Another dose of whirring rhythms and dark drones courtesy of Stefan Schneider and Sven Kacirek. This time around they have introduced the beguiling tones of Swedish singer Sofia Jernberg on three pieces, taking their music to a new level.
The Düsseldorf / Hamburg duo Schneider Kacirek released their debut album some three years ago. A coarse energy ran through “Shadows Documents”, drawing on the pair of musicians' various excursions to Kenya as producers. “Shadows Documents” was a somnambulistic interpretation of Kenyan music using drums and percussion (Kacirek) and analogue synthesizers (Schneider). No Samples.
The two of them took their time working on the new album “Radius Walk”. Since their debut release, they have toured extensively with the likes of John McEntire (Tortoise, The Sea and Cake). The experience of playing together in live situations has influenced how they interact as musicians, a process which has helped to shape the new record. The acoustics of Sven Kacirek's studio were set up perfectly to capture the forceful sound of the drums and analogue synthesizers as they melt into a compact whole. The result is a sonically more concentrated and more transparent LP in comparison to its predecessor.
Dark bass drones and whirring percussion sounds figure prominently in the music. A fascination with repetitive rhythm is the common thread which runs through the musical development of both musicians: listen to Stefan Schneider in his other projects, the bands Kreidler and To Rococo Rot and his albums with Hans-Joachim Roedelius. Further evidence can be heard on Kacirek's solo albums, in particular on his much-lauded “Kenya Sessions”.
By introducing the Swedish singer Sofia Jernberg, Schneider and Kacirek have added a new dimension to their music. They first met Jernberg in Berlin, where she performed with Kenyan singer Ogoya Nengo for whom Schneider and Kacirek had done production work in the past. As one of the most sought after vocalists on the improvised music circuit, Jernberg made an immediate impression on Schneider and Kacirek, who were quick to suggest that they work together. The splendid fruits of their labours can be savoured on three tracks on the album. “Dust”, “I Atlanten” and “Smiling” express both Jernberg's love of Scandinavian folk music and her mastery of improvisation. Her voice neither dominates the songs in the manner of a singer songwriter, nor does it lean towards crossover experimentation. It feels more as if a brand new genre of music has been unlocked.