Sometimes I think, in recent years, I may have over-consumed culture a little. So far this year, there have been few gigs, few films, few books that have got me real excited. Then again, I always think that at some point each year and then, when I reflect for our top lists at the end of the year, I realise what a great year it has been. This week brings back to Berlin some trusted artists of which we just know they never disappoint. Yes, there is some new stuff, too.
High Wolf and Aidan Baker at Monarch: Last time, High Wolf played as part of the ICAS Suite Festival and maybe not all of you attended this. Now, they are back with their own headline show, hailing all the way from France, the project performs experimental ambient music with ethnic folk influences. It's an out-of-this world experience. Support by our local king of experimental music. Highly recommended.
Scout Niblett and Ólöf Arnalds at Volksbühne: Scout Niblett has been around, like, forever. And she has collaborated with people like Bonnie Prince Billie. Her blues infused folk music is sexy and raw and often rock’n’roll but, overall, just beautiful. You have to like Neil Young and The White Stripes and you will be in heaven. Icelandic folk singer Ólöf Arnalds = perfect support. Volksbühne = perfect setting.
Sin Fang and Pascal Pinion at Grüner Salon: Some indie post rock music for you this Wednesday night? Innocent and pretty, Sin Fang is for those who just want a nice evening in one of Berlin’s most beautiful venues.
Health at Berghain: You know I am obsessed with this noise group who know a thing or two about marketing. My gig of the week, month, year. Come on over and see me freak out.
Kurt Vile & The Violators at Bi Nuu: Though I didn’t give Kurt Vile the best review when I watched him last, his music has grown on me since. We got off to a bad start but we have made up now (he does not know about any of this of course).
David Grubbs w/ Andrea Belfi & Stefano Pilia and Svarte Greiner at West Germany: Attention, this was announced for Haus Ungarn but now takes place at West Germany and I bet this will be good. David Grubbs, known for playing in bands like Bastro, Gastr Del Sol and Red Crayola will be joined by Andrea Belfi and Stefano Pilia this evening and play under the name B/G/P. Support will be Svarte Greiner, who plays dark and doomy experimental ambient music and who alone would justify a visit to West Germany that night.
Les Rhinoceros and Malve at Bei Ruth: Another interesting mix of bands that don’t really fit together at Bei Ruth. Les Rhinoceros are a “jazz core” band from Washington and are on Tzadik Records, John Zorn’s record label. They play music that’s “blending aspects of rock, world music, noise, ambient and jazz”. Malve from Leipzig are a relatively new band consisting of ex-members from Zann and Danse Macabre. They play 90s influenced chaotic hardcore and this will be their very first Berlin show. Sounds exciting!
The Babies at Monarch: Fluffy Lo-Fi indie rock on Woodsist records with people from Woods themselves and Vivian Girls. Yum yum yum and one to not miss!
Clockwork Orchestra, Mirror Talk and Sea Urchin at bei Ruth: A concert night hosted by the O’ Tannenbaum bar crew and taking place at Bei Ruth. Clockwork Orchestra plays interesting and playful synthi pop, Mirror Talk is a dark cold wave synth project and Sea Urchin sounds very ambient experimental. Afterwards there will be some DJs and dancy party music.