AB goes to church with an exquisite neo-classical double-bill
AB goes to church
After the successful (and also promptly sold-out) concerts by Stars of the Lid (2016) and the tribute to Jóhann Jóhannsson (2018) in the Béguinage Church (officially: The Church of Saint John the Baptist at the Béguinage), AB heads back for a third time to the place that once housed the largest Beguine community in the country.
Location: the Béguinage Church (Begijnhof 2062, 1000 Brussels) is located barely 9 minutes walking distance (or: 750 meters according to Google Maps) from AB.
Martin Kohlstedt (solo) (d)
German piano virtuoso Martin Kohlstedt is often – not surprisingly, rather predictably – mentioned in the same breath as that other contemporary neo-classical hero: Nils Frahm. On his first visit to London, The Daily Telegraph aptly summarised: ‘The music’s repetitive patterns and modal harmonies sometimes reminded one of other music often described as hypnotic, from Ryuichi Sakamoto to Ludovico Einaudi. What sets Kohlstedt apart is the undercurrent of anxiety, and the occasional moments of grandeur.’
He created a wonderful diptych in the form of ‘Tag’ (from 2012) and ‘Nacht’ (from 2014). Then with ‘Strom’ (from 2017) and the just recently released ‘Ströme’ he certainly links the album titles to each other. He recorded his latest album with the 70-member GewandhausChor from Leipzig and it is quite definitely his magnum opus. He comes to the Béguinage Church all on his ownsome.
Echo Collective ‘special project’
The bond between AB and Brussels’ classically schooled ensemble Echo Collective is unbeatable. They recently served as ‘backing band’ in AB: for both pianist Joep Beving and for living-legend Blixa Bargeld. But, in particular: their musical response to AB’s request to make ‘Radiohead’s ‘Amnesiac’ sound like it was a classical masterpiece’ can best be described as a … uh … ‘classical masterpiece’. It provided them with an international release via Berlin’s!K7 Records and also shows in London’s prestigious Royal Albert Hall & the Philharmonie de Paris (at the request of Nils Frahm).