hand aufs herz

April 11, 2013

not sure if i agree on the line regarding “bijoux de chez chanel”… but it is one of the nicest songs of late which is basically a big fuck you while being irrestistibly charming. so let me have love, joy, laughs and then i want to die with my hand on my heart… enjoy!

ZAZ “je veux”

zaz

oldschool

April 10, 2013

Image

picture by GGG. thank you. yeah, oldshool…

dance into 2013

January 2, 2013

Image

i actually was dancing into the new year. or shuffling. mainly to jeff buckley. but that could lead to misunderstandings, lyrically. and i certainly do not dare to post luc van acker. yet. (yeah yeah: upside down and inside out)

therefore here one of these beautiful pieces of music i do not get tired of. a good way to start a new year, surely. and yes, i danced also to this one. slow. reminiscing.

doctor rockit “café de flore”

dooh!

January 2, 2013

yes, i am suprised myself. it has been a long time. but then:

  • the year-end statistics show an interest for this blog – even dormant
  • i need to get off my lazy ass and stop watching too much tv
  • jeff mills (and to a degree derrick may) kind of threw the gauntlet in an interview with RA. well, there is a challenge. not sure if i will take it on – but it got me thinking…
  • that fruity program on my fruity computer keeps on doing funny things, i.e. i am not sure what happens, but it does shuffle my music around in funny ways. i realized it is inspiring, though.
  • and yes, it might help me sort certain things out. or not. we will see
  • and there is still a lot of music that deserves to be heard

then please be aware that i will not be able to fulfill any (re-up) requests, as i do not have access to my archive. i am also a little bit wary of posting music, as i’ve seen that in the last year many music blogs got into trouble… (although i had more problems with pictures).

well, then let’s see what this year will bring!

insert: late summer – early fall

September 11, 2011

it is getting darker earlier…

summer isn’t gone yet, but there is already regret – but i am also looking forward to the coloured leaves and the bittersweet melancholy in a few weeks to come. for all those who want to be well prepared, and because it fits the mood and because these artists only came up lately on my radar and beacuse they’re really ggood here 2 ideas what to listen to:

gisbert zu knyphausen . hurra! hurra! so nicht.

already published last year – but as mentioned above only came up now on my radar. very nice record. and it strongly reminds me of jean guidoni’s record. not afraid to be edgy, to be soft- euphoric melancholy, i guess. and the lyrics are very good, too.

and anybody rhyming melancholie to fick dich ins knie has my appreciation….

moritz krämer. wir können nix dafür

so – and for all thinking this is too much mädchenmusik, her some gay guitars, yeah

anajo – mädchenmusik

insert: late summer mix

September 10, 2011

as summer is still there – but with a hint of colder days to come – here a mix to prolonge the easy feel of long days in the heat and warm nights outside – mixed by mr steve malenka as a promomix you can get it here (top of the page *the essential sounds…”).

Enjoy!

malenka producers

goddess. 300.

August 29, 2011

because it is post number 300, and because it does fit to the following post, and because i always wanted to post it and never found the right spot which is silly because as A once observed so very correctly: nina simone always works.

nina simone does indeed always works for me: soothing and stimulating, soft and raw, exciting and lazy – her music makes me feel good, consoles me at times and questions me at others. this shall be reason number one calling her a goddess.

this might be the right moment to clarify that a) i do have a rather extensive pantheon of goddesses and gods in my musical pantheon, and b) music isn’t my religion. just a basic need.

as for reason number 2: ms nina simone is frequently referred to as the high priestess of soul. to set that off i prefer her calling a goddess. i just don’t see her as a priestess (even less a high priestess). for me her music isn’t about adhering (as i imagine a priestess would do) but about exploring. life. taking all what she sees fit from various styles, genres, moods, and feels. which would seem erratic if it would not be unified and given sense by her. very much a goddess in her musical universe.

