How You Swallowed your Anger is the new single from Urban Folk outfit Black Sea Dahu. Picking up where the band’s critically acclaimed White Creatures LP left off, this syrupy ballad goes even deeper into the complex anatomy of a relationship, and specifically a break-up. The emphasis here is not on what the lover lost, but rather what she can’t give. And when you get the context, it’s crushing!

The arrangement is stripped down to a pulsating acoustic guitar, a wandering upright bass, lush strings and a voice that appears so close to your ear, that you feel like you alone in the world are privy to this late night confession. The song is also extremely hypnotic. It holds your attention like the flickering flame of a single candle lighting up a pitch black room, and while you cling to its warm light, blinded by its spell, you know damn well that it will be extinguished soon. 

How You Swallowed your Anger is the first song from the forthcoming EP entitled No Fire in the Sand, due to drop this fall. 

If there is a way to describe the affect of us transitioning from the physical realm into the digital / virtual (as individuals and as a culture), using music, this EP would be that. Vertigo spells. The obliteration of a fixed point of view. A mild sense of disaffect offset by extreme wonder at the encounter of the beautiful uncanny. Anxiety. Panic attacks. Euphoria. Distortions of perspective, space, self and body. The feeling of being omnipresent and dissolving / drowning in an infinite, glowing, vibrating architecture of liquid data – simultaneously. Being subject and object all at once. All of this is captured in the highest emotional resolution possible on Rigid, the stunning 4-song post-techno / post-punk / noise/ neo new wave / art pop EP from trans-media artist, composer and vocalist Rosa Anschütz. 

When I listen to a track, I love that it can sometimes intensify a moment or kicks me out of reality and replaces it with a non-place. – Rosa Anschütz

The material for the EP was written in 2018, between Berlin and Vienna, the two cities that Rosa considers her temporary homes. What she brought to the Hiti Papa studio in Kreuzberg, Berlin – where she worked with producer Jan Wagner – was a series of instrumental sketches and “lyrics as a series of daily snapshots”, the latter written and stored on her phone. During the sessions these rudimentary drafts were transformed into elaborate, orchestral, synth-driven, highly dramatic arrangements – the type of music that is so charged with acute emotion that it demands a visceral response from the listener and, possibly, even complete surrender. 

Feeling anxiety and numbness are both important to me, and I face them often in my daily life. It’s my duty to explore them and find their origin so that I can choose to overcome them or keep them, depending on the situation. I think that this is a way of learning something about myself. – Rosa Anschütz

Rigid is a personal EP. It’s a patchwork made of daily notes, dreams, nightmares and loose ruminations on life –  stitched together with analog synths and thick, cavernous reverbs. It’s also a great example of the type of music that humanises the sounds of machines, in many ways harking back to the beginning of electronica, event though nothing outside of the actual feel is vintage here. The production is warm, fleshy, with carefully sculpted spaces. The vocals are mesmeric, oscillating between spoken word, singing and “voice as strings”. All of this, sum total, makes for the perfect (non)place to get lost in. Think of a rigid body thrown into the torrents of a stream of consciousness, it could be you.

Keep On Running is the title of the debut LP from Berlin-based Swiss Avant Pop trio Vsitor. It’s an 11 song meditation on the idea of movement and change, especially in regards to the complex emotion-based constellations that we form with other individuals. It covers the physical, mental and emotive –  abrupt and disruptive, but also the subtle to the point of being barely perceptible. Needless to say, the record is a very mindful exploration of the human condition. 

The entire material found here was compiled over a period of two years. The writing / recording process could be described as nonlinear and was very much akin to our current modes of communication, with tons of files being shared  between band members and simultaneous / parallel sessions running on the same songs, in different studios. The actual compositions were mostly born out of single sounds or mere textures, rather than from clearly defined melody lines or chord progressions. Once a fascinating sound artefact was isolated, it would then be used as a springboard for a composition. The production duties were mostly handled by David Koch (guitar, vox, synth bass) and Valentin Liechti (drums, programming, vox). Lead vocalist Lea Maria Fries stepped in once the ideas became more concrete. At that point, she would match words and story lines to the emotional undercurrents running through the latest versions of the songs, as if the objective was to outline movie scenes to a rough draft of a soundtrack. After the vocals were ready, the band would reconvene at the studio to flesh out the arrangements and to record, but the product of this session would eventually also undergo this entire process. This should explain the puzzle-like, unorthodox arrangements which are present throughout this long-player. In the end, the band recorded around 40 sketches out of which eleven songs made the final cut. 

The sound on Keep On Running is extremely textured, warm, brash and very physical, as if all the analog gear which was used by the band – and there was plenty of it – had somehow managed to transmute mere air vibrations into something grainy, granular and almost tactile. In general, these songs have a dusky quality about them – washed over with reverbs and countless guitar pedal effects. The vocals swim in this amorphous space, breathy, fragile, direct and intimate – gorgeous  –  spilling out of the speakers like a cascade of melodies wrapped in gossamer noise. If anything, this record is about tension and the affects of distributing it with ease and a seasoned fluency. In this sense, this debut is very much like a great movie or a well constructed novel, or just simply the type of Pop music that doesn’t stoop to preset-level tropes and as a result really takes you on a transformative journey.

Vsitor are a Swiss Avant Pop trio based in Berlin. Their music is an amalgamation elements of Slow Core, Jazz, Experimental Electronica, Noise and No Wave. They are: Lea Maria Fries (vocals, synth bass), David Koch (guitar, vocals, synths, bass) and Valentin Liechti (drums, beats, bass, vocals).