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 Space Program, while researching 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), he has radically renewed his approach to music, launching the jazz-inspired and alien-sounding Space Program in 2004.
Toral's long time connection with Sei Miguel is central to the development of the Space Program. Other collaborations include 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... In 1998 he became a member of MIMEO electronic orchestra. 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. Since 2008 he directs the Space Collective, a slowly developing orchestral group.
Rafael Toral has performed throughout Europe, Canada, USA, Mexico, South Korea, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
Space Program discography:
Space (CD Staubgold, 2006; 2LP Taiga, 2007)
Space Solo 1 (CD Quecksilber, 2007; LP Taiga, 2008)
Space Elements Vol. I (CD Staubgold, 2008; LP Taiga, 2008)
Space Elements Vol. II (CD Staubgold, 2010; LP Taiga, 2010)
Space Elements Vol. III (CD Staubgold, 2011; LP Taiga, 2011)