SANKT OTTEN + N - MÄNNERFREUNDSCHAFTEN UND METAPHYSIK [CD|2xLP|DIGITAL]
The German instrumental duo SANKT OTTEN (Stephan Otten, Oliver Klemm), founded in 1999, has been releasing music on Denovali Records since 2009. Their 10th full length album called MÄNNERFREUNDSCHAFTEN UND METAPHYSIK (eng: Male Friendships and Metaphysics) is once again a collaboration record - this time with fellow countryman and experimental guitarist N (Hellmut Neidhardt). The eight pieces on the album are based on freely improvised studio sessions and have all been recorded live, with a few overdubs added by SANKT OTTEN later.
SANKT OTTEN's Denovali labelmate N - for whom this album is release nr. 47 - is well-known for Noise, Ambient and Drone sounds standing apart from classical song writing. The aim of this collaboration was to combine the perspectives of the genres of both partners, with N adding a grave and menacing mood to SANKT OTTEN's Electronica and Kraut Rock and SANKT OTTEN providing the sound walls of N with an unusual dynamics.
The albums starts off with with the guitar drone track EIGENTLICH IST ALLES SCHÖN (eng: Actually Everything is Beautiful), in which the unusual style-clash already clearly manifests itself; the opener literally cuts through the ears of the listener. One of the highlights of the albums, the subsequent 13-minute monster MASSIERE DIE MASCHINE (eng: Massage the Machine), offers salvation. The powerful, but always minimal drumming and the sequencer bass of Stephan Otten constantly drive the track forward and lead to an intricated E-bow battle between Oliver Klemm and N, with their melodic lines closing in on each other.
A further highlight of the album is HEILE WELT (eng: Ideal World), a track reminiscent of the hymnal atmosphere of BRIAN ENO, if only this beauty was not burst open by the feedback-guitar of N. A piece immersed in its own orchestral slowness, with a harmonic twist into the unknown ...
The album closes with the noisy and at the same time meditative ambient song AM ENDE DER FAHNENSTANGE (eng: At the end of the road (fig.)). While recording this impro-drone numerous tracks have been piled up on top of Neidhardt's guitar amps and effects, including a harmonium, additional guitars, synthesizers and a prepared piano the oscillations of the strings of which have been induced by E-bows. A mellotron whispers a fragile melody from the distance and perfects the track ...
Vinyl version: 180g double vinyl, heavy matte gatefold covers, includes sticker & download code
CD: nice 6 panel digipak including a sticker
Stephan Otten: Drums, Programming, Synthesizers
Oliver Klemm: Guitar, Synthesizers, Piano
N (47): Hellmut Neidhardt: Amps, Guitar