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Kammerflimmer Kollektief - Jinx  CD (album) cover


Kammerflimmer Kollektief


Post Rock/Math rock

4.00 | 3 ratings

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4 stars Daylight Mysticism

This band is without a doubt my new favourite 'post-rock' outfit. Not that I think they've got anything to do with the genre, but still.... Kammerflimmer Kollektief are to underground German music, what Acid Mothers Temple are to Japan - well at least they should be. Stitched together by numerous of experimental musicians playing everything from viola and cello to harmonium, saxophone and double bass - the music here is anything but dull.

If you visit the band's homepage, you'll get a fair idea about this sonic collective in their own introduction - going like this:

"Delire goes marchin' in, desire for ever...

The Kammerflimmer Kollektief plays music, which should not be written down, for it would scorch the paper. The project, whose music meanders between precision and freedom, has been founded in 1996 by Thomas Weber. Up to now, the Kollektief has released eight albums in all sorts of line ups. Live performances all over the world are realized as a trio with Heike Aumüller and Johannes Frisch. The Kammerflimmer Kollektief is emotive and impassioned. It is also as lucid and precise as those moods which Robert Musil (who is above suspicion of being a romanticist) called "daylight mysticism". The lyrics and the music want to be heard, they want to be explored, even suffered. Sound builds songs which are made of sounds, and yet there are no longer songs."

Apart from the little mistake in regards to album count(these guys are now on their 9th record), this little intro should preferably say a thing or two about the nature of what is going on here - what the music tries to accomplish and the whole esoteric nature behind it all. For me personally, I immediately thought of Krautrock, when I first read that - the spiritual kosmiche idea that also at one point got written down in what looked and felt like a proper manifesto. On here with Kammerflimmer Kollektief, the feel of the music is somewhat different. Even so, they still want to generate a link between the arts - care for music in a way that surpasses ordinary words and gestures - again much like the Krautrockers of yesteryear.

That is one link they've got in common with their musical heritage, but that's not all. The actual music here strongly echoes bands like NEU!, CAN and perhaps an acoustic take on the droning and floating Berlin School of electronics. This is just done through unorthodox usage of cello, viola and that hovering harmonium.

NEU! happen to be the closest in nature to this band - at least that's what I personally think. Jinx is an album that feeds off a similar vibe - one that leans on the naive and floating - making music in a way that exudes ease and natural flow. I've seen this quality described elsewhere on the net as free-jazz, and while the instruments are what you'll most likely find in a jazz band constellation - I'd much rather compare what's going on here with the old masters of calm natural and naive Krautrock, NEU!. Some people might call the music droning, and sure you do get a long array of stretched out surfaces of sound - much credited to the harmonium and string instruments that achieve an eerie almost levitating vibe, but on top of this - the music goes in all directions. Jazz or maybe anti jazz, electronic meanderings, strange saxophone utters and an uncannily wild and adventurous touch of viola that will have your feline friends climbing the walls...

The CAN link is something I hear in the sparse vocal attributes, where you get served with some frail and stuttering female mumblings - never really singing or speaking - just doing those wordless vocalisations that made Damo Suzuki stand out from the rest of rock n roll's feverish front-men.

All in all Jinx is a highly imaginative album, that more than adequately introduces the listener to the brilliantly unorthodox world of Kammerflimmer Kollektief. People who've had enough of those endless crescendos and build ups this genre usually spurts out like a bulimic volcano - you lot should dive straight into this band's wonderful discography. I promise you, you won't regret it!

One of the finest discoveries I've had this summer. Daylight mysticism? It's when you pop this mother on the old stereo rack - open up the terrace doors and start inflating balloons in your favourite silk kimono.

Guldbamsen | 4/5 |


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