As Popkomm fell slowly to earth in flames, rolling over and over as it plummeted through the clouds, so Berlin Music Week was strapping on its wings and preparing to launch itself from a nearby cliff. And now it has landed among us with a great flapping of wings and a bit of dragon breath thrown in.
Poetic, eh? Been practising. Not really.
Anyway, so Berlin Music Week is among us, now THE music industry get-together in Europe, and not only are there going to be thousands of label people / bookers / publishers / agents / managers thrumming around like lots of busy people with something to do and not in any way waiting until the free drinks bar opens, no, there are also a whole hell of a lot of musicians in the city, afoot as only musicians can be, and of course playing a whole hell of a lot of gigs.
The highlight will be the two-night showcase of independent bands from Berlin and further afield taking place in a variety of venues. All you gotta do is pay 15€ and you have access to a hundred gigs on both Wednesday and Thursday night.. At least a hundred. Probably more. And your 15€ guarantees you entry to every club that’s running the showcase.
Now I get to tell you about what we’ve sussed out are the highlights, them being:
Alin Coen Band: With their brand new album “We’re Not the Ones We Thought We Were” making waves, Alin Coen, named after their lead singer, are breaking out. They’ve been around since 2007. In 2009 they supported Jakob Dylan, Starsailor, Philipp Poisel, Regina Spektor.
Simian Ghost is an alternative pop act from Sandviken/Gävle, Sweden, consisting of Sebastian Arnström, Erik Klinga and Mathias Zachrisson. It was initiated as a recording project by Sebastian Arnström. He released one full-length album, Infinite Traffic Everywhere, which was received with blog praise and excellent reviews. It topped the critics chart in Sweden and was voted record of the year by the readers at Dagensskiva.se. Six months after the release of said record he released a 7 song EP called Lovelorn.
Since their 2011 debut hey have already shared stages with among others Mount Kimbie, SBTRKT, Niki & The Dove and Active Child.
Simian Ghost released their second full length album written by all three members of the band; Youth in early 2012 and it was met once again with great reviews. As the first Swedish act since ABBA they got a lead review in The Times and The Guardian has called it “an early contender for the album of the year”
Mighty Oaks: Mighty Oaks: three young men, from three countries, combining three part harmonies, resulting in one unique sound. The Berlin based indie-folk band comprised of Ian Hooper (US), Claudio Donzelli (Italy), and Craig Saunders (UK) writes honest, authentic and emotionally driven songs – acoustic guitars and mandolins at the centre of their sound, layers of electric guitars creating space and depth, rounded off through solid bass lines and the heartbeat of a simple drum. The music sets the perfect scene for the lyrics, which often draw their inspiration from the Pacific Northwest, the birthplace of Hooper. In 2010 the band released a self-produced self-titled EP, recorded in Donzelli’s apartment, which has since gone on to earn them over 63,000 fans and 370,000 plays on SoundCloud. They’ve supported some biggish names, and opened for Kings of Leon at the Waldbühne in Berlin. Their debut studio EP “Just One Day” was released on July 5th.
Sebastian Lind: A young Danish singer/songwriter. How does Denmark do it? They keep throwing talent at us lke they’ve got more than they can deal with themselves. Sebastian Lind balances melancholy sounds, an almost aching voice, electronic elements and a bit of soul. One to listen for!