, texture and complexity or as the press release for his follow up LP ‘Gordian’ puts it, ‘rusted techno frequencies’.
“Gordian is as much a document of my past year as it is the beginning of a conversation,” is how Cosmin himself puts in in the album’s press release hinting at the origins of his second album. “The title references an ancient myth, but describes the very contemporary, impossible task of discerning between real and replicated, authentic and contrived. Coping with facts, objects and bodies, the necessity of 'making it', fear of failure, fear of 'not being happy' are today's topics, and Gordian is my attempt at an exploration of those issues."
Today we got to hear for ourselves how he tackled that typically ‘difficult’ second album, and frankly, we think he’s nailed it. So, as Cosmin TRG conquers the follow up and readies his return to Room Two next Saturday, we felt it apt we ask him to share with us his top five second artist albums of all time and it turns out that for him, they were some of the artist’s best and most inspirational work.
Cosmin TRG's 5 Best Difficult Second Albums
1. Kraftwerk - Kraftwerk 2
I know starting with Kraftwerk is pretty obvious, but I think their second album is that one album everyone knows about but hasn't really listened to. The first few minutes of Kling Klang are pretty much my definition of modern music, and it has really informed my new album.
2. Jega - Geometry
The title track of Jega's second album is pure magic, a blissed-out goosebump fest.
3. Autechre - Amber
To be completely honest I love all of Autechre's oeuvre, and Amber was the unique moment when you feel everything falls into place, sonically speaking.
4. Boards of Canada - Geogaddi
As I include Geogaddi in my list I realise these are probably the albums that have been most influential in my life, and they all fall under that loose IDM category. Then again, it’s hard to think of anyone who hasn't been influenced by BoC!
5. Bjork - Post
I loved Bjork's first album, but Post was the one I really felt close to. It had everything: the belligerent pace of Army of Me, the extatic Hyperballad or the sparkly Possibly Maybe. An extremely well-ballanced and properly paced record.
Cosmin TRG will be in Room Two on Saturday 2nd March with A Made Up Sound and Terry Francis. For more info and tickets go here.