Binder und Krieglstein’s Reconstructions

Binder und Krieglstein -  New Weird Austria
Binder und Krieglstein – New Weird Austria
Binder und Krieglstein

New Weird Austria (Essay Recordings, 2010)

With a distinct departure from his debut album, Alles Verloren, produced by Shantel, the opening track has the eerie feeling of watching Punch and Judy on the set of the Eraserhead movie, very uncomfortable. Will there be any break from this distorted world of nightmarish evocations, where traditional Austrian folk is broken down and reconstructed in a new global village dominated by the Silicon Valley monopolies? Apparently not, there’s an overall theme of brass bands playing in the distance welcoming the fairground to a town where people no longer speak, they just babble like babies, whilst crude programmed percussion grinds away relentlessly.

There is a feeling that the social world as we know it is spiraling out of control. I had an epiphany moment on the sixth track in, ‘Three Strikes’ featuring Didi Bruckmayr. “Destroy the past, spam the present, File sharing is killing music, you tube and myspace are making millions from content, please search URL….” Perhaps this is a manifesto against the power of the internet and those Silicon Valley monopolies. I can hear a punk protest song struggling to be heard.

Perhaps another clue to appreciating this album is in the title, could it be a nod to New Weird America? A quick reference to Wikipedia reveals the following, “another primary inspiration is outsider music, often played by technically naïve and/or socially estranged musicians,”….mmmmm maybe we’re getting somewhere with this. Perhaps, when the artist divides his double barreled surname into the two distinct entities of Binder “und” Krieglstein we could be hearing the audio equivalent of a split personality, a musician with a punk ethos redefining Austrian folk music.

Binder und Krieglstein pull in an array of fellow Austrian musicians to feature on the album, Makki, Didi Bruckmaier, Mieze Medusa, Wilfred, Karl Grunling, Heimo Mitterer, Molto Mosso and Christian Fuchs so the album must have something going for it…but I just don’t get it. Either, they have all lost a grip on reality and are all so far up their own posterior (to put the phrase politely) or it is a brilliant work of genius. You the listener will have to decide.

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Author: Jill Turner

Jill Turner contributes to Songlines Magazine, World Music Central and is on the fRoots critics albums of the year panel. Her radio show GondwanaSound broadcasts on Sheffield Live! 93.2FM to the fourth largest city in the UK and is carried on both Radio Groovalizacion and African Internet Radio.


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