Kettel vs Secede [NL]

First duo live appearance worldwide



Reimer Eising (1982), inhabitant of the city of Groningen in the Netherlands, has been a busy man since his first 7" record on the Planet Mu label in 2003. Along his path there were several ep's and albums on Neo Ouija, Kracfive, the Rotterdam based DuB label (as a sublabel of the infamous Clone Recordings) and U-cover. It's hard to be a follower of the electronic musicscene and not having heard a Kettel record: whether it is the sad-toned but lighthearted playfulness of his earlier DuB and Kracfive work, the more atmospheric, romantically glowing warm ambient of his Volleyed Iron album on the U-Cover label, or his newest, more uptempo, even occasionally acid-driven music for his befriended homecity Sending Orbs label. A few references: think Aphex Twin, Plaid, or think Squarepusher; but not for too long, because Eising has definitely been developping his own style in those years, or should we say: camouflage his influences.

Newest work include remixes for Machine Drum and Coppe, two cd's for the abovementioned Sending Orbs label (of which his latest, pecuriarly entitled My Dogan, is obviously his strongest work up to date in a over 70 minute running cd, flirting with acid, ambient and especially melody, that is possibly his first album that really works as a whole) and a striking remix for the legendary Depeche Mode collective on Mute Records. Future work include a re-issue of his massively acclaimed Trough Friendly Waters album in Japan and new work for Sending Orbs.

The Kettel liveshow recipe may differ a little from his releases, but also finds melody as the biggest ingredient of his brews. Apart from that, there will be tougher beats, tougher acid and a sample from a (tough) elephant. Recent liveshows on the Monegros Festival in Spain, various shows in Berlin (accompanying Plaid and Modeselektor to name a couple) have proven Kettel isn't merely working in the head, but also on the dancefloor. Yes!


Lennard van der Last (1984; Nijverdal/The Netherlands) shook hands with his computer just a little while after he was liberated from the kindergarten: at the wondrous age of 8 he started out using trackers to create his own electronic music. Before that joyful encounter he loved taking control of his brother's keyboard; more than the piano lessons he perfunctorily attended to at that time. The piano lessons ended prematurely, but never dampened his enthusiasm to make music. At the age of 12 Lennard experimented with synthesizers and other musical gear. Old tapes from that era prove his remarkable talent for atmosphere and melody.

As time went by, Lennard made some likeminded friends in online communities, resulting in a contact with established electronic artist Proem, who recognized his skills, introduced him to the Merck label and asked him for a remix on the minidisc-label N5md (2001). And like it's common in the electronica-scene, the internet played a leading role offering the possibilities of getting and smoothly staying in contact with labels and other artists. This way, Lennard stayed in contact with Merck and two remixes for Machinedrum followed. These tracks induced the label to ask Lennard for a Secede full length album, now known as Bye Bye Gridlock Traffic (Merck 2003). Although still unnoticed in the Netherlands , Secede stole many hearts mainly in Japan and the USA . (Unfortunately his obscurity in his motherland is no surprise; staying unnoticed in the Netherlands as an electronic musician is as easy as it is for one to find a hair on Chewbacca.) This album is a journey through numerous places and surroundings. It gives a good view on his talent for melody, atmosphere and sampling, but to cut short: in essence this album is enchanting and outstanding. From the intricate mix of movie-samples and layered melodic prettiness of the intro, via the gruesome highlight "Crave&Fall" (a work that is devastatingly uncomfortable), to the sheer, crystal beauty of "Age Tandems": this is an album that can be rediscovered several times.

Next is a long period of silence. Lennard is one of those reclusive artists, only leaving his house to shop for wine, maintaining a thorough relationship with the pizza deliverer. Now primarily focused on his laptop, new tracks kept on coming.

His friendship with fellow electronica artist Kettel resulted in a connection with the newly started Sending Orbs label from The Netherlands. This label received his newest tracks with great acclaim, giving him the opportunity to work on an album. The cd, called Tryshasla came out in June 2005, and miraculously tops Bye Bye Gridlock Traffic by showing even more detail and unity. Sending Orbs seems to be not only a good, professional place for Secede to release, but can even be called a good addition to what this music stands for: look at the wonderful artwork and you'll understand. Lennard calls Tryshasla the last dream of a person dying, drifting off to a fantasy land called Sanda. A peaceful death, indeed. Although this might sound a little eerie, the album has plenty of hopeful, inspirational moments. A fairytale sometimes referred to as "a work of Tolkien-esque proportions".

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