Brannten Schnüre – ‘Sommer Im Pfirschhain’ LP
Brannten Schnüre is an experimental dark folk group out of Würzburg, Germany. Christian Schoppik composed and played all the music, Katie Rich whispers, recites and sings. Together they make astoundingly beautiful folk with a rich instrumentation leaning towards the atonal spectrum. Instrumental wanderings stand alongside Nico-esque poetry tales. Christian plays the accordeon and in some songs guitar and flute. Inspired by hierophants like Nový Svět and David Jackman, solemn song fragments (a lot of old greek rembetiko-recordings) are modified and looped, with additional instruments and voices being integrated later on. His music has been described as “surreal folkcollage” and “german hauntology”. With the emergence of Schoppik’s second project, a dada cabaret called Agnes Beil in 2010, Brannten Schnüre moved closer to the song structures of its frivolous sibling. The songs of Schoppik’s latest creation Sommer im Pfirsichhain are further accompanied by a female singing voice, lending the pieces the voluptuous quality of a stickily tense midsummer. Sommer Im Pfirschhain (Summer In The Peachgrove) is the second part of a quartet of releases. The first being Aprilnacht which got released on Sic Sic Tapes last year. Part three Geträumt hab’ ich vom Martinszug and part four will follow later. Reference points are bands like Winter Family and Twinsistermoon. Music etched on folkloric, ritual elements transferred into the 21th century. Also worth mentioning is the hand-drawn artwork which is made by artist Gwénola Carrère.
Tarotplane – ‘First’ LP
Tarotplane is the solo project of PJ Dorsey from Baltimore MD USA. Over the last few years he has been gradually crafting his debut album, appropriately called First. The end result is a tremendous album etched on the great krautrock & experimental psychedelic records from the 70s. Vintage electronic sounds are mixed with effected guitar parts. It might sound quite familiar at first, but once you enter the heart of the album it all gets spectacularely exhilarating. The true power of this album is how it swirls around and captivates you without any effort. Records such as Franco Battiato’s Pollution, Bill Holt’s Dreamies, Popol Vuh’s Affenstunde and Deuter’s D were strong influences. All of these artists use tape loops, environmental sounds, filtering and other effect processing in an exceptional way. Their desire to create their own distinct sonic world was the driving influence behind this LP. These artists never let the experimentation get in the way of creating something musical, beautiful and sonorous. First integrates those influences but it also has a more traditional psychedelic rock sound built into its sonic viewpoint. PJ took all these diverse influences and blended them together in the most seamless way possible. Something akin to a mix tape. First is a continuous flow from the start to the end. The album was originally going to be called excursions, because he would walk for hours on Baltimore’s waterfront listening to fragments of his playing, as well as samples from films and records to find a balance that worked. The ultimate goal was to make what some would call a head record. Something you could listen to on your own personal excursions that would have a sonic headspace that was distinctive and enjoyable.