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Biography: Robert Babicz aka Rob Acid

"A Cheerful Temper", the name of Robert Babicz’s debut album for Systematic Recordings is arguably the best way to describe the Cologne based Pole. Answering the question why he is choosing this specific name, Babicz explains that he feels caught between two worlds: “The real world of everyday life and a surreal dream world comparable to the backdrop of a fairy tale.” Robert’s musical career starts out quite exceptionally and indeed rather fabulously in the early 90s. Right after the phenomenon of Chicago and deep house, techno began to establish itself as a brand new and totally original part of youth culture. In 1989, the year the wall came down, Berlin sees the first big techno happenings like Love Parade and Teknozid. But Cologne also sees many new clubs like the Space club or the Sweatbox. Pioneers of these days were Reinhard and Wolfgang Voigt (now running the Kompakt empire), The Modernist, Mate Galic, Roland Casper and Rob Acid (aka Robert Babicz). Robert’s first release “Happy answer” becomes an unexpectedly big hit. Especially in the UK, on the label London Records the track storms the charts at the same time as M.A.R.R.S. “Pump up the volume” and “Theme from s-express”. More and more acid house influenced records come out and soon they dominate club culture. Of the time Robert wistfully remembers: “It was an incredibly exciting but also very excessive time of my life with loads of wonderful moments and parties.” At the end of the 90s Robert withdraws somewhat in order to reflect and to reinvent himself. He begins to produce records as Atlon Inc and Dicabor, with an identity completely opposite to that of Rob Acid productions. The quality and the sound standard of these ambient projects become more and more important in his work and at the same time they improve it as he masters new equipment and techniques. In 2001 he meets Marc Romboy and Klaus Derichs and together they create a new platform called Shortcut Recordings dedicated to Robert’s club tracks. After a period of calm and relaxed tracks it is now time to pump up the volume and raise the BPMs again. His productions become very technoish at this stage, moving away from his acid house influences. After Robert collaborates with Marc Romboy on the label Le Petit Prince, Romboy creates Systematic Recordings in the summer of 2004. He asks Robert to remix his first single with the Detroit legend Blake Baxter and to do a new version for Berlin’s house impresario Phonique. On top of that Robert starts to release singles on high profiled imprints like Kompakt, Treibstoff and Steve Bug’s Audiomatique. Those who are following Robert’s career over the years, know that his sound and the standard of his productions reach almost audiophile standards. No surprise then that many well known artists like Martinez, Minilogue or Gabriel Ananda request his special abilities for mastering their productions. One reason for his famous sound stems in part from his collection of old analogue equipment (even from the 60s and 70s) which Robert uses alongside his computer. Besides drum machines like the famous Roland TR808 and TR909, Robert owns a variety of unique machines like special effects and EQs the size of living rooms, some taken from German TV stations to edit their movies and crime shows. He even uses equalizers used by the secret service and compressors used by East German radio stations. It is no wonder then that the sound quality of the album is both graceful and crystal clear. Tracks like “Sin” and “Loosing Memories” surprise with their club compatible deepness while at the same time moving between the genres of Electronica, Techno and classic House. ‘A Cheerful Temper’ is indeed a very special and genre-breaking album full of beautiful electronic club music.

Please have a look on Robert ?s webpages not to miss one of his legendary live shows in your area. Apart from other producers Babicz does not play as a DJ but as a real live act without any playbacks. Any of his shows is distinctive and individual as he never performs the same songs and sounds. Robert is on extended album promotion world tour in 2007.

In the last few years there has been a proliferation in the amount of people producing really good techno, acid, minimal and everything in between. The majority of these producers are new, but Robert Babicz (aka Rob Acid) is an example of an older producer that has managed to stay relevant by reinventing his sound (to some extent). Many of his new tracks have that trademark acid sound, but what we are listening to is most definitely acid for the 21st century. This man is not stuck in the 1990s, him and his machinedrum are moving with the times. The last year or two have seen a series of quality releases for Babicz on labels like Punkt, Treibstoff and K2, making him a producer to keep an eye on.

BIO: Fuente

Robert Babicz es de aquellos productores que gustan de alinear varios nicknames en su discografía pero tal vez lo conozcas también por su otro apelativo artístico, Rob Acid. Un alma desdoblada que es capaz de producir un par de Cds en el sello Mille Plateaux -Momente y Desert- editados con su nombre original entre los años 1999 y 2000 de corte downtempo experimental y abisal que, en principio, no tenían nada que ver con su romance con la TB-303 más pistera y que, al otro lado de la balanza, también puedes ver escrito su nombre en la discografía del sello Knee Deep del terrorífico Dj Rush. Poco después ficharía por el sello Punkt Music donde sacó otro álbum, Sure Sipr, que ya lo encaraba al sonido techno mimimal con toques acid más encarado a la pista y a los charts. Audiomatique Recordings, Treibstoff, Barbarella Music y Out of Orbit han sido algunos de los sellos que se han hecho con los servicios de este auténtico cazabombardero del hitazo instantáneo.

Robert Babicz FOEM Remix Contest

What happend before 2004?

Rob Acid / Dicabor / Sontec / Atlon Inc. / Department of Dance / Acid Warrior / Pumpgun Pro / Colone / Origin / Tannenhof / Twirl / Church Window

On January 5th 1973 Robert is born in Poland. Since 1980 he’s living in Germany and since the beginning of the nineties he released 5 albums and multiple maxi singles on labels like Treibstoff, Punkt, Disko B, Force Inc, Mille Plateaux, Bpitch Control, PAR, Taktik,Treibstoff, Junkfood, Important Records or Knee Deep – the Label of DJ Rush. His pseudonymes Rob Acid, Robert Babicz, Sontec, Dicabor or Atlon Inc impart the wide range of his musical outgrowths; he hits different spots and leaves his marks.

