Concert

Das ist der Sound für die echten Männer
Die das hier hören wenn sie Pressluft hämmern
Für Nutten und Hausfrauen …
(K.I.Z./ Urlaub fürs Gehirn)

Imagine Lola dancing to these lyrics and you have a brief idea of us at Berlin Festival 2014….

The Berlin Festival is a part of the annual Berlin Music Week. Previously situated at the areal of the Tempelhofer Flughafen for the past few years the festival now moved to the Arena Park in Friedrichshain where locations like the Badeschiff/ Glashaus/ Club der Visionäre and White Trash Fast Food formed together the new festival areal. Additionally an Open Air Hip Hop stage was built up in front of White Trash Fast Food surrounded by different food and drink stands and an Art Village with a free hug stage/ a paint club/ a mini disco/ a market place and more.

Friday night –  truly a disappointment for us. The festival areal was not set up. People with matching wristbands seemed slightly lost on their way from one club to another. After the bar guy disclosed us he was a hooker and only costs 50 Euros we decided to spend some time in front of the restrooms – for the rest of the night. The way home in a shopping trolley might have been the most fun part of the evening/ morning.

Saturday started of with super sunny weather. Equipped with bikes and a backpack we started into day 2. The whole area had become one place. One entrance and one exit.
First enjoying Magda while lying in sun chairs at Badeschiff was a great start. Followed by the Crystal Fighters. BÄÄÄM. What a party – what a show. The Arena was sweating like hell. But in the end a little irritation. Due to the schedule seven more minutes to play: no encore, no show off again, they were just gone.
A little break brought us to a little park side close by. Just to tell how cool Berlin is: While lying in the grass suddenly a firefighter truck appears behind us through the trees. Silently rolling down to a container for barbecue leftovers. Six firefighter get of the truck, one flips his cigarette into the container before they extinguish the fire that had been smoking in there for quite a while. As fast as they appeared they are gone again.
Back at the festival we saw super cool Bombay Bicycle Club which we had to leave a little earlier to see HVOB who heated up the crowd in the already cooking Glashaus. Next up the Editors. A long day for us ended up with Zoot Woman and my very very euphoric happy company who took me to McDonalds and bought me a Happy Meal before we went to bed.

Good morning Sunday. If you think going to a day festival is less exhausting than a proper festival with camping you are wrong. A late breakfast and we made it to the festival ground by 2pm. Alle Farben playing at Badeschiff – a perfect Berlin end of summer feeling in the air. Sitting in front of the Hip Hop stage we watched that little cute boy at the turntables of the Beatgeeks. Father and son – what a adorable picture. German Hip Hop newcomer Ahzumjot made us leave for a late lunch while singing ‘Triff mich am Späti…’.
In the evening a tight program with amazing Woodkid, K.I.Z. and Moderat. K.I.Z. the only act who hardly tried to play as long they wanted to were ruled over by tight festival schedule, too. But in the end won one more real big fan that night. With the xth beer in our hands we rounded up the festival with Neneh Cherry & Rocketnumb.

It was a good weekend, great acts, a lot impressions and an euphoric atmosphere. Some may complain about the sound… but come on if you cannot have fun with friends, great weather and an amazing line up better stay at home and hide in your bed next year. Thanks!

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Today we saw the first fallen leaves. Fall has arrived. Time to begin our SlashMuse Festival Special to relive our summer:
// Part 1 // Fusion // Germany

 

 

“Far from everyday life we celebrate 4 days of parallel society of a special kind, looking for a possibly better world. We know, there’s always a ”but”. We also feel that there is no real place where all of this comes true.”

 

This is the mission formulated on Fusion Festival’s official website. To celebrate this “holiday communism” 60.000 music fans came together in the end of June and spent 4 days together on a former Russian military field two hours out of Berlin.

An enchanted huge field full of music of all styles, performance, vegetarian food, cinema and theater, tents and chill out areas builds a little country in a parallel universe. Like a country full of crazy people. Goa hippies, gym bag-Hipsters, glitter ravers and other fusionists. Between all the different areas where the crowd pounds in the moving beat of electronic tracks you find an old bus right in a little forest next to the dance floor of the Bachstelzen. This bus is a kiosk, selling glitter, lemonade, bubble gum and a smack in the face full of silver glitter particles!

