Mouse on Mars is recognized as one of Germany’s most defining and versatile electronic music projects. With their anarchic mixture of sound that oscillates between uncontrollable chaos and meticulously arranged structures, Jan St. Werner and Andi Toma have forged a unique musical language, which is readily decomposed by the unpredictability of its myriad mutations.
This dialectical method, coupled with the capacity for continuous reinvention, is the only constant to be found in the duo’s cooperation. Free from schools of thought, genre conventions, and from the constraints of the music establishment, they have worked under the Mouse on Mars alias for 24 years, mapping their own idiosyncratic trajectory through a no man’s land between pop, art, club music, and the avant-garde.
The duo represents one of Germany’s few experimental pop acts to have stirred wide international attention and acclaim. Four Peel sessions alone, recorded at the legendary BBC Radio, attest to their influence.
Through this attitude and approach, Mouse on Mars’s work can be seen as a kind of counterpoint to German electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk, also from Düsseldorf. While Kraftwerk’s conceptual rigour, cool efficiency, perfect accuracy and discipline, retro glamour, and techno euphoric engineering spirit keeps struggling with German angst and its problematic relationship to authority, Mouse on Mars prefer to leave this arena behind.
From the beginning, they have asserted themselves within artistically, culturally, and geographically broad perspectives, swerving away from rigid identity constructs. While Mouse on Mars is, of course, an identity based project, its members attempt to create a more fluid, productive, and less anxiety ridden understanding of identity – one that strives to break through the firmly entrenched structures of authority and social constructs, so that the resulting energy which is released may be channeled into unconstrained artistic processes.