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European Endless: 12 is a motorik beat-inspired charity album benefitting the Irish Refugee Council featuring Arvo Party, The Bonk, Fixity & more (first listen)

European Endless: 12 is a motorik beat-inspired charity album benefitting the Irish Refugee Council featuring Arvo Party, The Bonk, Fixity & more (first listen)

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European Endless: 12 is a new charity compilation album out tomorrow featuring Arvo Party, The Bonk, Fixity and more conceived by Will Cagney Murphy of Blank Screen TVs after 12 months of mostly lockdown life to ask the artists to create a 12-minute piece of music driven by the motorik beat that became the calling card of German krautrock acts Neu! and Can.

A single piece of music, 12 minutes in length and driven by the motorik beat – described by its creator, Neu’s Klaus Dinger as being “essentially about life, how you have to keep moving, get on and stay in motion.”

That is it. No key, no set bpm. No set genre. No set form. The contributions could be single continuous pieces of music, random snippets of songs Frankensteined together, or even poetic interludes, it doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is the beat and the length. One minute for every month of the year that we’ve been in lockdown. The only points where this structure is broken are two brief interludes lasting 365 seconds. The beat represents the fact that while we’ve all decided to go different routes musically, we’re all chained to the same rhythm. All of our stories are unique, but they’re all structurally the same. Every high, every low, light, dark, and all the shades in between, are all just points on a shared sine wave that moves on endlessly. For the listener, it can take on the function of active or ambient music – something to let time slip by and be mindful of yourself.

The artists who responded to the brief and feature here include Belfast producer Arvo Party, experimental project The Bonk, former O Emperor musician Paul Savage’s Whozyerman?, Danny Carroll of Shrug Life’s latest project Cynthia Access Point, Dan Walsh-led psychedelic free jazz outfit Fixity, Belfast synth wizard Aileen McKenna, aka This Ship Argo, while Kopfkino is a new collaboration between members of Junk Drawer, Electric Octopus, Space Shepherds, Nomadic Rituals while new faces include experimental hip hop of Roly, dream pop band L.C.F. and the “manic electronic fury of homoterribilis and Julia McConway’s intense spoken word.”

There is wide variety of music and sound, texture and mood, throughout the 12 tracks:


Have a listen to it today and buy the compilation on Bandcamp, and all proceeds will go towards the Irish Refugee Council.

Artwork is by Booker Prize-nominated translator, Frank Wynne.

The foundation beat is fundamentally very simple and what each of these people has extrapolated from it, and the context of lockdown, is incredible. Arvo Party has delivered a pure undiluted slice of mid-70s krautrock wrapped up in the warm glow of modernity, while Phil Christie’s The Bonk create a long-form French pop-esque composition lands “somewhere between Cluster and ‘What’s Another Year’”.  Blank Screen TVs used it to meditate on the endlessness of grief surrounding losing a child, while Danny Carroll explores the quiet clawing desperation that comes from sitting in the flat on the North Circular Road for the guts of twelve months. Formed for this compilation, Kopfkino used the opportunity to come together for a one-time aleatoric collaboration between Stevie Lennox & Rory Dee from Junk Drawer, Tyrell Black from Electric Octopus, Gareth Hill of Space Shepherds, and bandmate Peter ‘Frodo’ Hunter, also of Nomadic Rituals, to wonderfully exploratory and undulating effect. Whozyerman finds comfort and warmth in the depths of digital despair, while This Ship Argo extracts from the motorik idea a subdued synthesised pulse in her soundtrack for an imagined train journey. Each act stands uniquely apart but are joined in their DNA by a simple four-four beat stretching out into infinity.

Tracklisting

  1. Arvo Party – Kraftfahrzeug
  2. The Bonk – Ten Thousand Steps
  3. Whozyerman? – Months On End
  4.  L.C.F. – Pat McDonagh t/a Supermacs vs McDonald’s International
  5. Roly – Holy Motorik
  6. Homoterribilis. – all theft is art
  7. Julia McConway – Four Walls
  8. Cynthia Access Point – February
  9. Blank Screen TVs – Apple Tree
  10. Kopfkino – Kopfkino
  11. Fixity – Ask Yourself
  12. This Ship Argo – East to the North Coast