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TWO GENTLEMEN

The Young Gods

Data Mirage Tangram

    "Sleep my angel, my child, see how the city spreads.” Under Franz Treichler’s wings, huge, breathtaking panoramas unfurl like beautiful dreamscapes on the edge of sleep. A weightless dream that is both comforting and blackened with darkness. A return to known land, whose topography has been modified by time and age. Three human beings in the matrix of Data Mirage Tangram, the new Young Gods album.

    Eight years without a studio album. The gods may have eternity on their side, it was about time they followed up on Everybody Knows and addressed the period of artistic confusion – in Treichler’s own words – that followed Al Comet’s departure and his replacement with the original god, Cesare Pizzi. The subsequent tour which focused on the Swiss band’s first two albums, could have ended in a deadlock. Instead, it brought a breath of fresh air to the trio, revitalised by this return to their roots. Rock and electro avant-gardists are not known for their backward-looking attitude. Still, thirty years of uninterrupted activity, celebrated with the publication of an 800page book in 2017, could only strengthen the gods’ will to write a new chapter to their already impressive history.

    Data Mirage Tangram was born in a basement amidst people. Franz Treichler (lyrics, guitar, electronics), Cesare Pizzi (sampling, electronics) and Bernard Trontin (drums, percussion) accepted Cully Jazz’s invitation to set up on the stage of the THBBC wine cellar for an open laboratory for the duration of the festival. “That’s when the songs appeared”, says Treichler. “We didn’t know where we were going. Bernard brought an old sampler on top of his drums, Cesare, a laptop, me, a guitar, a bass, a laptop… anything I had on hand. The audience came and went. We didn’t feel obliged to present a finished product. It was really stimulating.”

    At the end of the residence, the seven tracks of the album existed in body and mind. The curves still needed to be shaped, the textures refined, and the lengths cut up. The band incorporated the songs into their live repertoire, fine-tuning them for three years into their final structure, captured in Franz Treichler’s studios and mixed on the console of English record producer Alan Moulder (Nine Inch Nails, Editors, Foals). “For the first time ever, this record is the result of entirely collective work”, says the delighted Geneva pioneer.

    The result is to be savoured as a major album by The Young Gods and an addition to their multiple experiences as well as their shared DNA. Each track exists for itself while creating a coherent ensemble, a united journey in seven unique steps. “The tangram in the title refers to Japanese puzzles consisting of seven pieces that can form a square or various silhouettes of animals and characters”, says the singer. In this digital world, which the gods explore like visionaries, the music breathes and breaks free, undulating on the string of a guitar that once again takes centre stage.

    Entre en matière whispers a haunting mantra and Tear Up The Red Sky orchestrates a cosmic bombardment of divine fury. Figure sans nom returns to the band’s acid groove and Doors influence, while Moon Above ploughs a fallow field, bruising it with unidentified sound objects. The 11 spellbinding minutes of All My Skin Standing let you come back to your senses before a final explosion of white noise and saturated guitars. You Gave Me A Name offers a breath of fresh air, like a welcoming bubble. Finally, Everythem closes everyone’s eyelids, softly and silently.

    How would you sum up the Young Gods’ history? “A long road”, says Franz Treichler. A road that unfurls and stretches out to the horizon and its mirages.


    FORMAT INFORMATION

    Vinyl comes with CD version of the album enclosed.

    Mark Berube is one of Canada's most captivating and unfaltering talents, having devoted himself with the spirit of a craftsman to the art of song over the course of the last decade. With one foot rooted in the folk music tradition of story-telling, the poetry of spoken-word and the other planted in a childhood love of South African music, psychedelic folk pop and a smattering of jazz, Berube has a broad and eclectic base from which to build his albums, all bound together by his warmly potent voice. His shadowy co-conspirator Kristina Koropecki adds layers of cello, autoharp, saw and a classical music vocabulary to the mix, resulting in rich, lush and adventurous sonic landscapes.

    Sophie Hunger

    The Danger Of Light - Deluxe Edition

    “Every time I start with new recordings I think long and hard about how I can translate the energy of the concerts into the studio,” says Sophie Hunger. Those who have experienced the live performances by Hunger and her band can well imagine that this is not an easy undertaking, but one that she has now completed impressively.

    The international success of the albums "Monday's Ghost" (2008) and "1983" (2010), hundreds of concerts in Europe and North America as well as various awards have consolidated Hunger’s artistic self-confidence. When recording this album the Swiss artist deliberately left her home grounds and familiar territory to work with producer Adam Samuels and several musicians from the North American music scene. Samuel’s hand in the production of Warpaint, Daniel Lanois or John Frusciante and his basic philosophy of focusing on live recordings convinced her. After the first recording session with Hunger’s band in France, the American proposed a second session in Los Angeles with musicians like Josh Klinghoffer (guitar; Red Hot Chilli Peppers, PJ Harvey), Nathaniel Walcott (piano, trumpet; Bright Eyes) and Stephen Nistor (drums; Daniel Lanois, Dangers Mouse).

    "Adam was trying to provoke me, and that worked,” Hunger notes with approval. Back in Switzerland the tracks from the West Coast were completed with the Hunger band. In particular Michael Flury’s unique trombone, oscillating between jazz, rock and blues, shines like never before. But there was more. Hunger booked a third studio session, this time in Montréal. In the "Hotel2Tango” studio Hunger recorded a number of old and new songs with Howard Bilerman (Ex-Arcade Fire). Also involved were singer/songwriter Mark Berubé on piano, the cellist Kristina Koropecki as well as Brad Barr (guitar; The Barr Brothers) and David Payant (Drums; Thee Silver Mt. Zion). This Montréal session is included in the Deluxe Edition of Danger of Light.

    “A heart that beats must repeat itself.” In her lyrics the imaginative writer is striving for increasing clarity, irrespective of whether she tells imagined stories or takes on the way the world is run. "I take what buzzes around in my head, often just an image or a word, which I then allow to grow like a mushroom." So Rererevolution pictures someone who wishes for a revolution so much that he imagines one. The Swiss -German song Z'Lied vor Freiheitsstatue explores what the statue, as a monument by definition the antithesis of being free, would sing. In Perpetrator and Souldier Hunger places herself in extreme fictional worlds, speaking from the view point of a person running amok or from that of a soldier who she actually met after a concert in London. Holy Hells playfully toys with the idea of declaring a secret holy, only to find afterwards that one is left hanging in mid-air. LikeLikeLike captures the euphoria of folly, the ballad Take A Turn is a plea to pick oneself up again.

    'Das Neue' on the other hand focuses on the topic of constant change, but the chorus presents an ironic inversion: if everything changes all the time then I can’t remain how and what I am. The will to move on, to change, remains a subliminal leitmotiv of Sophie Hunger’s new album.


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