 

Also, you can send mail from the Feldpost station or – when it starts raining – dance in a crazy little house that feels like a western saloon. When the pace of the track accelerates the dancing craziness is reunited in a choir of jubilance.

 

Our musical highlights were the intimate gig of the German-American Band Fenster and the great beats the Konstantin of Giegling offered us! Dancing Jellyfish and a desert full of carnivorous plants between mud puddles make four days of dancing a great spectacle. Everyone around me was lacking sleep but was full of love and developed a pack syndrome.

The last day was like a human garbage dump with different kind-hearted people offering to collect and recycle all kinds of drugs, sprayers leaving their mark until the next year, while you were sitting on the floor next to him eating scrambled eggs to warm your body after dancing in the rain. Like the end of a film, the end of the fusion seems sad and surreal but also very necessary. You wonder how everyone might get home and arrive back into reality – and then the bus driver with his Berliner Schnauze gives you a reality check and you leave the parallel universe.

Until next year.

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Hey love, what’s going on in here?
You’re ruthless like a stone
Hey love, why you don’t seem to care?
It’s to you I belong

 

 

Since I left the Quadron concert at Debaser Medis in Stockholm Saturday night, I listen to their song ‘hey love’ on repeat. I sometimes interrupt but just to listen to one of their other songs – ja, but that’s basically it. Quadron’s music is special; it gets you hooked because it is in a stunning way complex and simple at the same time. You feel so many layers and a sense for small details and nuances, which is a complex construct on the one hand. But as it all fits so perfectly in its neo soul / jazz / electric combination, it on the other hand ‘simply’ makes sense to your ears. It has a slight old fashioned touch to it in the sense that it feels familiar and so gets you hooked to it already after the first few beats. At the same time it is so new and fresh that you just want to soak it all in. and get more and more.

Until I entered the concert hall I had never heard of Quadron before and I had therefore no idea what to expect. When Coco O entered the stage wearing her hair in the exact same style like me (a high chignon – I know nothing special in Scandinavia at all I admit!) I felt safe. No one would suspect anymore that I didn’t know the Duo, singer Coco O and Producer Robin Hannibal from Copenhagen that were going to perform. People would rather think I was the biggest fan of Coco trying to copy her style. So you better be good up there on stage, Coco!

Obviously she was. After her first breathy lines I already fell for their music. But also with her way of moving, her gestures and the way she talked between the different songs I was amazed. It had the same high level of complexity like the music has in her rehearsed movements as well as natural expressions and glimpses of sporadic insecurity followed by a kickass performance and grace. When she moved her face to the side it struck me how much she looked like Mexican painter Frida Kahlo.

Her black sparkling dress and her dark hair up in the chignon accompanied by big golden creoles and an in-between-fingers ring on her right hand, that made her gestures even more exhilarating to look at. Looking for pictures of Coco O on the web later I found her pictures of her outfit at the David Letterman show, where she played with the Frida Kahlo association even more boldly herself, which made me smirk big times. In Stockholm now Coco O shared with the audience that most of her lyrics tell the story of unrequited love stories. Frida told her kind of pain stories in her kind of art. Of course that’s nothing new or unique for artists – but damn both such great outcomes of sucky feelings. Thanks for that.

I hoped Frida you could hear Coco sing!

A bus, a tent, a very old analoge camera, two weeks time and four brave friends looking for the adventure of their summer.

 

Berlin/ Glashütte/ Wien/ Graz/ Piran/ Orsera/ Porec/ Rovinj/ Bale/ Outlook- Fort de la Punta/ Prematura/ Pula/ Plitvice Lakes National Park/ Linz/ Lochau/ Berlin, July-September 2013

 

Starting right after work we arrived late in Glashütte, a little town in Saxony traditionally known for its clock crafts. First critically eyeballed ending up in the only open bar – having beer with the locals.

