„Mark Robinson is a concealed weapon. On the surface, he appears serene. Inside he is churning over new leaves, playing with all the reptiles he finds there by their tails. The ladies love him for his charm and wit, the gentlemen for his incite and candor. A seasoned performer, he knows the rules of showbiz inside and out, including the crucial "no shorts on stage".“ Calvin Johnson, K-Records
Since the early 80ies Mark Robinson is grounded in the independent scene at the US East Coast. With his label TeenBeat and his band Unrest, both founded in 1985, he lay the grounds for a singular music scene in the Washington DC area that felt closer related to the UK sound (e.g. Factory) than to friendly labels such as Dischord or Sup Pop. At the beginning of the 90ies, Unrest encountered wide success with singles on Sub Pop, Calvin Johnson‘s K Records and albums such as Imperial f.f.r.r. or Perfect Teeth (4AD). They have been touring with Stereolab and have been widely acclaimed by european music magazines.
With his solo releases Mark Robinsons combines guitar riffs and electronic drum machines with an amazing ease, putting them into a context that could be called Indietronics. But his experience and vision as a musician with more than 20 past releases and wide collaborations under his belt, contribute to the fact that the result doesn’t ressort to the usual clichee. With a critical distance from the mainstream, he creates an extremely charming outline for the revival of 80ies pop music, that leaves behind the „retro“ tag in favor of a forward-looking vision. Sophisticated pop-understatement, a clear distance to the american indie rock tradition, and his work as one of the key figures involved with one of the highest profile indie labels of the past 20 years (TeenBeat has released records by Gastr Del Sol, Eggs, Grenadine) makes him an outstanding figure.
Origami and Urbanism will be released on Tomlab, in collaboration with TeenBeat on Sept 2nd , 2003. The album has been produced by Beat Happening mastermind und K-Records owner Calvin Johnson, a long time companion and friend of Mark Robinson.