LOVE-SONGS & U. SCHÜTTE
14.05. CONNE ISLAND
Hamburg’s post-kraut-electro trio Love-Songs and Ulf Schütte (Datashock, Phantom Horse, Little Whirls) have formed a group named Love-Songs & U. Schütte for the duration of one long-playing record.
This body of work bears the modest title [Spannende Musik] – an attribution which sounds not in the least bit pejorative to those with no skin in the game: “Yes, it really is exciting music!”
The adjective pinned to the music may go deeper: “spannend” can also express tension, in this case not to convey a mood or a tense thriller, but in a physical sense.
The musical foursome’s nocturnal world tour begins (and ends?) in a shamanistic factory hall with no clocks. Rigorous polyrhythms are accentuated by dexterously frayed edges. Radio wave rituals are revealed by flickering fluorescent lamps, a tribalistic screw box is in danger of falling from a conveyor belt.
The dualism of minimalistic asceticism and long-distance free improvisations create that selfsame tension which lends the spacious music of Tony Conrad, Joshua Abrams or the kosmische, yet earthed music of Pulse Emitter et al, such an original voice and atmosphere. One must search far and wide to find space and movement interlock so seamlessly through such meticulous layering and barely perceptible shifts in order to maintain the tension alluded to earlier.
The purely descriptive titles of the individual tracks, lifted from annotations of music in film sub-titles, lead us further astray than we might have first thought – which brings us back to the actual meaning of tension and what it is capable of evoking on a semantic and aesthetic level, something which contemporary music painfully lacks: a certain unreliability.