as for the soul part: i have my nina simone vinyl between old blues and some of my favourite jazz (although i’m always tempted to wedge baltimore somewhere near sade). as much as i acknowldege that soul-music does define a ceratin genre, i do find nina simone’s music is not slotting nicely into the soul-as-genre-slot. there is so much more (the aforementioned blues and soul just being some other parts).

understanding soul not as a genre but as music emotionally and spiritually touching her music is of course soul music.

for yout to sample some of the variety of her musical expression i propose 3 different flavours from different times and places – all live. enjoy!

the great show of nina simone live in paris, ripped from vinyl as 4 tracks (each side as one track)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nina Simone live at Drury Lane 1977 (bootleg) – this comes via the BigO – many many thanks for sharing this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Madame Nina Simone – Nina Simone live at the Jazzfestival Montreux in 1990 (bootleg). not really sure where i got this from at the time – thanks to the anonymus uploader. unfortunately the last track is not complete… if someone would like to share the complete version: yes, please.

actualité: does anybody know any jokes?

August 22, 2011

n and me listening recently to this record – and well, it might be from the early 80s, but…

take also note of the weatherman…

if in doubt…

August 2, 2011

Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Das Zaudern und den Zorn

Im Zweifel fürs Zerreißen

Der eigenen Uniform
Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Und für die Pubertät

Im Zweifel gegen Zweisamkeit

Und Normativität

Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Und gegen allen Zwang

im Zweifel für den Teufel

Und den zügellosen Drang
Im Zweifel für die Bitterkeit

Und meine heißen Tränen

Bleiern wird mir meine Zeit

Und doch muss ich erwähnen:

Im Zweifel für Ziellosigkeit

Ihr Menschen, hört mich rufen!

Im Zweifel für Zerwürfnisse

Und für die Zwischenstufen

Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Das Zaudern und den Zorn

Im Zweifel fürs Zerreißen

Der eigenen Uniform

Im Zweifel für Verzärtelung

Und für meinen Knacks

Für die äußerste Zerbrechlichkeit

Für einen Willen wie aus Wachs
Im Zweifel für die Zwitterwesen

Aus weit entfernten Sphären

Im Zweifel fürs Erzittern

Beim Anblick der Chimären
Im Zweifel für die Bitterkeit

Und meine heißen Tränen

Bleiern wird mir meine Zeit

Mir bleibt noch zu erwähnen:
Im Zweifel für Ziellosigkeit

Ihr Menschen, hört mich rufen!

Im Zweifel für Zerwürfnisse

Und für die Zwischenstufen
Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Das Zaudern und den Zorn

Im Zweifel fürs Zerreißen

Der eigenen Uniform
Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Und die Unfassbarkeit

Für die innere Zerknirschung

Wenn man die Zähne zeigt
Im Zweifel fürs Zusammenklappen

Vor gesamtem Saal

Mein Leben wird Zerrüttung

Meine Existenz Skandal
Im Zweifel für die Bitterkeit

Und meine heißen Tränen

Bleiern wird mir meine Zeit

Und doch muss ich erwähnen:
Im Zweifel für Ziellosigkeit

Ihr Menschen, hört mich rufen!

Im Zweifel für Zerwürfnisse

Und für die Zwischenstufen
Im Zweifel für den Zweifel

Das Zaudern und den Zorn

Im Zweifel fürs Zerreißen

Der eigenen Uniform

tocotronic im zweifel für den zweifel
background: tocotronic used to play die grossen weissen vögel (from der abendstern) by ingrid caven after their shows. this did bring some people to listen to ingrid caven and got the attention of the management of ingrid caven. contacts were made and this somehow led to the above video.

der abendstern

July 29, 2011

thinking of ingrid caven‘s record der abendstern i always hear that litte voice in my head saying c’est quand-même très allemand. to say it in english: for me this seems to be her most german record. which has nothing to do with the lyrics being in german. it’s the music.

the music taps deeply into the tradion of german popular song of the 60’s and 70’s. it does border on the cheesy – and that is why i suspect that i hear that french voice, for i believe for a french, or more general, any non-german-speaking listener this record could indeed be mistaken as cheesy.

