I’m not one for levity when it comes to music. Unlike most of the rest of my life I take it rather seriously, perhaps too seriously. Music, of course, can affect and reflect our moods… if I am feeling down I don’t reach for Joy Division, in fact I don’t reach for any music at all. When I’m not, which thankfully is most of the time, I reach for the doomier/ deeper/ more difficult side of things… as is reflected by what is generally featured on this website.
We live in extraordinary times, however, and I have found myself neither wanting to be ‘doomy’ in a sort of drone type way… with my preferences edging towards some of the more ambient ECM recordings, and on the other side bands like Slayer, Asyphx and Metallica’s ‘Master of Puppets’. Weird right?
So where am I going with this? When Andreas from Adansonia records dropped this Ziguri album on me he told me that it was something a bit different from the label. A longstanding band hailing from the Kreuzberg area of Berlin. This was a good thing all round. Firstly I really like Kreuzberg, I met my now wife when she lived in neighbouring Neukölln, and we regularly go and see her family in Schöneberg, on the other side. In the years that I’ve spent in Berlin I have always found myself gravitating there… and the music on this album weirdly resonates with me in the same way.
It’s difficult to describe exactly why that is… but I can imagine walking around that area with this album on observing the diverse street-life that you find in this part of the city… there’s a definite German element to this music with elements of motorik mixed in with a space/ trance sound that takes you on something of a tangent to the realities of life… this is mixed with a certain levity which, I think, is why it is so welcome for me at the moment. Here the techno of Berlin is evident within the bass beats that really delve their way into your sub-conscious
Indeed, it is this tangential feeling which somehow helps me to plug into the music that I have always liked… here it finds a new outlet for me… one that I don’t feel as if I have to take seriously…. one where I can just be entertained. This, perhaps, comes from another Berlin influence that seems to be redolent in this music… that of the Berlin Cabaret tradition, which I feel is at least present in the joie de vivre of this album.
I’m not sure whether this all makes sense or whether I’m transmitting some sort of aural hallucinations through the lockdown haze… however the last, hopefully cogent, thing that I want to say about this album is that the standard of playing is superb. The band is properly tight and this makes all of the above… such as it is… extremely worthwhile.
This then is something that is a bit different for Adansonia, and a bit different for me… but it seems to make total sense in a slightly detached and otherworldly sort of way. It’s an album that, while by no means frivolous, is one that I can enjoy in and of itself without delving to deeply into it. It is one that is redolent with ideas that I really enjoy and as such will be a welcome, if adjunct, album to my music collection.
You can hear some snippets from the album here.
‘Howgh Howgh Howgh’ is available now from Adansonia Records here:
– 200 x classic black vinyl, 180gr, gatefold cover, hand-numbered
– 100 x clear vinyl, 180gr, gatefold cover, hand-numbered*
*exclusive available at Adansonia Records
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