The Sound Cafe
Germany's Boundary Bashing Monika Roscher Bigband Release New Single & Video Ahead Of Upcoming Album
By Stevie Connor. Photo Credit: Emanuel Klempa
Monika Roscher Bigband (MRB) is comprised of 18 musicians and exists somewhere between math-rock, prog-jazz, avant-pop and experimental electronics.
Having issued the epic and uptempo '8 Prinzessinnen' (8 Princesses) Video as an opening salvo from their upcoming third album at the beginning of February, they followed it up with the comparatively glacial 'Starlight Nightcrash’ Video at the end of that month.
A new single entitled ‘A Taste Of The Apocalypse’ Video is available now, with Roscher herself explaining that “the apocalypse alluded to is not one of mayhem and destruction, but rather one of change beyond recognition. The song asks urgent questions suggested by various technological breakthroughs that make it necessary to rethink and perhaps redefine what makes us human. Musically, however, it embraces an optimistic take on our digital-looking future, wide-eyed, full of pathos and with heroic trumpets leading the way!"
Formed in Munich in 2011, MRB soon made waves with thrilling live performances and the inventive ideas of Roscher, their founder, singer, guitarist and conductor. Their first two albums, ‘Failure in Wonderland’ (2012) and ‘Of Monsters and Birds’ (2016), were met with acclaim in Germany, where Jazz Echo proclaimed them ‘Newcomer of the Year’, but they also caused a stir internationally, with the US magazine DownBeat naming them as ‘Rising Stars’.
Virtuosos as individuals, as MRB they are a close-knit collective who feed on musical challenges set during recording sessions, while each of their rousing live shows is a celebration of the musical freedom and inspiration they offer each other. A brilliant big band that constantly surprises and reinvents itself, MRB love the adventure and are driven by a hunger for musical symbiosis.
Their upcoming third album, ‘Witchy Activities And The Maple Death’, is stunning proof of how fresh and exhilarating MRB sound today. Superbly recorded, it achieves a breathtaking balance of intimate fragility and symphonic intensity that lets the full sonic spectrum of a big band scream and shine in every colour imaginable. Roscher’s tension-filled and intricately detailed compositions evoke otherworldly landscapes that at times enchant with their elegiac beauty, but at others wreak havoc like the unleashed frenzy of a witches’ sabbath thick with haze.
WITCHY ACTIVITIES AND THE MAPLE DEATH
1 8 Prinzessinnen
3 Witches Brew
The Summoning | Moon Is Melting | The Brew | The Woods |
Dance Of The Sleepy Spirits | Return Of The Witches
4 Creatures Of Dawn
5 Queen Of Spades
6 Starlight Nightcrash
7 A Taste Of The Apocalypse
8 The Leading Expert Of Loneliness
9 Direct Connection
10 Unbewegte Sternenmeere
Photo Credit: Lukas Diller