but then maybe not, because there are certain indications that it has to be listened to differently, the most obvious for any listener being her voice. this voice is just too good. there is a gap between the sweet pleasent- and pleasingness of this music and this strong artistic voice going way beyond of what is expected to sing such songs. suspicion should also arise as by closer listening the music does reveal itself as too clever – there are certain manierisms, there is a certain feeling of too much, of too well done.

then there is the extra-musical context: why would a woman with known association to the cultural avantgarde of germany and france do a record full of songs on the simpler side of german schlager? the answer is easy: she didn’t.

on this record ingrid caven does the same as ringsgwandl does on trulla! trulla!: use the music. use the music to create certain moods, feelings, and memories of germany in the 60’s and 70’s, the bundesrepublik, to support the lyrics. and the lyrics are anything but simple and cheesy.

so it might be not ingrid caven’s most german record, but her most fassbinderian record. as fassbinder captured in his films the atmosphere of the bundesrepublik through the visual, so much that at times one believes to smell it, for the purpose to heighten the impact of his sharp analysis of this germany executed through the script and the dialogues, ingrid caven on der abendstern uses the music to create a germany which tried to hide all the things she sings about.

so i propose you do have a listen for yourself and find out if you can actually smell it. enjoy.

trulla! trulla!

July 26, 2011

crazy, queer and straight. all check. the same again but oh so different.

so let me introduce you to ringsgwandl. for the queer factor you might visit his website – already the picture greeting the visitor should put a smile on your face. lovely.
and listening to his music one must conclude that he is barking, eeeer, squealing mad. of course as brigitte fontaine he uses craziness as a strategy, but its use differs and so does his work.

here again the attitude towards music is different. it is not change from within (ingrid caven) or the nearly scientific exploration of an universe, its frontiers and the places beyond (brigitte fontaine). ringsgwandl uses music to make a point, to illustrate. to the snobbish bourgeois like me this utilitarian attitude comes across as quite brutal, as one is taken on a wild ride from pop-reggae to heavy metal crossed with bavarian folk music (well, it’s rather blues rock, but the result is still vile) to lounge/ cocktail music to hysterical folk songs.

but then again many artists, especially the ones who are usually seen as mainly “entertaining” take on the task to change feel and mood with every song. ringsgwandl takes this to an extreme, although in his live shows this is softened as there are also long stretches of spoken word, or more precise, comedy.

and here it becomes interesting. concerning the reception of his music, ringsgwandl is usually not situated within a primarily musical universe, but within the universe of comedy. putting his work in this context makes sense, as he clearly utilizes music to serve his lyrics, his stories, his expression (and is funny while doing it). but do we not expect self-expression from every artist? so it might be the humor which does put him in the comedy context. and yes, it is about humor and comedy, although as a necessity rather than a goal in itself. a necessity to season the acidity of his observations and comments so they become digestible. this gives me the idea that humor – too much humor – is nothing that goes well with the reception of music as music.

so different genres allow for certain ways of expression, have certain rules of utilizing music. regulating how much this utilizing is made transparent or disappears behind layers of…art.

and the respect or disrespect of such rules by artists seem to strongly influence our perception of an artist’s work. often regrettably so, as the focus is then rather on the observation of lines drawn by convention, diverting from other, might more interesting, fruitful point of views. of course this also helps to tame the beast art, or more specifically, music can be. to protect us from the disturbing and annoying effects if we would have to listen to it without such guidelines. and here we come full circle to the artist’s strategy to declare insanity – a buffer in its reception, to soften the impact for the listener – and therefore to give the artist in this deal more freedom.

in the case of ringsgwandl i propose to listen to him as one of the heirs of early 20th century cabaret. not interested in following it’s style or aesthetic, but by taking a certain attitude: wanting to entertain, but entertain on his own terms, experimenting, not shying away of coming across eventually as silly, pretentious or…trulla trulla.

so he might be after all not that different from quite a number of artists in previous and following posts.

