Daniel Buess Obituary

Daniel Buess is dead. My personal friend and musical collaborator disappeared on February 7 in his hometown of Basel, Switzerland in the early morning after a night of partying. After more than a month, an agonising period for his life partner, Eli, as well as for his friends and family, his body was found in the river Rhine on March 10. At the time of writing the circumstances of his death are still unclear and it remains to be seen if the results of an autopsy will shed light on the darkness surrounding his disappearance.

Daniel was an exceptional drummer, a master of intensification, and he employed his skills both in the context of ‘serious’ music as well as underground noise, from the Ensemble Phoenix, to 16-17, Buggatronic, Cortex, Mir and collaborations with musicians such as Knut Remond, Kasper T. Toeplitz, Zbigniew Karkowski and many others.

I was lucky enough to have played with him twice as Cortex, once at the Praxis 20 years party in Basel in 2012 and once, again in Basel, in 2014. Daniel also played at other Praxis label nights both in Basel and Berlin, solo as Cortex, most recently at the 2013 Datacide Thirteen release party and conference in Berlin.

Daniel appeared in the Praxis universe when he got involved with the 1999 release of 16-17 “Mechanophobia”, where his drumming was sampled and used for the beats. Around this time, fruitful collaborations with Alex Buess began, and one shape they took was the project named Cortex which eventually materialised on vinyl as Praxis 48 – “Vacuum Theory”. I had worked with Alex on numerous records and collaborations since the 80s and I was very happy to be able to release the record.

Since then there had been talk about putting out more material, and finally an LP with one side each by the two Buess’ was finalised and cut in early February 2016. We are currently expecting test pressings and plan to have the final LPs published in May.

No one would have expected this to become a posthumous release for Daniel, and while it is with great sadness that we have to acknowledge this fact we are proud to be releasing a piece that will contribute to his legacy and provide inspiration to others.

We miss you!


A commemorative event will be held on March 21, 7pm at Gare du Nord, Basel. The event is public and Ensemble Phoenix will be playing a concert. Further details will be announced.

Below you find:
– Preview of Daniel’s side of the next Praxis record
– Videos of two performances at JOLT TERRAINS, incl. the full Cortex gig with Stelarc and a 3 minute excerpt of Buggatronic, filmed 11/12-11-2011
– Link to free download of the Praxis 48 – Cortex: Vacuum Theory via bandcamp

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