Other Nothing – Not Songs

Paul Kintzing is best known for his work under the pseudonym German Error Message. His compositions under that name are sublime and a bit fragile but not without their doses of optimism. After a five year hiatus, he’s released a full album as German Error Message, a standalone single and a collection of instrumental compositions created between 2017 and 2018, released as Other Nothing.

At the core, there are many similarities to his primary undertaking; the production has the same tape hiss feel to it, there is a lot of space in the tracks and they evoke a reflective nature. However, the instrumentation here is more otherworldly, found somewhere deeper down the rabbit hole. There’s backward masking, instruments struggling to fully express themselves and a notable lack of acoustic guitars and drums.

According to Kintzing, these tracks were recorded “quickly and compulsively” as he “explored new sounds and processes.” Ultimately, the learnings from these would inform Mend but the two are best considered siblings; similar in their genetic makeup but altogether individual. These songs were meant to be sketches and fleeting thoughts but they don’t come across that way. Despite their short track length, they feel fully formed and wholly expressive.