so, if i haven’t you completely scared off i propose you have an earful of trulla! trulla!, ripped chuckling from vinyl. enjoy!

folle

July 25, 2011

most texts about her do start with mentioning that she is “folle”, as she frequently describes herself as such. so, mrs brigitte fontaine is crazy, trulla trulla, just that you know.
and yes, “queer rooted in the straight” of my previous post was a reference to her (you didn’t think of etienne daho, did you?). in the context of the last post it sounded slightly negative, due to my frustration, but not doing justice to brigitte fontaine’s amazing work.
queer it is, she is, in many ways, if queer stands for transgressing, for not fulfilling expectations, for challenging, for being and doing outside and across categories.
and the above she does, outside of music – and musically she is most definitely queer. music oscillating between the (seemingly) pleasant song and irritating sonic structures.


i do find it very interesting to post this in the context of an artist like ingrid caven, as the approach to music is interesting in its difference. ingrid caven is working within a more or less clearly defined musical space, adapting and expanding this space from within. usually she worked with the same people over the years – trusted partners. it gives her musical universe seen from that viewpoint an intimacy. this might be in contrast to her career in film where by default there are usually a lot more people involved.
brigitte fontaine on the other hand explodes the musical and works across the board with musicians from all corners. it seems to me she worked with the majority of french musicians and did not stop there, recording an entire album with the art ensemble of chicago, and also with sonic youth and the gotan project (allright, they’re partly french – and here would be a nice line to touch el arab, but that will be another story for another day…) and her sister grace jones. it is to note though that some names appear constantly – most notably her man areski belkacem (a nice beard at the time, too).
in contrast she did record hardly anything in the 1980s, but focused on theater (ha! she did play in a production of genet’s les bonnes) and her writing, but became again musically very active and sucessfull in the last good ten years.

as an introduction to her work i propose from 1974 l’incendie. this is one of her less obviously strange records. not completely incidentally it also seems that this is the only one out of print, although it seems that the label does reissue the vinyl occasionally. a little bit naïve i first thought i post some more vinyls of hers from the 70s, which i own due to the generous M H, but i did underestimate badly brigitte fontaine’s status as cultural icon: most of her work is easily accessible / obtainable.

l’incendie is at first listen a spaced out mediterranean folk record. then one notices the whispering, and discreet layers of patterns and loops, revealing structures underneath. it’s folktronica very much avant la lettre…
and it has the notable guest appearance of guem, as well as one of the most infectious bass lines i know. just check out the second song – and would then someone please do a remix and just stretch that baseline into infinity…
and then there is also the lyrical side. i’m not really sure, but there seems to be a direct connection between the innocence of the melody and the strangeness of the lyrics.
so this record is like a leftfield perfume: layers of different impressions, seemingly at first contradictory, then falling into place and starting to scintillate, creating its own fascinating universe.

l’incendie, ripped with fascination from vinyl, you can get here. do enjoy!

and for yet another side:

insert: revelation – hope

July 21, 2011

these sexy pointy shoes on which you spent a fortune on your naked feet, these loose, well worn jeans that tend to slide down your hips, the shirt in cold blue and hot red that makes your tanned face glow, a pack of cigarettes in the breast pocket and one cigarette in the corner of your mouth, your hair sticking up and out, the windows down, all four of them, smelling the salty breeze of the ocean, driving along in the glare of the late summer sun…and jean guidoni on the stereo…

revelation:

1978: Un soir, il assiste à la dernière de Ingrid Caven au Pigall’s. C’est pour lui la révélation.

Jean Guidoni: “Pour la première fois j’ai compris que l’on pouvait tout dire en chansons”.

