Rafael Toral plays experimental electronic instruments. Strongly interested in phrasing, he calls his style "post-free jazz electronic music", once described as "a brand of electronic music far more visceral and emotive than that of his cerebral peers". Toral's innovative Space Program, a long research on performance possibilities, delivers music that is full of clarity, articulating silence and sound in a thoughtful, yet physical way.
Formerly known for his drone/ ambient work with guitar and electronics and acclaimed records such as Wave Field (1994) or Violence of Discovery and Calm of Acceptance (2000), in 2003 he decided to completely renew his approach to music, launching the Space Program in 2004.
In the course of his work, collaborating with other musicians has been a decisive factor in learning and development. Among these, the most important is a long time connection with Sei Miguel (since 1993), Portuguese master of avant-Jazz, a key figure in the development of the Space program. In 1998 Rafael became a member of MIMEO electronic orchestra. Often described as a 'supergroup', its other members are Keith Rowe, Thomas Lehn, Kaffe Matthews, Marcus Schmickler, Jérome Noetinger, Christian Fennesz, Peter Rehberg, Gert-Jan Prins, Cor Fuhler and Phil Durrant. Throughout his path, Rafael Toral has kept collaborating with other people, among which are Jim O'Rourke, Evan Parker, John Edwards, Joe Morris, Tatsuya Nakatani, Manuel Mota, Roger Turner, David Toop, Alvin Lucier, John Zorn, Phill Niblock, Christian Marclay, Sonic Youth, João Paulo Feliciano, Rhys Chatham, Lee Ranaldo, C Spencer Yeh, Trevor Tremaine, Dean Roberts and many others.
Rafael Toral has performed throughout Europe, Canada, USA, South Korea, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
Rafael Toral is available to perform live "Space Studies" and open to eventual collaborations. He is also available to present the Space Program as a keynote/ lecture and to discuss it with the audience.
Timeless, and at the same time totally up to the minute. Amazing.
Plenty of people say that they make creative music — Rafael Toral delivers it.
A devastatingly visceral listening experience.
Toral is looking for nothing less than a totally fresh language to work in.
Space Elements Vol. II (CD Staubgold, 2010; LP Taiga, 2010)
Space Elements Vol. I (CD Staubgold, 2008; LP Taiga, 2008)
Space Solo 1 (CD Quecksilber, 2007; LP Taiga, 2008)
Space (CD Staubgold, 2006; LP Taiga, 2007).
Harmonic Series 2 (CD Headz, 2004).
Violence of Discovery and Calm of Acceptance (CD Touch; LP Staubgold, 2001)
Aeriola Frequency (CD Perdition Plastics, 1998).
Wave Field (CD Dexter's Cigar/ Drag City, 1995/ 1998).
Sound Mind Sound Body (CD Moikai/ Drag City, 1994/ 2000).
with Sei Miguel:
Esfíngico (CD Clean Feed, 2010)
The Tone Gardens (CD Creative Sources, 2006).
Token (2CD Ananana, 1999).
Showtime (CD Fábrica de Sons, 1996).
Sight (CD Cathnor, 2007)
Lifting Concrete Lightly (3CD Serpentine Gallery Edition, 2004).
The Hands of Caravaggio (CD Erstwhile, 2002)
Electric (CD Grob, 2000).