Schön verzweifelt

In der heutigen Sendung begegnen uns Erzählerstimmen, die mit sich und der Welt hadern. «That’s right I’m fucked up and it can’t get any better», singt etwa Danny Bateman alias Frog auf seinem neuen Album Count Bateman. Doch selbst, wenn das Innere schonungslos nach Außen gekehrt wird, wie auf Niels Freverts Putzlicht. Es kann eine befreiende Art der Verzweiflung sein, aufrichtig und damit hoffnungsvoll gestimmt. Dies gilt erst recht für YVON (aka Carsten Erobique Meyer, Jaques Palminger und Yvon Jansen), die Krisen und Kreisgedanken-Probleme nonchalant in Easy Listening zu verpacken wissen – Mut machende Verzweiflung zum Mitsingen.

Diese Sendung war zu hören am Mittwoch, den 09.10.19 – 20:00-22:00 Uhr.
Wdh.: Samstag, 12.10. von 15:00-17:00 Uhr

Stream online here: ByteFM
Berlin: 91.0 MHz // Hamburg: 91.7 MHz


Field GuidesFake Calder, Pt. 2Whatever's Clever
HovvdyCathedralDouble Double Whammy
Andrew TaylorWhat I Really MeanRock Indiana Records
Night HeronRead the
The Last DetailKilling TimeElefant
The Grief BrothersA Small Town Gone To HellCountry Mile Records
FrogRIP to the Empire State Flea MarketAudio Antihero
FrogIt's Something I DoAudio Antihero
Penelope IslesUnderwater Record StoreBella Union
Say Sue MeYour BookDamnably
YVONBootsfahrt Mit Geschrei_Asexy
Field MusicOnly In A Mans WorldMemphis Industries
Richard DawsonTwo HalvesDomino
Monnone AloneThe Dystopian Days Of YoreMeritorio Records
DIE REALIT€TNur die RealitŠtTrikont
Tandem FelixOil Moneyself-released
Human BarbieWe
MNNQNSFall DownFatCat
Dry CleaningSit Down MealIt's OK
Strawberry GuyBirch TreeMelodic
Strawberry GuyMrs MagicMelodic
Francis LungUnnecessary LoveMemphis Industries
EdwinLucky PennyDogs On Tour Records
Niels FrevertDas mit dem GlŸcklichsein ist relativGršönland
Niels FrevertImmer Noch Die MusikGršönland
Pernice BrothersEvidently SoAshmont Records
Frankie CosmosWith Great PurposeSub Pop
Beno”t PioulardKeepMorr Music

Reeperbahn Festival 2019

It’s that time of the year again: the famous Kiez of St. Pauli buzzing with sounds, words and music fans during the 14th edition of the Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg. Four festival days packed with numerous talks, awards and meetings – Same procedure as last year? The answer is both yes and no.

Taking part at the annual RBF almost feels like a very pleasant class reunion: meeting up with dear old friends I only get see once a year like Dino, who works for Redeye Distribution in Berlin or my dear colleague Alice from Aachen. She runs the fabulous blog Offbeat Music and also cares for music in her radio shows for ByteFM and NovumFM. And of course, there’s loads of music to hear and to discover! Sometimes too much at once with 90 venues on board for 600 shows. Not really a bad thing, right?

W.H. Lung

I wasn’t at all familiar with the first band I watched on Wednesday evening and had no idea what to expect. W.H. Lung hail from Manchester, played as a five piece and mix several goods from the 70ties to 90ties: some kind of motorik synthie-pop, combined with a shoegaze guitar sound and a slight dark wave attitude. Imagine Stone Roses married to Neu! while flirting with Joy Division. It was a wild combination, groovy and forceful. The lanky singer of W.H. Lung exposed some versatile skills in body balance while his bare feet showed a daring collection of colourful toenails.

Bobby Oroza

Another flamboyant detail popped up later this evening when the Finnish soul singer Bobby Oroza played his showcase at Angie’s Nightclub. He presented his soul-soaked tunes in a matching wardrobe from head to foot with classy dark suit, pocket square and shiny black shoes. All topped up with magenta-coloured socks! Oroza’s handsome appearance and sentimental sound may feel like being caught in a long-lost time warp, but that’s fine. His heartfelt crooning was perfectly harmonized, relaxed and comforting, sometimes refined with jazzy guitar chops and an up-tempo rhythm section. At one point he apologized: “I only got love songs. I hope that’s alright?”. No doubt about it, Bobby Oroza’s a humble artist with exceptional style and talent.


Thursday for me at the Reeperbahn Fest was a bit of a dilemma. Three showcases I wanted to see shared the same time slot. Bummer! In the end I chose Sasami and I think this was a pretty good decision. The classically trained indie-songwriter Sasami Ashworth is anything but ordinary. She’s an artist making her own way and transformed her songs to an inspiring live experience as a trio. Sometimes I worried her long hair might get tangled up between the strings of her guitar. Her performance was raw and powerful with a refreshing and healthy “fuck this!” attitude. Sasami never intended to please the crowd. But she’s on a mission and she cares for female empowerment. Again and again she mentioned the hashtag #empoweringwoman. Right on! Some people in the audience were overwhelmed, if not disturbed by her statements, and she obviously touched a raw nerve.

