Kaufmann Frust are a fourpiece from Stuttgart/Berlin. Their sound takes cues from a variety of genres, postpunk, slowcore and post-rock being the most audible in a way that allows flickering associations with bands like Codein or Slint. Sometimes slomo and downbeat, sometimes propulsive and noisey, never missing a close dance with big pop moments. Over Layers of nifty surf guitars drifting into post-rock and intricate drum patterns, vocals are spun telling stories of the isolation and angst of modern living. There are a few bands that manage to capture the tristesse of our time and turn it into such a passionate manifestation on record and into an almost joyful celebration of catharsis on stage. Founded in 2013 and performing live since 2014, Kaufmann Frust have played concerts all over Germany, Shows in France and in the UK. After the 5-song EP “Unter den Augen”, which has been released through the Label “Chicos Records” by Producer Ralv Milberg, the band recorded their full-length debut “Aus Wachs” in extensive and nerve-racking live sessions at the Milberg Studios. The record now has been released through My Favourite Chords/Broken Silence on October 19th 2018 and is yet handled to be one of the most urgent and uncompromissing records of the year 2018.
Starting off in an Icelandic, punk-hardcore band Muck, Indridi has become an enchanting solo artist that creates a calming aura with his music. Listening to his tunes feels like you’re relaxed on a beach in a hammock, or (more likely!) looking out at a scene of mountains in bright, white snow. With a delicate voice and soft guitar, Indridi started with his 2016 debut Makril. Now having developed his new album ding ding, released earlier this year, he states that the central themes are “family matters, death, depression, love and substance abuse for the most part”. Indridi also integrates a very unique soundscape into his music, including unpredictable elements like throat singing, Icelandic drug slang and theremin-led soundscapes. From his album ding ding’s opening song “Amma”, where his guitar almost mimics steel-pan sounds, to the poetical December, Indridi seems to really hit home with the beauty of both his voice and lyrics. Recording between Reykjavik and Berlin, Indridi has collaborated with many up-and-comers in Iceland and Germany, including musicians/recordists Tumi Árnason and Albert Finnbogason, and Icelandic super-drummer Magnús Trygvason Eliassen. Uncompromised honesty, unflinching delivery, intimate and intensely personal, Indridi is bound to blow you away with his soft vocals and wonderful sounds.
A Berlin-residing Icelander, Hekla’s sparse, delicate, fractal music exists within these two worlds: dark and magical as Iceland’s permanight folklore; and (though beatless) as deeply sonic and intense as Berlin’s electronic scene. A long-term scholar of solo theremin, Hekla (shortened from her own name Hekla Magnúsdóttir) uses her instrument as an otherworldly and highly evocative Siren-call. A spectral, wailing, howling, lamenting yearning second-voice that underpins a soft vocal delivery, as if her studio had been haunted with a chorus of ghostly backing singers. While a handful of reference points share a similar ground to Á – Colleen’s interplay of voice and instrumentation; the richly immersive filmscore work of sadly passed fellow Icelander Jóhann Jóhannsson’s; “grandmother of theremin” Clara Rockmore’s close relationship with such a singular instrument; Julia Holter’s intelligent and classically-aligned songwriting – Hekla’s music still exists singularly. A one-off talent, emerging from no particular scene, ascribing to no particular rules. As a creative tool, the theremin – bizarre, unique, rarely heard – can be expressive, intuitive and highly adaptable. In Hekla’s hands, her instrument covers an enormous range, from skittering birdsong of high frequency chirrups and chirps, to grinding, tectonic sub-bass. We are given the throbbing, apocalyptic dread of ‘Muddle’ and the baroque beauty of traditional Icelandic hymn ‘Heyr Himna Smi∂ur’ in sequential tracks on the album’s a-side. Appropriately, she also writes that the album title – Á – is similarly multifaceted in her native Icelandic: “a river is an á and also it means ouch like when you hurt yourself, and also when you put something on top of something you put it á (on) something.”
Kaufmann Frust / Hekla / Indridi
Thursday, 13th December 2018 | Doors 19:00 CET | Starts 20:00 CET
Kantine am Berghain | Am Wriezener Bahnhof | 10243 Berlin
Photo © Verena Ecker