Some months ago we had the pleasure to have a little chat with the fine young people of Berlin based multi national Band FENSTER. Meanwhile increased to four people, the band’s original Jonathan and JJ are now supported by former live musicians Lucas UFO from France and folk-ambient genius WILL SAMSON from the UK. This changes in line up heavily influenced working on the new long player, since FENSTER went from writing songs classically two by two into jamming around with their band mates. Working also firstly with new producer E.T., the band’s sound for the new record have changed totally. But not just because of the line up…
AN ALBUM THAT IS A SOUNDTRACK THAT IS AN ALBUM
With EMOCEAN FENSTER released 45 minutes of original music in 11 beautiful, mostly instrumental songs. Indeed you can call this one the band’s 3rd album. Therefore these lines almost would have been a usual album review if not the band had decided to go one step further.
Back in 2014 the idea was born to nothing less but a whole original motion picture. Even if the band did their own videos the whole DIY way since the beginning, with shooting, writing, editing by themselves, now they decided to push that by creating their own experimental vision of a sci-fi story between fiction and real life documentary.
The listener (in sense of old fashioned listening to a full album via CD, Vinyl or Mp3, with all the tracks in order) can of course profit from the new concept. EMOCEAN has become another dense and detailed piece of music, perfectly fitting into the bands back catalogue. But sometimes in a more decent and subtle way, or as Jonathan Jarzyna describes: “It’s maybe more a kind of music to put on and enjoy, because it’s less calling for your attention as a conceptual album with vocals and lyrics. The music comes a bit more discrete but also evokes images and things.”
Speaking clearly the album once more contains FENSTER’s fine mix of indie-, dream- and 60s pop, peaking into cheesy synth pop moments and still surprising with, f.e., beautiful bass clarinet solos. Collecting a sometimes floating, sometimes stomping mixture of eclectic songs, as well as a classically repeating movie theme, the album is still very tight and timeless.
FROM A AS IN AUBERGINUS TO Z AS IN ZIGGY STARDUST
And what to say about these visuals? Emocean – the movie – is a weird 67 minutes long ride, through different dimensions and genres. Filmed in a sometimes crappy, sometimes arty SVHS look, and overlayed by a lot of green screen effects and animation stuff, the screening becomes an entertaining hour that truly leaves you kind of high. The story of the movie, it’s sometimes simply crazy scenario and the non-linear narrative form makes it special and soaks you right into a versatile watching experience.
Starting with a documentary (near mockumentary) part, showing the band while recording their newest album, the story breaks when the band members crash with their van straight into another dimension. Trapped on planet Auberginus, a place where people can’t feel anything anymore, as the only human beings, like men who fell to earth. Through the whole story, which can be seen illustrating the full album, since the recording of music was first, each song is the sound to a different atmosphere and collides with different layers of reality in the movie.
FROM MITTE TO MONTREAL
What started as an early joke, became real when the band began to shoot in February 2015 with cast and crew of 100+ people, consisting of of friends, fans and volunteers on different spaces in and around Berlin. Followed by post production, which took place through the summer. Getting deep into technical details with just a little experience, the band confessed: “Coming from audio, video is totally new and crazy world. Basically we got into some weird and nerdy stuff, involving VHS Cameras”. After completing the whole workload as a threesome, a successful crowdfunding campaign brought their dream to life and in July FENSTER premiered EMOCEAN with a screening and a full live performance of their soundtrack at Berlin’s famous Berghain Club. With such a rapid workflow the only 10 day long rehearsals for these screening-concerts became a new challenge too. Constantly exploring options and being passionated, the beat goes on.
For October FENSTER were invited to Montreal’s famous Festival du nouveau cinéma to present the movie again with a live performance of the soundtrack. In the following days the band will play few last shows this year, including the first ever TUTTI FRUTTI FEST on December 15th; full schedule below. Another tour in February 2016 is already planned and another “joke” about a second movie-soundtrack-project has been made. FENSTER are here to stay.
Fenster – Live 2015
08.12. – Cologne (DE) — Tsunami Club
09.12. – Düsseldorf (DE) — FFT Düsseldorf
10.12. – Gent (BE) — Glimps Festival (/ Cine-concert)
11.12. – Karlsruhe (DE) — Die Kurbel – Karlsruhes Kinogenossenschaft (Cine-concert)
13.12. – Rorschach (CH) — Treppenhaus Rorschach
15.12. – Berlin (DE) — Kantine am Berghain (TUTTI FRUTTI FEST w/ Klaus Johann Grobe, Forever Pavot)