31 May 2017, 20:00
Central House of Architects . Address: Moscow, Granatny per., 7
In the early 2017, the Kommersant daily had told its readers to keep a close eye on the Moscow-based trio Fogh Depot. That was very sound advice as there are very few projects such as Fogh Depot in Russia. By combining the elements of dark jazz in the spirit of Bohren & Der Club of Gore, neo-classical minimalism and intellectual electronica, the trio has been playing intriguing instrumental music since 2014. This music is cohabited by vividly drawn melodies and unusual sound textures, energetic beats and complex embroglios, unpredictable improvisation and austere composition, classical instruments and technological innovations. Each piece by Fogh Depot is like a thriller, whose insinuating tempo and melancholic mood create tension and show off the obligatory culmination.
Fogh Depot is much better known internationally than at home. The Moscow-based trio, which consists of Alexei Gusakov (percussion, samplers), Mikhail Klimov (double-bass, grand piano) and Heinrich Thomas (wind instruments, synthesizers) was discovered by the German label Denovali, which welcomes the musicians who search for the connecting link between the trends of the new age and the traditions of jazz and academic music. The musicians released two albums with the label — the debut S/T and Turmalinurm, which came out late last year. Turmaline is a jewellery stone, which is found in nature in a great variety of colours, and capable of changing them further depending on the angle of light. A comparison with the multifaced turmaline is the most fitting metaphor for the multilayered and constantly shape-shifting music of Fogh Depot, which reveals itself in new light each time that you listen to it.
You may remember the elastic voice of Delhia de France from the striking videos and albums of the electro pop band Pentatones, which was considered the German equivalent of The Knife. Pentatones, established by the student artists from the Bauhaus University, manifested its aspiration to embody Wagner’s ideas of total art (Gesamtkunstwerk) in pop music. The band made videos that resembled art house movies and gave concerts that resembled performances fronted by the beautiful singer. One of the band’s artistic acts stirred up a stormy discussion in the media: the cover of the band’s album, depicting Delhia de France with a black circle over her face, made many people question whether this was a real tattoo. Musicians claim that they used this image to ask society, how far does the contemporary artist and musician have to go in order to attract attention to his work?
In her solo project, Delhia de France continues to use the art approach to pop music, but she has completely overhauled the sound, having made it even more delicate and refined. Her musical partner these days is the acclaimed German producer Robot Koch, who has worked with Jahcoozi, Modeselektor, Norah Jones and Max Richter. Koch encases the singer’s delicate voice in futuristic electronic-and-acoustic settings, where powerful beat runs along the crystal chimes of the harp, which impart a touch of mysteriousness and magic on the music. In 2014, Delhia de France released her debut mini album Suavium, which produced comparisons to Bjork, and following the release she traveled across Europe and America with concerts, performing at such festivals as SXSW (USA) and Splash (DE), and becoming a regular guest at the media art gatherings. An appearance by Delhia de France, who keeps loyal to the principles of Gesamtkunstwerk, is not just a succession of glimmering and shimmering hymns for the combination of voice, harp and changing rhythms, but also an intimate stage performance with eccentric costumes.
This will be the musician’s first concert in Russia.