Wednesday, September 1, 2010
ssg special - kettenkarussell
This one has been a long time coming. Last year some time, Chris passed me a link to a live set by a duo called kettenkarussell, who the Sherburnator had been talking about on his blog, as I recall. The set in question, which, hopefully, many of you have heard (please remedy this if not!) was pure magic.
I love microhouse. But sometimes, it doesn't quite deliver the goods: My My at their best were brilliant but, for me, at times, festooned their tracks with too many bells and whistles. Entre Lee Jones' solo album, which still stands up. Seriously, get it, or get it out (if you've got it) and give it a rub/spin. But but but: the problem was always one of time. On the one hand, microhouse is all about the interacting intrications, the way a melody sets of FX ripples, becomes a texture through modulation, fades into a sympathetic rhythm, etc, until the whole musical assembly turns into a mobile liquid. As a musical practice, it's a kind of cloudshaping. On the other hand, for this effect to fully take hold, you need a time/space canvas that's really, really big. Sky big. This is part of the reason why, for me, RV's best tracks on Vasco or The au Harem... or Bruno Pronsato's Make Up, Break Up work so well. Such origami (aura[l]-gami?) needs time to (un)fold in all its intricacies. The trouble is that all that time taxes the listener, and unless your rhythms, textures and melodic motifs build, shift and morph in sufficiently engaging ways - it's boring. In most cases, I would rather watch the clouds fucking.
kettenkarussell are, for me, one of the few duos really doing justice to the creative possibilities of the microhouse microverse. They not only pull off the requisite formulas and push all the right buttons, they add a whole dark thicket full of animated organic sounds, wind up dolls (perhaps demonically possessed, be careful!) and forest clearings filled with soft, shining, melodic lights... fairies? I'm not sure... more than anything, the duo create an intense, dense, total mood that fills their enormous canvas, but one that never ever feels 'stuck', hurried, or sluggish. They add something that is inimitably their own. We are really, really happy to get this mix so we can share it with you. I hope you love it - I do.
If you're in the area, kettenkarussell are playing at oe, which Konstantin describes as 'a small festival more like a privat party on a little danish island'. Check here for details.
For those of the Isles, on September the 17th KK are also playing at the alphaville festival, which will be held at Whitechapel Gallery in London'. Details.
And now, nuff gabbing, here it is. Enjoy!