Anders Filipsen: Waiting Music

This almost hypnotic cross-genre exploration of sound using just four synthesisers would make for successful film music


Danish pianist, synth player and composer Anders Filipsen here creates a soundscape using four synthesisers in live takes, with no further editing involved. What really stands out is the intriguing inspiration behind it. The idea came from waiting for the Knippels bridge in Copenhagen, where “the bridge goes up and intuitively. I anticipate that everyone will look at their phones and be frustrated by the fact that they can’t go on with their daily doings. But no! A peacefulness filled the air, and it seemed that everyone quietly accepted the fact that they had to wait.” After this experience, Waiting Music was born.

The use of synthesisers to create atmospheric soundscapes immediately reminds me of Max Richter. This almost hypnotic cross-genre exploration of sound would make for successful film music. Filipsen has previously been described as a “sound-artist” rather than musician and I can’t help but agree. Each track explores sound in such a way that it sounds familiar but not overly repetitive as it gently oscillates. Some sounds are unrecognisable, whilst some sound like what could be a vocalisation or an orchestra tuning, before the ear gets used to hearing the sounds just as sounds.

Accompanying “short films” show 12 locations where Filipsen has experienced depth of spirit. Although “short film” may be a stretch, these videos do help the listener focus on the moment. Listening to this rippling, circling music whilst watching these scenes absorbs you, as all you’re aware of is your own breathing.

As the end of lockdowns are in sight, and we wait for things to reopen and life to return to normal, this music is more poignant than ever. We’re all waiting, and Anders Filipsen provides us with the soundtrack to wait to.

Part I; Part II; Part III; Part IV; Part V; Part VI; Part VII; Part VIII; Part IX; Part X; Part XI; Part XII (42.26)
Filipsen (syn). Copenhagen, 29 January 2021.