Oberst & Buchner are two friends and musicians living in Vienna and Berlin. They look back on a mutual musical journey that is as rich in variety as it is more than 15 years long. For one thing, countless high-energy DJ sets in clubs and at festivals all over Europe in recent years have earned them a reputation as a dynamic duo infernale. At the same time, their own productions draw from the full palette of moods and emotions.
‘Freie Sicht’ – the brand new single from Berlin and Vienna-based production duo Oberst & Buchner and German vocalist Acud – is now available via Heimlich Musik. Landing alongside a brace of remixes from Tal Fussman and Shubostar, ‘Freie Sicht’ is the latest single to be taken from Oberst & Buchner’s upcoming studio album ‘Marble Arch’, which hits stores this September 16th.
EG caught up with Oberst & Buchner to learn more about the release of ‘Freie Sicht’, their ‘Marble Arch’ LP, workflow, inspirations, the current state of the scene, and much more.
EG: Hi guys! Welcome to EG. It’s a pleasure to have you here with us. Where are you based right now? How have you been?
Oberst & Buchner: Thanks for having us. We just came back from one of the last festivals of the year in the north of Germany and we are currently in our hometowns, Vienna and Berlin.
EG: So, what has your summer been like so far? What have been some of your favorite highlights?
Oberst & Buchner: We had an intense festival summer that felt almost like the time before the pandemic. We are more than thankful to have had the opportunity to see so many places, make new friends, and spend some time with old friends. Picking a favorite gig is pretty easy this year since we played at the Fusion Festival for the first time, which is the mother of all electronic festivals to us. We got the chance to play the closing set of a stage that is one of our favorites since we first went to the Fusion. Everything was perfect, almost like in a movie. Packed with friends, the floor went wild and to us, it was maybe the biggest bucket list moment of our friendship and musical journey. Whenever we think of this moment or listen to one of the tracks we played during our set, we still get goosebumps.
EG: Congratulations on the drop of your new single ‘Freie Sicht’! What has the reception been like so far?
Oberst & Buchner: We have gotten very good feedback from DJs and radios so far. We also got surprised a few times when attending DJ sets at festivals and listening to the original or one of the remixes.
EG: ‘Freie Sicht’ also comes with its own music video, complete with a gripping narrative. How and why did you decide to portray this story? What is the meaning of ‘Freie Sicht’?
Oberst & Buchner: We asked Harry Delgas & Nico Ohnesorge, two guys from Stuttgart, to take care of the video after having seen some of their work that we really liked. We had a good feeling about this after the first call already and started to collect ideas together. After a mood video, they started shooting. When they sent us the final result we were stunned by how they executed the whole idea, including every little detail we were talking about before. So we can definitely say that we are super happy with the final result. It’s kind of hard to talk about the meaning of the video. We never talked with Acud about the meaning of the lyrics, not because we are not interested in it, but because it’s very hard to interpret the lyrics. He is wailing, “Do you see me, don’t you see me, I see you, I don’t see you,” throughout the track. On the face of it, a text of minimalistic simplicity, even naivety, but if you look at it more closely, they are words that are hard to grasp in their ambiguity and difficult to interpret. The well-known phrases become unfamiliar as he continually shifts the meaning by switching intonations.
“He is wailing, “Do you see me, don’t you see me, I see you, I don’t see you,” throughout the track. On the face of it, a text of minimalistic simplicity, even naivety, but if you look at it more closely, they are words that are hard to grasp in their ambiguity and difficult to interpret. The well-known phrases become unfamiliar as he continually shifts the meaning by switching intonations”
EG: And, of course, ‘Freie Sicht’ is the first glimpse into your forthcoming ‘Marble Arch’ LP on Heimlich Musik! Congratulations, you must be very excited! Why did you guys decide to share ‘Freie Sicht’ as an introduction to ‘Marble Arch’?
Oberst & Buchner: It has been one of our favorite tracks since we produced it two years ago. It became even more relevant with the lyrics on top. The music video narrates a lot and is, for us, the most single-like track on the album.
EG: What can your fans expect to find on ‘Marble Arch’? What was the recording process like?
Oberst & Buchner: We think it’s our most ambitious work yet. We produced 10 tracks in 7 days. After the collection of the initial sketches, we worked for one and a half years on those songs to shape them to our satisfaction. We asked friends and idols to collaborate on some songs like Acud, Aydo Abay, Mimu, Kalipo, and Faber. We worked together with genius minds like Jakob Hagelsperger for mixing or HP Mastering Studio for the final touch. Not only the music but the vinyl became a beautiful piece of art with a lot of specials and things to discover. Andy himself created the whole artwork and we are very proud of the outcome. We don’t want to talk too much about the music yet. But it is safe to say that it’s a good mixture of all the different styles that shaped our sound over the years.
EG: What have you learned about yourselves recording ‘Marble Arch’?
Oberst & Buchner: That we will never ever do an album again. haha! No, it has been a lot of work, but it has also been a lot of fun, from jamming to developing the finished product. We have learned a lot about how the music industry works nowadays, and how much it even has changed since our first album. We learned a lot about the cooperation between artists and labels since we have been on the same side for the first time.
EG: Is there a concept or backstory to ‘Marble Arch’ as a whole? Do you tell stories through your tracks? Where do you guys go to for inspiration?
Oberst & Buchner: ‘Marble Arch’ started as a pretty rough concept: We knew that we wanted to get together, for a long time, in a surrounding that we hadn’t been to yet to spend the summer producing music. We wanted to get out of our usual surroundings since the time around the pandemic hadn’t inspired us much as musicians. We also knew that we were aiming for an album. In the end, it was a coincidence that we found a suitable place, a 250-year-old house in the Bavarian forest, that in the end had also a big impact on the sound. We used instruments that we found in the house, you can hear and feel the room, as well as the weather on the recordings we made there. The artwork as well is inspired by that location.
“Most DJs are paid quite well, but there are still a lot of people in the scene that get paid nothing or less. A carpenter that has to build festival stages over 3 weeks and works for his ticket should be paid more, even if the consumer has to pay more for the ticket in the end. We are happy to see more women on the lineups, but there is still a long way to go”
EG: What are your thoughts on the current state of the scene? What would you like to see more and less of?
Oberst & Buchner: The scene is flourishing: There are a lot of new festivals, clubs, and parties. Nevertheless, as we grow older, we realize how hard it is for people to live inside this subculture. Most DJs are paid quite well, but there are still a lot of people in the scene that get paid nothing or less. A carpenter that has to build festival stages over 3 weeks and works for his ticket should be paid more, even if the consumer has to pay more for the ticket in the end. We are happy to see more women on the lineups, but there is still a long way to go. We try to push this actively with our Heimlich parties, podcasts, and releases.
EG: What’s next for Oberst & Buchner? What particular milestones are you looking forwards to now?
Oberst & Buchner: We are quite excited to get our album finally released. We are very curious how it will be received after this long process. As we are releasing the album on our own label, we have plenty of work with the release being the artists and the label at the same time. After the release and a summer full of festivals, we hope to regain some free time to produce new originals and remixes. And of course, we will play some shows if we don’t have any lockdowns again.
EG: Thank you so much for your time, guys! We wish you all the best for the future.
Oberst & Buchner: Thank you. All the best to you too!
Oberst & Buchner’s new album ‘Marble Arch’ will be released on September 16th via Heimlich Music. Purchase your copy here.