And here’s the thing: The Reeperbahn Festival signed up to Keychange, an international initiative who cares about gender equality in the music industry. This year’s line-up was indeed progressive, lots of female artists included like Sasami from California and her excellent female rhythm section. But the harsh truth is: the venue for her was only half-filled and the audience mostly male. Sasami definitely deserved better.

The Stroppies Melbourne live in concert @ Molotow Hamburg RBF#19

The Stroppies

My next musical highlight happened on Friday, shortly after midday. Australia was this year’s focus country and thankfully not only big names like Feist were thrown into the festival field, also the less known Indiepop act The Stroppies played two shows.

The stage at Molotow for The Stroppies was tiny and the PA system wasn’t the best. Nevertheless, the four-piece from Melbourne managed to play an enjoyable and charismatic set of old school jangly guitar tunes. I quite liked the enthusiasm of the drummer, who sang along all the time although he had no mike. The bass player was super cool and her deadpan vocals added a light post-punk feel in to the mix while the other singer changed between strumming the guitar or dealing with the vintage keyboard. Sometimes on his knees and with his head on the keys. Above all, it was fun and fresh. The Stroppies finished off with delights and the brooding vibe of Cellophane Car – this alone was already worth doing the festival trip to Hamburg! But hold on, there was more good stuff to follow.

Penelope Isles

When the Brighton quartet Penelope Isles released their debut album on Bella Union this year, I worshipped a few tracks. But live, they were incredibly impactful and impressive. With up to four voices in the mix, Penelope Isles presented a super tight and powerful performance of harmony-laden indie rock galore and beyond. The band acted like a solid unit, easily managed to shift between instruments and genres. Maybe it’s because the two singers and songwriters are brother and sister – it’s a family affair with a deeper understanding for sonic aesthetics and expression. Their song Gnarbone ended up as a ten-minute adventure of captivating heavy psyche-rock dynamics. At some point the track ended, but suddenly they start again and the audience just went crazy. It was one of these special goosebumps’ moments, a rare treat in live music these days.

Thank you Penelope Isles and thank you Reeperbahn Festival 2019. It was a real pleasure again.


27th September 2019

(Keine) Sauregurkenzeit

Von wegen Sauregurkenzeit: Die Sonne scheint. Die Frisur sitzt. Und auch in Sachen Musik mangelt es derzeit nicht an erfreulichen Neuheiten. Besonders gut macht sich das selbstbetitelte Debüt von Alpine Subs aus Chicago. Deren Sixties-inspirierter Gitarrenpop lässt dezent die Beatles anklingen und sorgt auf ganzer Länge für zwangloses Vergnügen. Kaum verwunderlich, dass ihre streng limitierte CD auf Subjangle Records sich verkauft wie warme Semmeln.

Wer es zur Sauregurkenzeit noch etwas tropischer mag, dem könnte das Album «Foam» von Divino Niño gefallen. Das Quartett residiert zwar ebenfalls am Michigan See, alle Mitglieder haben jedoch einen lateinamerikanischen Hintergrund. Musikgiganten wie die Beach Boys kamen dem Divino Niño-Songwriter Camilo Medina angeblich erst vor fünf Jahren zu Ohren. Seine Band verknüpft lässigen Latino-Rock mit amerikanischem Crooner-Pop der Siebziger, Medina singt mal Englisch und mal Spanisch. Gegen die schwüle Wärme ihrer Songs käme keine Schlechtwetterfront an.

Diese Sendung ist zu hören am Mittwoch, den 17.07.19 – 20:00-22:00 Uhr.
Wdh.: Samstag, 20.07. von 15:00-17:00 Uhr

Stream online here: ByteFM
Berlin: 91.0 MHz // Hamburg: 91.7 MHz


GurrShe SaysGurr Records
Frankie CosmosWindowsSub Pop
Marble ArchGoldGŽographie
Parachute WordsIt's
Divino Ni–oMelty CarameloWinspear Records
Divino Ni–oQuieroWinspear Records
Belle And SebastianSister BuddhaMatador
BuzzcocksEver Fallen in LoveDomino
Die Liga der gewšhnlichen GentlemenIch verlieb mich wieder in michTapete
The Divine ComedyAbsolutely ObsoleteDivine Comedy Records
The Hannah BarberasI Like You In BlueSubjangle
Alpine SubsMiles AwaySubjangle
Stef ChuraJumpin' JackSaddle Creek
Ada LeaThe DancerSaddle Creek
ArmstrongLove Hate Passion And WarBeautiful Music
CrumbGhostrideCrumb Records
Cool SoundsAround And
Sam EvianRight Down the LineSaddle Creek
Slark MoanHonestySlough Water Records
Kate BollingerJe Reverai ˆA
Stephen SteinbrinkMaximum SunlightMelodic
Boy ScoutsGet Well SoonAnti- Records
Butcher The BarRosaBobo Integral
Holy Tunics33Meritorio Records
The Slow SummitsSpirit of the LyricsHundreds and Thousands
Dark GlobesIt's All
Alpine SubsThe DoctorSubjangle
Alpine SubsWhat ElseSubjangle
Penelope IslesLeipzigBella Union
DehdLuckyFire Talk
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