He has produced more than 1000 records and CDs. But the hectic pace of business seems to leave no trace on his face. Manfred Eicher is the poet among the record company owners. The Swiss Peter Guyer and Norbert Wiedmer have dedicated a meditative documentary to him and his musicians - sensitive and precise, highly musical and building entirely on the power of the images.
The label Manfred Eicher founded in 1969 is called "Edition of Comtemporary Music" or "ECM" for short. Among lovers of artists from the border area between classical music and jazz, ECM has an excellent sound. But even those who didn't know what to do with the abbreviation so far have the great opportunity to get to know musicians in this film who will keep him busy. Sounds and Silence introduces artists whose musical experiments do not deter but attract. Anyone who imagined contemporary music to be wild free jazz, weird soundscapes or disharmonic "new music" will be disabused. Manfred Eicher only produced recordings that he wanted to hear himself. Not a bad criterion for a label that is completely dedicated to music for which you have to take your time.
Making the sound "shine" - this is how Manfred Eicher describes his concern.
Just as the music is a silent dialogue, so are the close-ups and cuts. One of the most haunting scenes is when two musicians communicate with each other via their instruments. The cellist Anja Lechner and the bandoneon player Dino Soluzzi, for example, or Anouar Brahem, virtuoso on the oud, a short-necked lute from the Mediterranean region, also in duo with a bandoneonist. There it is again what Manfred Eicher loves so much: the glow of the sound - and of the eyes.