(excerpt from www.jeanguidoni.com)

1978: one evening, he is witnessing ingrid caven au pigall’s. it is his revelation.

jean guidoni: “for the first time i understood that everything can be said in songs”.

hope:

there was a time i was all chanson-ed out – ferré became too heavy, most others seemed all too old fashioned, not contemporary enough – and it was just not gay enough, anyways. yes, there was a moment it got to me, as i was listening to all these songs depicting life in so many facettes, in any way thinkable – but with the total abscence of the queer. well, maybe not, but at the time it seemed all the queerness was firmly rooted in straightness…

months later i was researching exactly this: queer music (or even more difficult: gay and lesbian sounds that relate directly to my experiences without me having to make the translation, having to read sub-texts – one day i might expand on this topic) in different european countries  i came across jean guidoni. and was wondering why nobody ever told me about him. so i ordered from the available cd’s one of the more recent ones- well, the one with the nicest cover. and – he gave me hope again for the french chanson. of course rooted in the tradition of it (the various traditions, to be more precise) there is an easy musical and lyrical openness to it that makes it very fresh and exciting. multi-layered, deep but also pop, going into many directions withouth loosing itself. a pleasure. he is one of the artists that show that this tradition of the song can be still relevant.

i am mainly talking about 2 of his more recent records (i am still looking for the older work on vinyl).

and i always think of them as a pair – the darker trapèze (yes, the one with the nicer cover) and the musically not that different, but by mood far more upbeat la pointe rouge.

and yes, like ingrid caven he is updating, better: adapting a tradition in his unique way, not insulting the listener by not saying what also should be said in song.

paris 1978

July 20, 2011

au pigall’s (her first record) was the first record i heard by ingrid caven. H played it to me late one night in his high, high, high ceilinged appartment. and yes, that night i also learned that H met brad davis on a train crossing france. a night-train, if i remember correctly. yes, there was envy on my side – although i guess i would have gone for the other one…the facial hair-thing, i know. years later i did spend 2 nights with brad davis in some manner of speaking.

 

i knew of ingrid caven, as C introduced me to daniel schmid’s and rainer werner fassbinder’s work (and the french and the german reiser and so much more…) many years before when i was still in my teens. funny enough C did meet fassbinder in munich when he studied there. contrary to the above story i do not know what “meeting” here meant.

but i have to admit that ingrid caven never fully registered with me. not until i saw her singing brahm’s lullaby in hors saison by daniel schmid. my mother sung it to me, too. giving this, and my liking at the time of exactly these places as shown in the movie (old hotels with many ghosts in the alps) the scene really stuck with me. so this is the moment i became consciously aware of her. and yes, the movie is very beautiful.

as it turned out it was difficult to impossible to find her records. well, it still isn’t easy to find her records as they are all out of print. and over the years ingrid caven somehow disappeared again from my radar….until i found a copy of chambre 1050. and then i had a request for some more caven. yes, this was quite a long time ago. but eventually i got around to ask H for his copy to make rip. funny thing is that not a week later i did find a copy for myself at a local thrift store. to my pleasure this particular streak of luck continued. this just as an outlook of posts to come…

breathless. that’s the word that springs to my mind listening to this record. certain songs leave me breathless. one would expect the singer to become breathless with these songs, but no, it is the listener. so, enjoy a great voice under full control by a great singer on au pigall’s, ripped lovingly from vinyl. fomr H’s copy, of course. take a deep breath and enjoy.

estate – expanded

July 17, 2011

as i have been brushing over a few thing in my second last post, here the expanded version – with some extras…

to be precise: the young gods have not only a new record called “everbody knows” which is highly recommended, they’re also touring europe. more information you’ll find on their website. then they also issued a limited edition box containing 3 cds and 3 dvds, documenting 3 live performances: griots and the young gods at the les eurockeenes festival in belfort, the concert at the rote fabrik in zürich from their super ready / fragmente tour, and their concert at the jazzfestival montreux with the lausanne sinfonietta – this was one of 2 evenings in montreux celebrating 20 years of the young gods . the night before was very good as well, and the night before that jamie lidell and underworld played – yep, when the jazz festival montreux’s programmation was still interesting… so, in honour of all these memories i decided to put up the live recording form the rote fabrik from the limited edition box – especially since it contains that magnificient version of “envoyé”. enjoy. and go see them live… or buy at least a t-shirt….

