NIHILS are really taking off, through the stratosphere and beyond. The Berlin-based constellation of multi-instrumentalists Ramon, Thomas and Florian have created not only a new EP - AM/PM Part 2: Interplanetary Maze - but an entire space system. Five tracks, each with its own world orbiting around central themes of humanity, exploration and the future.
The announcement is celebratted with the release of first single, I WON’T BE, with its uplifting vibes, 16ths-powered bassline and Kraftwerk-esque vocoder sample, gives us a taste of what we’ve been missing in a year without Berlin club culture. NIHILS refuse to be held back by gravity, delivering a swirl of synths around a solid core of a beat, Ramon’s trademark effortless vocals delivered with just enough emotion to push them into an eternal trajectory in the vacuum of our post-lockdown minds.
After writing their previous EP - AM/PM Part I - during a complete lockdown, sharing and sending stems and sketches digitally, the trio got back to writing in one room together, meeting on Fridays like clockwork. After a concert-less year that still saw them break the 50 million streams mark on Spotify, it was a kick back out of their comfort zone, stepping out from the capsule, an optimistic spacewalk with no tether, waiting excitedly for a note or a beat to break the silence. The sounds came and burst like a supernova, forming moments like the middle-eight in HALFMOON, taking the band down a wormhole, a journey to unvisited territory, as much about self- discovery as escapism.
Known for their laser-sharp visuals, NIHILS found space-age inspiration in Basim Magdy’s futuristic works at Berlin’s König Galerie. It opened their eyes to more space-themed art, Olafur Eliasson’s among others, and eventually led them to Alex Miller & Alex Nagy (together SPACEFILLER). Their cover artwork of abstract pixels is created with code, using the NIHILS soundtrack as a source, uniting digital mastery with a unique human fingerprint.
If Space Odyssey was 2001, and listening parties were 2011, in 2021 NIHILS launched a weather-balloon from the German capital 35,000 metres up into the stratosphere. Attached was a Transparent speaker, signalling the EP into the ether, literally launching it on release day.
At a moment in our existence where everyone on Earth is faced with questions that are no longer fragmented or individual, and billionaires are the lucky few to gaze down upon our planet, Interplanetary Maze gives us all more space, just when we really need it.