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Joe Volk


Bristol is the one town in Great Britain that shows the most significant sound since the TripHop-Revolution in the middle ninenties. The one town that stands for a unique artistic freedom since the early days of Massive Attack, Portishead and Tricky. Singer and guitarist JOE VOLK grew right into this scene. Although he originally didn’t have anything to do with the electronic music, the stilistic freedom of reference as well as the courage to be different, which is typical for Bristol, is documented in his music. Whether VOLK acts as singer or guitarist für Hard- and Postrock bands, whether he composes film scores for short movies or background music for BBC-documentaries, or whether he releases a new solo album which finds its base in Singer-/Songwriter but drifts off into a mystical, orchestral world: one can always hear, that JOE VOLK never only settles for a good composition, but that every released song has to have a clear sound aesthetic vision with suprising instrumentations. This is for sure an earning of the progressive Bristol music scene, to which VOLK belonged to before he moved to Switzerland.

Some protagonists of these „Bristol-Sounds“ belong to his closest group of friends, who still support him with his new solo album „Happenings and Killings“. Geoff Barrow: mastermind, composer and drummer of Portishead is not only a close friend, but the discoverer of VOLKs solo work: In 2009 he released VOLKs solo debut „Derwent Waters Saint“ with his new founded label ‚Invada‘. On his new album Barrow also helped dynamically to equip VOLKs unusual compositions with a quantum of self-will. Geoff’s colleague Adrian Utley, guitarist of Portishead, acts as a co-songwriter on „Happenings and Killings“, and helped the record to such an original sound, that it animated the NDR zu compare VOLKs songs to M.C. Escher, staged by a charming reservation of a Nick Drake.

JOE VOLK laid the fundament for such a self-will in the past 15 years as a singer-songwriter. Until 2007, he was the frontman of the band Gonga, who renewed the classical Hardrock and expanded it with Stoner Rock and Alternative Metal. Many journals predicted a big future for the band, but after an album and two EPs, VOLK wanted to move on. It seemed impossible to replace VOLK as a frontman, which is why Gonga is an instrumental trio ever since. VOLK found the formation, in which he was able to act out his mystical sounds and his unconventional song structures, in the internationally celebrated Postrock band Crippled Black Phoenix. Besides, he experienced the perfect formation founded by multi instrumentalist Justin Greaves: next to the solid members, the band lived on the studio, of the ideas and impulses of many collaborators who incorporated their ideas. Abstract sound worlds, who end up completely new and unexpected, result, just like the seven sound carriers, whom VOLK recorded with Crippled Black Phoenix.

All these experiences reflect in JOE VOLKs new solo album „Happenings and Killings“. From fragile acoustic pieces to interlaced eletronical arrangements, to opulent string recordings, whom VOLK composed together with Ben Salisbury. The record goes on an exciting journey – the acoustic guitar and the voice of the extraordinary musician always in the centre. The music is for listening, for letting go, for giving in to your emotions, triggered by the courageous arrangements. Music like a „stream of unconsciousness“, where many different elements complete each other, powerful as well as unseizable.

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Past Dates
Date City Venue
DE - Berlin Maze (verschoben)
DE - Hamburg Knust (verschoben)
DE - Düsseldorf Zakk Club (verschoben)
DE - Frankfurt Zoom (verschoben)
DE - Rees-Haldern Haldern Pop Bar (verschoben)
DE - Leipzig Neues Schauspiel
DE - Berlin MAZE
DE - Hamburg Knust Café
DE - Düsseldorf FFT
DE - Haldern Haldern Pop Bar

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