Frank Makowski (born in 1968) got into electronic music through popular electronic music from France in the late 1970s but what really pulled the trigger for him was the developing Berlin School style of the early 1980s. Early on he began experimenting with tape recorders, fm receivers and an old EKO Tiger organ (that still is part of his studio equipment). By late 1980s he evolved his workflow by changing to digital recording equipment, supporting computer technology and state-of-the-art synthesizers and samplers. In the early 1990s the first official releases appeared, followed by theater and film music projects and numerous live performances.

Not only has Frank gained an artistic credibility in the electronic music scene but also through his design artworks for many albums of other colleagues. He designes the sleeves for all his solo releases himself and also did artworks for artists like COSMIC HOFFMANN, RAINBOW SERPENT, SCHÖNWÄLDER & KELLER and nearly all [´ramp] releases to date, to name some of the more prominent names. The peak of his graphics career undoubtedly was being commissioned to do the artwork for the reissue of EDGAR FROESE´s "Macula Transfer", followed by layout work for the ASH RA TEMPLE / MANUEL GOETTSCHING double CD "The Best Of The Private Tapes", both on Manikin.

Lambert Ringlage & Frank
around 1993


"There can be no transforming of darkness into light and of apathy into movement without emotion."
Carl Jung (1875 - 1961)

The pseudonym TRANQUILLITY was derived from an album of one of his most important early musical influences, JOHANNES SCHMOELLING´s "The Zoo of Tranquillity". Apart from working as a soloist, Frank also collaborated early with other local EM artists, such like TIMEWAVE, which led to his concert debut at the first KLEM NRW Festival in 1993 (where he became sort of like a "performer in residence" as the two subsequent festivals saw him playing as well). Also, he played with Olaf HUERLAENDER Hellenkamp & Peter Gallin and released an album of rather harsh and weird industrial stuff ("Mirkom"). In 1994 all these efforts led to the release of his first solo CD "The Spectre Within" which received positive reviews throughout. In 1996 he presented his second CD "Deus Ex Machina" which contained music from multimedia sessions Frank had done in collaboration with a couple of experimental movie makers.

After that, the [´ramp] project became too time-consuming for him to work on new solo material for a while. "Core", his third solo album, has been released in 2001 to much acclaim from more adventureous listeners who really managed to get into Frank´s complex timbral palette. With the release of "Core" the TRANQUILLITY chapter was closed for an even longer period, so Frank has felt more and more comfortable with the new musical territories he conquered with [´ramp] for the next couple of years.
The music released under the TRANQUILLITY moniker is more focused on melodic hooklines and driving sequences. Up tempo tracks overweight soundscapes. One might say, that it shows his more traditional and mainstream, less experimental, approach.

"The eternal silence of these infinite spaces fills me with dread."
Blaise Pascal (1623 - 1662)

A collaborational project which has evolved from an early session lineup featuring Frank Makowski, Stephen Parsick and Lambert Ringlage. The nucleus Makowski / Parsick performed for more than a decade under that project name, inviting numerous guest artisans such as Jens Peschke (Kubusschnitt & Navigator), Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock or Markus Reuter (Centrozoon). The musical journey of [´ramp] started back in 1996 when the first trio teamed up for sessions, developing new techniques of performing traditional Berlin School inspired Electronic Music and pushing the boundary further into dark, ambient and experimental hunting grounds. Releases show that span from the most powerful sequencer lines of the "Nodular" release from 1998, to the all ambient release "Ceasing to Exist" from 2007. The years with [´ramp] show an enormous expand of Franks sonic palette, both in artistic and technical terms. Improvisation has become a keypoint in his work and he concentrated on different production techniques, such as massive multitrack postproduction and experimenting with loop devices. These forms of production then became standard for [´ramp]. Due to personal differences the collaboration was buried during 2008. In that period the music of [´ramp] was an evolutional ride from straight forward stepsequenced EM into the disturbing areas of Dark Ambient and Dronescape.

Frank & Dave Law
Oughtibridge Graveyard, 2001

THE SPEED OF DARK... and beyond

"So I will slow down, and think music." - Speed Of Dark - Elisabeth Moon

Franks present work marks a definite step further into other musical territories. The artistic concept is far more open now, than it was with [´ramp] in the end, leaving room for a growing number of main and side projects, with or without other individuals. While the first release of THE SPEED OF DARK in 2007 shows a definite soundtrack feel, it is no surprise that the last major project finished by the end of 2008 was a movie score ("Urban Scumbags vs. Countryside Zombies", a trash movie from the 90s reworked and released on DVD). And following his raising addiction to the world of modular synthesis, he and Torsten TMA Abel formed the project SONEMARK in 2009. SONEMARK has gained some attention for their stylistic balance from traditionally coloured EM to IDM influences, due to a radio concert and appearances in the german modular synth scene. Finally they got invited to play the 10th Anniversary issue of the Summer Inspiration Festival in 2010 without a single official release. Following live activities are planned for 2011. Beside this public appearances Frank is constantly expanding his studio work and personal style. By melting the dynamic approach of the early years with the techniques and style of drones, loop music and ambient, Franks sound has evolved to a new emotional depth. The results are haunting... and there is a lot more to come...

February 2011, Dortmund/Germany