Next day after a nine hour drive on the czech motorway we arrived to Vienna. Mission Viennese Schnitzel; as big as the plate, with potato salad on an extra plate and beer. Unfortunately it was raining.

Starting of with a desire of sun we stopped in Graz and stayed over night; climbed the castle hill and enjoyed the 360 degree sight over the city, went shopping in the old town with its little alleys and shops. Walked the bridge of the Murinsel by night and imagined the frightening power of the Mur.

Back on the road, music up, windows open, leaving Austria heading to the Slovenian coast. The seaside appearing in front of us- Italy on the right Croatia on the left. A stop in Piran to take a first fresh breeze of the sea and to buy kilos of Fleur de Sel (Piranske Soline) which is gotten from a near by Fleur de Sel plantation.

After leaving Slovenia, just passed 100 metres of nowhere, we entered Croatia. Not beeing prepared at all we were driving along the coastside. Already night time we got a space at a camping ground in Orsera and a fat thunderstorm on top. The next day brilliant sunshine, our tent up in the second row to the sea (many campers come to the same ground for decades- which made us unprepared just arrived birds of paradise to an attraction).

Based in Orsera we explored the urban hinterland. Porec is on the World Heritage List. In Rovinj we lost our hearts – what a beautiful town on a rock, a spiral road leads one to the top. In charming bars one can watch the sunset while having a drink. Bale – reported to be a artist town – was rosting during lunch time.

Time to move. The next camping ground emerged as Fort de la Punta which was hosting the OUTLOOK Festival 2013 at that weekend. Time to dance at that amazing breathtaking location. Pula the city with an well sustained amphitheatre is worth visiting.

In Prematura (a national park in the very south of Istrien) it was time to enjoy this unbelievable crystal clear water again. Swimming in the sea after getting up from a tent is the best morning exercise in the world.

Final stop in Croatia was the Plitvice Lakes National Park in the very west of the country. Lets do not talk about how and when we got there. Fact is we arrived at Branka’s Appartment House (Branka is an old slavic name and means armament- just for the few of us who had their doubts and expected a giant). Branka an unbelievable nice host (found on airbnb). At the Plitvice Lakes National Park the Winnetou movie was shot. An unbelievable natural spectacle with blue blue clear water.

Time to say goodbye. On our way back a stop in in Linz: expecting a perfection of Linzer Tortes. Not successful, learning effect – do not think in stereotypes.

Last stop of our trip a tiny village in the Upper Palatinate. Nothing to see, nothing to do but two weeks laundry.

Arriving in Berlin Saturday night, more than 3000 kilometres behind us we are still friends and willing to do it again.

 

The bus was us a great home.

The tent is bigger than expected and waterproof.

The very old analoge camera did not survive the trip. R.I.P.

Two weeks time are not enough to capture this delightful spot.

Four brave friends found the adventure of their summer.

You’re the one I follow
Follow to the middle
Middle of the shadows
Far away from all the sorrows.

Appletree Garden Festival, Diepholz, Germany. 28-29 June 2013
Crystal Fighters were Saturday’s Secret Act and they even stole the headliners, the Shout Out Louds completely the show. The headliners of last year appeared the evening after the big thunderstorm when everyone was sun dried and beer rescued again and brought back the memories of last years summer night love stories. At the time of their sparkling gig, I was just chatting with some other musicians behind the stage, which meant missing out on the love motion in front of the stage and struggling with the feeling to jump and dance like bananas (as I was still trying to establish a semi-professional image for SlashMuse backstage). Feedback from the glittering, Handbrotzeit-eating, mudd-dancing crowd of love under the old apple trees was that Crystal Fighters were their dance highlight.
The other big success was SOHN, who’s ”Zugabe” gave me serious goose bumps although I am not easy to bring to physical reactions (except for some avangardistic dance moves) from music. It was magical. SlashMuse’s favorits, Fenster were supposed to start just the second the crazy thunderstorm shoke the apple trees and drowned a lot of our tents. Therefore most people where still busy getting buckets full of rain out of their tents when they finally played their lovely tunes. Highlight, drummer Rémi, who despite the rain played in socks!

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