Gesaffelstein uses techno and electro idioms as tools designed to create an distinctive, closed aural universe. Transforms and appropriates those musical lexicons to write epics and atmospherics that reach beyond dancefloor expectations or illustrative goals. Envisions his work as system of closely related pieces, and not just as a bunch of good tracks. Works on textures and spaces with as much attention as on beats and composition: thinks his music is no less physical than a sculpture or architecture work, and is built as an expression of an objective environment rather than just his own individual thoughts.
Listening to Gesaffelstein pieces can’t be just a passive, light-headed activity: you need to let yourself fully go inside it. The experience might seem dark and heavy, but it’s actually so fine-tuned it ends up giving you an impression of intense satisfaction: it’s a deep pleasure to hear an artist express the hard-edged, angst-ridden vibe of our contemporary times with such detail and such perfect sense of form. There’s a strong classicist feeling to his whole work: nothing is useless or ill-ordered, every sound and every silence are necessary and strongly tied to the rest of the action. It’s like a superior force makes them be just where they are: it’s not about a « personal decision », and more about following a grander structure. Things in Gesaffelstein tracks can sometimes get extremely tense, sometimes unbelievably self-assured and dominant, other times just plain cathartic, while they can also just float through grey shadowed areas, being numb and lost. But this wide range of feelings is actually serving one unique design : making proper art music for a never-ending, splendid apocalypse.
As a DJ, Gesaffelstein is not what you could call a crowd-pleaser: he plays heavy-minded music with bold precision and is not here to make you dance like jitterbugs or to soundtrack your pick-up tactics. His live shows are equally severe: no audience bonding at all, just rugged, immersive sound matter, arranged with sadistic care and respect.