D/B Presents: Cave & Camera @ .HBC, Berlin | Tuesday, 02.10.2012

There’s precious little information circulating on the internet about CAVE.

The band’s official biography — available to media through the Drag City record label Web site — makes no mention of who is in the group.

CAVE’s MySpace page goes one further by not even revealing how many musicians actually make up the ragtag psych-rock crew (the current answer is four).

Cave | WUJ

As it turns out, this isn’t part of some elaborate scheme to maintain anonymity. “I think it’s just more how it’s worked out,” says Rotten Milk, who has performed under the same stage name in various noise-rock projects for the better part of a decade. “I don’t think any of us have too much interest in talking about our mundane lives.”

In actuality, CAVE started as a loose collective in Columbia, Mo. in 2006 when the four musicians — Rotten Milk, Cooper Crain, Dan Browning and Rex McMurry — would occasionally get together as friends and jam. It wasn’t until the band members relocated to Chicago that the group took on a more primary focus, though even that happened largely by accident.

Cave | Hunt Like Devil

“Cooper and Rex were in a band called Warhammer 48K and they all moved [to Chicago] intending to continue with that project,” says Rotten Milk. “But then they broke up, so almost immediately people were like, ‘Let’s focus on this band instead.'”

Drawing on everything from Krautrock to classic rock to avant-garde composers like Steve Reich and Terry Riley, the group — then performing as a quintet — began honing its psychedelic, drone-heavy sound in its Humboldt Park practice space.

Cave | Adam Roberts

From the onset, repetition played an important part in the group’s development. “Someone would have an idea or a riff and we’d just play it over and over and over again,” says Rotten Milk. “Then we’d all try out different ideas … until things locked in.

There’s no one person in the group who writes the songs. The group writes the songs.” This democratic and occasionally time-consuming process helped net the trio of tunes on the band’s excellent new EP, “Pure Moods” (Drag City), a 25-minute blur of towering guitar noise, swirling feedback and punkish, sing-shout vocals.

Cave | The Ride

But even though the lyrics might be easier to discern than they were on last year’s “Psychic Psummer,” listeners still shouldn’t put too much stock in the band’s words. “None of the words in our songs have a great, underlying meaning to me,” says Rotten Milk. “They usually just start as sounds, and some of those sounds become words over time. It’s definitely more of a textural element.” (Text: Andy Downing, Chicago Tribune)

Dubbed “Krautrock Guerilla”, the Berlin-based trio Camera has played with Krautrock legends Michael Rother and Dieter Moebius and performed at the German Film Prize and Echo Awards ceremonies. And in August 2012, as unlikely as it may once have seemed, their debut album will be released. A lot has been going on with the three boys. One thing at a time, however.

Camera | Ausland

Let us start with an accolade: first proffered by no lesser figure than Michael Rother (NEU!, Harmonia), who played a number of shows together with the Camera boys. Further proof that Camera hit the genuine Krautrock nerve with their music was a joint gig with Rother and his old comrade Dieter Moebius (Cluster, Harmonia).

The pioneers of 40 years ago have taken note of CameraÕs qualities, both supporting and promoting them. And what of the “Krautrock Guerilla” epithet? Well, Camera like nothing better than playing spontaneous concerts in public spaces, without permission of course (to be watched on YouTube et al.).

Camera | Performing with Michael Rother and Dieter Moebius

Seeing Camera live for the first time occurs less commonly in a concert hall than in an unexpected, surprising location: an underground station in the middle of the night, an underpass or even public toilets.

The threesome set up their minimalist drum kit (snare, floor tom, cymbals and headless tambourine) and two amplifiers, plug in their guitars and synthesizer and off they go. Much to the delight of the audience. Less so in the case of guardians of the law …

Camera | Performing in a Berlin subway station

Another of Camera’s specialities is to sneak their way into highly official after show parties (German Film Prize, Echo Awards etc.), arrange their portable equipment in a matter of minutes and play for as long as it takes for the security to realize they are not part of the official programme.

They actually performed in the gentlemen’s toilets at this year’s Echo Awards. This is their way of unleashing themselves on an unprejudiced, unprepared audience, meeting with an enthusiastic response.

This event is highly recommended by Digital in Berlin! We are giving away 2 x 2 tickets. Just send a mail to win@digitalinberlin.de with “Cave & Camera” as the subject.

Cave & Camera  LIVE
presented by deli.kolder, amStart & D/B

Dj: Julie Rox

Tuesday, 02 October 2012 | 21:00 CET
.HBC | Karl-Liebknecht-Straße 9 | 10178 Berlin/Mitte

myspace.com/realreelpro | bureau-b.com/camera | hbc-berlin.de