An Austrian group that bridges trip-hop, dub, acid jazz, and post-rock, Sofa Surfers were founded by a quartet of sound-obsessed Viennese instrumentalists: Wolfgang Schlögl, Markus Kienzl, Wolfgang Frisch, and Michael Holzgruber.
The group's debut single, "Sofa Rockers," emerged in 1997 and earned a remix from fellow Austrian head Richard Dorfmeister. Their debut album, Transit, received a wide release through MCA that same year. The follow-up, Cargo, was released by Klein Records in 1999, and a year later, Constructions: Sofa Surfers Remixed and Dubbed featured reworkings of their tunes by acts including Dorfmeister, Howie B, and Mad Professor.
Sofa Surfers branched into film scoring with 2000's Komm, Süsser Tod (Come Sweet Death) before returning with their third proper studio album, 2002's Encounters. It was a concept album about xenophobia and artificial borders that included guests such as folk-blues singer/songwriter Jeb Loy Nichols, Pop Group/Maffia singer Mark Stewart, reggae's Junior Delgado, and hip-hop acts Dälek and Sensational. Sofa Surfers co-wrote the score for the 2003 thriller The Poet with Marcel Barsotti and were the sole composers on the 2004 crime film Silentium before issuing the eponymous Sofa Surfers in 2005. Scores for the documentary Life in Loops (A Megacities RMX) and the detective film Der Knochenmann (The Bone Man) followed in 2006 and 2009, respectively.
The group then left Klein for Monoscope Productions, which released Blindside in 2010 as well as 2012's Superluminal and 2015's Scrambles, Anthems and Odysseys. Also in 2015, Sofa Surfers provided the music for the crime comedy Das Ewige Leben (Life Eternal). In 2017, Monoscope issued 20, a mix of original songs and reworked favorites in celebration of Sofa Surfers' 20 years together. ~ Marcy Donelson & John Bush, Rovi