Mario Batkovic does for the accordion something like what Colin Stetson does for the saxophone: he opens everyone’s favourite wheezy-bag instrument up to new sonic possibilities. Solo statement Mario Batkovic uses extended techniques and minimalist structures to create a really captivating of accordion compositions. CD / double LP release on Invada.
Vinyl Double LP £23.99 INV165LP
2LP on Invada.
- Includes download code
CD £9.99 INV165CD
Gatefold CD on Invada.
Drone accordionist Mario Batkovic faces a world glaring at him on this self-titled record that posits his instrument in realms of experimentation it has perhaps never before experienced. We’ve seen minimalists strain their record beyond comprehension a few times before, most notably in Tony Conrad’s violin jams and Colin Stetson’s lightning-fast saxophony, and Batkovic could easily fall into that same landscape: he creates what sounds like a myriad of sounds at once, playing furiously with a disregard for pauses, meshing melody and emotion into one long contemplation.
It’s quite stunning and quite unsettling -- opener “Quatere” strongly recalls the pace and energy of Stetson, but its dramatic sound is as gothic as Anna von Hausswolff playing her pantomimic organ. “Gravis” enters the gruelling drone territory of the recent Accident du Travail record, lurching and leering with momentary clips of percussion. Much like Stetson, though, what brings all these weird tangents together is their love of drama, their ability to sound storyboarded -- “Inuente” has a pulse and builds into its high-octave melodies from there. Batkovic generates contradictory polyrhythms to make the piece sound both in the midst of desperation and at the point of hopelessness.
This record will likely fascinate anyone who listens to it: it’s amazing Batkovic is getting such an intense and doomy sound out of this particular instrument, and he has to spend a lot of time setting the scene for it to work, sometimes. “Eloquens” is a marriage of grumbling low end and shimmering high notes, which come together to sound gloriously cinematic. The fact that it works and sounds good is testament to his talents, of course -- you will likely not hear any of your accordion-playing friends making this happen.
10/10 Gérald Wathelet 4th April 2017
Mario Batkovic... a pure jewel!
So intense, so powerful, so great!
From the 1st track to the last one, you'll travel into an amazing land, it will shake your mind for the next 1000 years!
Restrictus is my favourite track, i can't stop playing it, again & again... Quatere is a monster, too! Eloquens has a so incredible finish...
I order a ticket to Watch him live in berlin @ the end of April, i want a big thrill, that man is a Virtuose!
Probably one of my purest LP... Go buy it!
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