as for adriana calcanhotto – i was very charmed by seeing her live. it also came somewhat as a suprise, as her older work is as much as i know it, hm, singer / songwriter. but her new record “o micròbio do samba” is – yes, her take on samba. and i just like her way of making music – very focused, at times one could nearly mistake it as shy, but also at times rather cheeky, using little machines that make squeaky noises, using coffee cups and spoons as acoustic support and therefore expanding discreetly her and our acoustic universe. for a taste how that sounds and some more information you can visit her homepage. and there was this truly beautiful and intimate moment when she sang “vambora” and the crowd gently sang along…

thinking of her adriana calcanhotto’s take on samba i thought it nice to give you another take on samba. also very relaxed, very cocktail hour, very smooth. roughly 50 years ago (1962), stan getz and charlie byrd recorded their take on “fresh, contemporary sounds from modern brazilian folk music”. i do wonder how it sounded to the ears of america back in the days…

also nice to note that the copy i found has some scribbling on the front – there is a womens name. stroke through, and below “mama, please (gell – which i’m unable to translate) it is my favourite record”. it does not exactly sound like a dedication on a gift – rather like the daughter (?) might left this record with her mother – telling her not to give it / throw it away….? yeah, used records have an additional layer of stories to them… and then i sometimes imagine all these possibilities….

however – it is not a bad choice for a favourite record. it is surly a very good choice for a favourite summer record. “jazz samba” by stan getz and charlie byrd you can get here. ripped very relaxed from vinyl…

then i would like to remind you of yannick délez. on his website you can listen to some pieces of his new record “boréales” (under “mp3″). try the piece called “boréales”. beautiful. if you do not feel refreshed listening to this… this is actually the music i always hope some neighbour would play very loud in summer…. opened windows… and this music drifting in… with the wind that is blowing the long white curtains… and i would slowly wake up… but no, it is me that has to get up, visit the bathroom, search for the cd, start all the machines and hit play. and then i’m usually in the mood for a coffee. and then i’m not sure my neighbours do appreciate…

to round this expanded version up – and as i still haven’t found that summer mix for 2011 i was thinking of a mix from ages ago – at the time it was rather an all year round mix. or better: part of a collection of mixes i dearly loved. too bad most of them got stolen at the main station in amsterdam. shouldn’t have let them out of my eyes… so imagine my delight – and this is one of the many reasons to love the net – i did find them, all of them, ready to listen to again. propelling me back to san franciso in 1991 to josé and atul and parties and discussions and excitement and just a very good time. there is indeed an archive with tons of mixes form this period: eze skankin mixtapes.

there is really a lot – so i do recommend garth (“no rest for the wicked” i once owned), and of course jenö. couldn’t get enough of “house reality” and “inside the mind”. being never really sure which one i preferred. you should also check out the rockers hifi live tape. and my favourite is the live recording from dub tribe. awesome. just check out the version of “mother earth” on side 2. energetic and tribal and kicking and just making me bounce around. and this at my age.

i saved one for me from these times familiar names (although it has been 2 years later, i believe – but back in sf): john howard. funny enough it was him in that record shop selling my his tape – this i realized only when i saw him later in my stay spinning… made it clear why he was so enthusiastic about this mix tape. but in all fairness: i loved it, too. as for the cover – well, not exactly my thing… and it still gives me good vibes… get it here. ripped from tape – and yes, one hears it has played many times, i.e. the quality is, eeer, fluctuating. funny enough this is one of the few i still have the original – and it is one not being posted on ezeskankin.

bonus!

on the above tape is one of these tracks i was once obsessed with, so to speak (luckily these obsessions come and most importantly also go rather quickly. maybe because there is this overpowering general obsession for music). and yes, me still likes these drums. and since to my surprise i found it very quickly in my at the moment not organized vinyls here as a bonus the original and 8 (eight – it is a double 12″) mixes of johnny dangerous‘ “father in heaven”. now pray…


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