Robert was led to music through a mixture of accident and frustration. Dedicated to his profession as programmer, his frustration about an undiscoverable error drove him to the tracker program of his Commodore Amiga, in a sleepless night. This was the last time, he set down on the Commodore to use it for programming – since that night he was driven to the Computer by music.

His first Maxi Single he released on Holger Wick’s Label “Labworks” (Holger Wick turned out to run the “Sense” Label and become product manager for EFA today). Already his second Maxi, found its way through multiple DJ loud speakers and got licensed to “ffrr”, England. In England it entered the Bullets and almost made it into the official sales-charts. And all Robert needed for his first success, was the rented equipment of Oliver Bondzio (memorized as one half of “Hardfloor”) – a 909, 303 and a 606.

1993 his first production on „Junkfood“ was released – one of the best Labels, at the height of Acid. He dedicated the tracks to his 4 friends: Claus Bachor (D2000), Roland Casper, Malte Galic (today executive board of Native Instruments), Sascha Kösch (runs the De-Bug magazine / DJ in Berlin) and Riley Reinhold (organizer of the Cosmic Orgasm Parties).

His first step into the Clubs followed under the pseudonym “Acid Warrior” on “Junkfood”. DJs like Sven Väth hosted the Vinyl for several months in their cases and so followed the logical consequence: Rob’s first live appearance in Sven’s legendary OMEN club – a club which fascinated Ravers from all over Europe in the nineties.

1994 the next Ravemonster „Ein Blick ins Nichts (a view into nothing)“ was released on Bob Humid’s Label (today the technical editor of Groove Magazine). Since he is known in the scene, Rob Acid’s productions are as demanded as the entry to Sven Väths OMEN temple.

Therefore it came to a signing on “Important Records”, which has been one of Germany’s major labels, among “Jungfood” and “Harthouse”.

Robert also discovered his love to abstract sounds, Chill Out and Ambient music celebrated by artists like “Mixmaster Morris” or “Aural Float”. And especially the very, listed his first “Dicabor” Album in their Playlists and Mixmaster Morris even posted it in his ‘charts of the year’. The artwork got released on the Label of Matthias Roeingh aka Dr. Motte, who became one of the most outstanding protagonists of the young scene by inventing the “Love Parade”. Still, Matthias Roeingh, as well as Mate Galic and Roland Casper, is a good friend and latterly also part of one of Rob Acid’s Projects.

95 and 96 could be called “Rave Years”, Rob is well known as Live Act and rocks all popular Main Events like “Mayday”. The first abroad-bookings bring him to the USA, Canada, Malta, Estonia and other European countries, of course. During this time, Rob Acid finds less time for his productions because he’s booked about every weekend. To play “really live” is most important to him. Till today, he improvises instead of coming up with a ready-made-Set. Therefore his Live Acts are celebrated as unique events. “Playing live is for the moment, not for reproduction”. Which you could interpret in reverse: reproductions are not made for the situational, enthusiastic Party-Event of his understanding.

In the end of 96 Rob teamed up with Mate Galic, who moderates the legendary „Housefrau TV“-Show together with Sabine Christ at that time. (Remember the washing machine!) The team is not to apart for years. Psychedelic experiences of every kind follow. Excessive Sound-research and absurd Parties. Out of transistor radio, bunker and porn films on big screen, the two filtered the essence which is reflected on the “Taktik” Label, arisen in 97.

“Taktik” pushes forward, car racing house, extreme sound research or Minimal might be helpful terms to subscribe the sound – but maybe they are not.

Meanwhile Techno became more than a homogenous, ecstatic body. Separate Groups appeared, the Cologne Minimalism was born and between Frankfurt and Berlin a strange correlation became present.

2000 Robert is gifted by a daughter and does another important Step. Influenced trough powerful productions in the R’n’B Scene, he starts to search after a new sound. The Project “Atlon Inc” is found and hosted by Achim Sczepanski’s Label “Mille Plateaux”. Body focusing Rave ecstasy is taking place on Achim’s “Force Inc” Label. After his time with „Junkfood”, Rob founds his own label again in 2001. It’s named “Shortcut” and Rob brought out 6 releases on it. The soon following Sub label “TB International” stands for the early Acid/Jack Sound of Chicago in the late eighties. At the same time, multiple requests of Hard- and Software producers ask for Sound design. He programs Pre-sets for “Native Instruments”, Steinberg, and gets adopted to the endorsement of Native right away.

As a result of it and the influence of Ivo Malek, Morton Subotnic and Karl-Heinz Stockhausen (who is now living in the neighbourhood) he is doing sound research again. 2 albums appear under his real name Robert Babicz on “Mille Plateaux”, which transfer the language of the experimental music of the 60’s and 70’s (musique concrète) into our days.

2003 again, is a year of action. On one hand he starts a Jazz project (trumpet: Matthias Mainz, drums: Tom, guitar: Alexs Gunjah plus other guest musicians) and on the other hand he is breaking out the Rave animal and alias “Sontec” he releases the Track “Inside” on the newly founded Label “PAR”, which Sven Väth was playing on and on after he got the Dubplate of it. The official release is just as popular and again Robert is listed in several DJ Playlists (such as Dave Clarke’s for example). In the Groove Magazine “Inside” entered Chart Position 8.

2004 Robert is still true to his primary-soup Techno, but still he is one of those musicians who keep searching constantly and while the tracks of one project are released he’s already scouting out new paths. To special events Rob Acid comes together with drummer and guitarist.

many thx to Peter Armster for helping me with the bio. Robert 

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