With their recently released album Soft Ware, NEWMEN walk the line between krautrock, wave and pop. Using a heavily saturated industry to their advantage by unashamedly incorporating sounds from a wide pool of influences, the band are letting this non-conformist attitude speak in the music. We caught up with them to see what music they were listening to when writing the album.
Sonic Youth – ‘Rain On Tin’
Even if Thurston Moore turned out to be an asshole (some of his political views just hurt, and Kim Gordon has always been cooler anyway), the first Sonic Youth album of the new millennium still is a prime example of how wonderful music can be when melodies meet the experimental power of the four brilliant New Yorkers.
With the album Murray Street, Sonic Youth for the first time teamed up with musician and producer Jim O’Rourke. One thing, however, makes this record so special: melodies that want to get stuck develop a unique charm where they would not be expected. Murray Street is a classic “grower”, created under the impressions of the attacks of September 11, 2001, and perhaps because of its sensitivity and calm, it is one of the most interesting works of the band. The guitar tuning for ‘Rain on Tin’ also found its way into our music, and is used on several songs on Soft Ware.
Tangerine Dream – ‘Bilbao 1976’
We recently re-discovered the Berlin based krautrock band Tangerine Dream. Especially the bootleg recordings of their live concerts in the mid-70s are deeply mindblowing. If you listen to the 1976 concert in Bilbao, you get flashed with innovative and trippy soundscapes, that were made at a time when the synthesizer and sequenced-pattern-music were in their childhoods. We guess that’s how Berghain supposed to sound like in the days of our parents.
Valerie Dore – ‘Get Closer (Gerd Janson Edit)’
A wonderful remix of Valerie Dore by Gerd Janson, who we know from the Frankfurt club Robert Johnson. There is rarely wave music where the coldness of the soft and sparkling synthesizers fits so perfectly with the warmness of the melody. This remix by Gerd really exposes the essence of this great tune and is pushing its spirit into a new light.
Tolouse Low Trax – ‘Studies In Drama’
When the heirs of Düsseldorfs krautrock explored African instruments and further world music, combining it with already emerged electronics, a very unique sound was born. One of the most influential persons shaping this sound is certainly Detlef Weinrich, known as Tolouse Low Trax. He is part of Kreidler and Toresch (together with Viktoria Wehrmeister) and musical chief of the Salon des Amateurs. His sound takes a very radical approach towards a slow but very dense rhythm with lots of tension. Very original and very unique!
Sea Moya – ‘New Past’
Sea Moya is the band/project of the producer of our new album. Elias (Förster) and his bandmates packed their stuff and moved to Montreal, Canada. We love the way the guys create their sound world. It’s always chilled, trippy and it’s got a very easy feeling, without being trivial at all. Their music is complex in such an elegant way. They just released a new song a few weeks ago. ‘New Past’ will be featured on their upcoming album. Summer is coming!
Soft Ware is out now via ferryhouse productions and can be streamed here.