What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
I have been playing the violin since my childhood and have had a classical education. In addition, I listened to all kinds of music and played on every instrument I could find. Quite annoying for everyone who lived in our household. Since about 20 years I play violin, guitar, double bass etc. in different bands and projects. I originally developed Neuhaus as a musical support for a cabaret artist who was looking for a musician with a string instrument for a new program. For this I wrote a lot of music with violin, double bass and a loop station. Due to good feedback, I had the idea to develop this music further and to play it without cabaret artists. Now I have recorded and released my first album “Scapes & Spaces, Volume I”. Already the second album is planned, which will be released in November 2019.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
In January 2019 NEUHAUS released its debut album “Scapes & Spaces, Volume 1”. The musician recorded the five tracks himself in his studio “Drosselton” during many nights. The music was mixed by Alain Meyer, who already produced some current albums (The Night is still Young, Anna Aaron, The Amber Unit, etc.). The album was mastered by Oli Bösch in Bern, Switzerland.
The five loop-based tracks take the listener three quarters of an hour into a world full of bowed, plucked, beaten and electronic sounds. The music takes time to develop and create moods. As the title of the album suggests, landscapes and spaces are built, opened and enlivened. Nevertheless, lasting melodies and simple grooves can be found.
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
I have many, many influences in musical terms, be they classical composers, minimalists, electronic artists, folksy instrumentalists or many alternative, indie, rock and pop bands. I find it very difficult to highlight someone. At the moment I find other influences especially in my everyday life as a family man, musician and music teacher – when I have time, I like to read some Nordic crime thriller or any exciting literature.
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
NEUHAUS layers and creates sound worlds with violin, double bass and drummachines. Not only does he loop the melodies of the violin and the deep lines of the double bass, but he also uses various percussive possibilities of the two instruments. The musician completes this sound with natural live percussion and electronic drum beats.
Since my music is loop-based and I do everything alone as a soloist, you can’t expect any quick changes. It takes time and the changes are built up slowly. Maybe it can be compared to a train journey. You move around in a landscape that changes a bit over and over again. If you are willing to make this journey, even if it is not so fast, then this is the right music for you.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
Books: Roberto Bolano: 2666 // Thomas Mann: Dr. Faustus // and some Mankell: Wallander
Albums – only 3?: Bowie: Blackstar // Kronos Quartett plays Steve Reich (e.g. Different Trains) // The Amber Unit: Fear no Giant // and for sure some Beatles…
No movies, but more music… (or an Instrument)
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
I love playing live and can’t get enough of it. The situations and the audience are always different and I never know how the concert will turn out. Also improvisation makes a big part of my music and so no concert is like the other. And I think that’s really great!
Of course I also like the studio work, trying out the different sounds and microphones, playing with technical possibilities, rooms, etc.. In the studio I like it most of all when you take your time and only get into music during a few days. That also makes me very happy.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
We had some funny stories with my bands, but with Neuhaus I haven’t been on the road that long, so there aren’t any funny stories yet that would be worth telling…
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
I like all my tracks very much, otherwise I wouldn’t have put them on the album. Which one is unique now is difficult to decide. There is a big difference between the live concerts and the album. Live “Tanz der Pelerinen” touches the audience the most with its fast tempo and overflowing but very classical ending. On the album maybe “Badgers Walk” with its nice plucked accompaniment and the cool groove is the most popular with the audience. But I like “Your Love” almost best in its simplicity – and many friends of mine like “Slightliy Movendo” very much with its steady structure and easily danceable rhythm.
Book me for a concert – then you can decide for yourself! 🙂
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
I will play as many concerts as possible and record my second album “Scapes & Spaces, Volume 2”. I will continue to develop my music, but I don’t know yet whether I want to focus on the electronic or acoustic elements of my music. I can play around with those for a long time and there are still many possibilities, which I’m really looking forward to.
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
Photo credits: Andrea Neuhaus
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
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