The long awaited debutalbum from Copenhagens experienced duo Svartbag contains cinematic walls of guitardrones and beautiful washes of ambient soundscapes.
Minimalistic drone-rock with inspiration from shoegaze, space rock and the great cosmic bands of the seventies Kraut scene.
Featuring members from Bleeder Group and Düreforsög.
Noise and Silence.
The band Svartbag is an entity full of contradictions. Like its namesake the gull, Svartbag is a free bird, but also a scavenger with a black back. An outsider impelled by an underlying primitive force. A black sheep.
Elements, that on the surface seem violent and indigestible for everyday people are, in the hands of Svartbag, transformed into something oddly fascinating, alluring and soothing.
With the use of guitars, loop-pedals and analogue effects, Svartbag creates a minimalist instrumental music, where generated coincidences are intuitively integrated in a repetitive universe of drones.
The references are clear: kraut-rock (Neu/Can/Popol Vuh), space-rock (Spacemen 3), noise-rock (VU/Sonic Youth), and electronic pioneers like Terry Riley, Brian Eno and Suicide.
In 1996, an ad in a Buy and Sell paper brought the two guitarists, A.REX and Niels Ladefoged together. Under the pretence of composing rocksongs for their band, they spent time in rehearsal exploring their gear, and soon realised that they could generate incredible moods using simple effects.
In 2005, the multi-musician Peter Kyed joined the duo and contributed with a more electronic sound through simple drum programming and sampled real sounds. Occasionally, the trio becomes a quartet when joined by Andreas Hauer-Jensen (Düreforsög/Mit Nye Band/Bleeder Group) on drums, which can be heard on 4 of the albums 5 tracks. Furthermore, Peter Peter (ex-Sort Sol/Bleeder Group) gives a guest performance on the homage to The Factory, 'Billy Name', in which faint voice-overs from some of Andy Warhols sidekicks from the sparkling Factory period at the end of the 1960s, can be heard.
The long tracks and evocative patterns of sound unveil dark and ominous states of mind, which are consistently relieved by confident tones and minimalist melodies.
The two guitars alternate between performing duets and complementing each other, while bass drones, real sounds, and intermittent, jazzy drums and echoes create hypnotic rhythms.
Svartbags debut album has been in development for a long time, not least because of the bands impromptu working method. The band finds their point of departure in the philosophy that the equipment itself knows what it can and will do - which makes it the band's job to pick, refine and arrange the manifestations which are brought about by the equipment itself.
"Into a scene currently brimming over with talent, creativity, and energy, Svartbag has loosed a meteor that's cool on the surface and molten inside, a tightly-coiled machine that effortlessly walks through nearly forty years of avant-garde, druggy minimalism as only people who have lived with these sounds for decades could. Absolutely nobody is doing this sort of thing better right now, and I can only hope they take this show on the road and bring it stateside. Bravo, gentlemen, and thank you for your patience." - The Silent Ballet
"Catchy as a marauding bastard, this lot invaded my brainbox from the moment the CD landed, the ensemble cooking up five deep space meditations that corrode the listener?s living space with the kind of Asmus Tietchens SPAT EUROPA post-Krautrock sound that sets your room swirling. ..it does truly sound as though this lot have been marinating their music for at least five years before pouring out these first five tall glass tumblers, and all the better it sounds for the extra effort they?ve made. Lovely." - Julian Cope, Head Heritage
"Picture the still-smoldering ruins of an incinerated cityscape after nuclear meltdown and you've got the perfect band for the accompanying soundtrack." - Textura
"..an impressive debut." - Whisperin and Hollerin
released May 13, 2008
All tracks composed by Svartbag.
Niels Ladefoged: electric guitar, samplers and electronics.
A.REX: electric guitar, samplers and electronics.
Peter Kyed: electronics and real sound.
Andreas Hauer-Jensen: drums.
Peter Peter: outro lead guitar and feedback on "Billy Name",
Voice over on "Billy Name" by The Factory Talkers:
Taylor Mead, Holly Woodlawn, Amy Taupin, Stephen Shore, Chuck Wein, Mary Woronow and of course Billy Name.
All voiceover material kindly lent out by the mentioned Factory Talkers and recorded by Stephen watson from the Factory-Made website.
"To all the cows" in "billy Name" by Taylor Mead.
Recorded at Ciccia Studio, 2006.
Sound engineer: David Ciccia. Mixed by A.REX.
Produced by Niels Ladefoged and A.REX.
Illustrations by Mads Westrup.
Computer by Jeff.
"All rights reserved", Rump Recordings, 2008.
More info on: www.rump.nu & www.svartbag.dk
Rump Recordings was founded by Jens Berents Christiansen in Copenhagen in 2003 with an aim to release uncompromising
electronic and electro-acoustic music. The label does not attempt to focus solely on one genre but prefers to zoom in on the un-categorizable fields that emerge when artists start to experiment and push the existing boundaries of music....more