Ata ‘Sote’ Ebtekar is an electronic music composer, sound artist, and recording engineer currently based in Tehran, Iran, whose work reconstructs traditional or regional tonal systems and rhythmic structures through synthesis and modular electronics. His current work approaches techno from a maximalist perspective, creating structural groove through programmed, pitched sounds rather than orthodox beats. Also active in the sphere of sound art and academia, Ebtekar’s compositions and multi-channel installations decode and re-generate patterns of thought (both folkloric and contemporary) using electro-acoustic techniques, microtonal systems, and polyrhythmic motifs.


In the early 2000s, Iranian artist Ata Ebtekar was picked up by Warp Records. His debut saw the two high-charged percussive assaults, ‘Electric Deaf’ and ‘Subconscious (Pure Mix)’ under the name Sote. The record navigated away from the more conceptual releases Warp had been exploring around the time, instead slamming the listener with redlining kicks and shuddering reece basslines.

A number of other Sote releases followed, but between 2007- 2014, things went somewhat quiet in terms of recorded works. This is not to say he was in quiet retreat however. Ebtekar also works as a lecturer and installation artist, and has produced sound and installation art for numerous galleries in San Francisco, the City in which he studied Audio Engineering. One project involved creating a sound sculpture for the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco with Ala Ebtkebar, another creating multi-channel sound art from manipulated recordings of protest chants during various demonstrations in the 1978/79 Iranian Revolution.

In 2014, record’s from under the Sote name started re-emerging, and the past two years this trend has continued – a drone/experimental Opal Tapes cassette, ‘Hardcore Sounds From Tehran’ released earlier this year. Despite a general move away from dancefloor sounds in more recent years, it is Ebtekar’s breakneck hardcore/techno experiments which make up his latest release. ‘Neuroenhancer’ and ‘In Music I Trust’ were written in the late ’90s, Shapednoise fronted Repitch Recordings seeing fit to bring them to light nearly two decades since they were first written.  (CTM Berlin)

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