Zeitkratzer - Neue Volksmusik

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Internationally-acclaimed ensemble Zeitkratzer tackles folk music on their project Neue Volksmusik (New Folk Music). Zeitkratzer approaches folk music in its essence: constant transformation. Genuine folk music is what it is due to an inherent state of flux, defined by its constantly changing nature. It is in fact an authentic practice for Zeitkratzer to claim different musical traditions, taking possession of them and forming them to fit specific ideas. This project started in 2009 when Zeitkratzer presented Volksmusik (ZKR 002CD), an anarchic ethno-musicological journey through the Danube valley. From heartrending group-yodeling to wild Balkan capers, the ensemble pulled out all the stops. Despite the somewhat brutal humor of the music, there is never an intention to fool around or make a satire on folk music. The previous folk music repertoire has been expanded for Neue Volksmusik with music traditions from Switzerland. Of course, Zeitkratzer does not treat this music in any less of a radical way than their other musical material. In "Alpen Horn Noise," (un)traditional alphorn sounds are combined with Romanian folk dance. Acoustic shadows of Bavarian/Austrian music merge with a droning, hurdy-gurdy like singing, suggesting a connection to the Balkan mountains. Musical traditions are tumbled together and meet each other in new ways. We hear some grotesque qualities of folk music, a music driven by cow bell percussion and a manic muezzin. Further on we hear group yodeling, which definitely turns every Alpine milk sour, but which also recalls the original function of shouting as a mountain signal. At the same time, Neue Volksmusik also includes contemplative and serious music. "Alpenrose" is dominated by uncanny body-less harmonic sounds, and the chords in "Alpsäge" float ethereally. All recorded live at the festival Alpentöne at the Vierwaldstätter lake in Switzerland.