by Doc Wör Mirran featuring Adrian Gormley

No other band can pull off something like this: combing cheesy pop ballads (which is exactly what the German word “Schnulze”, shortened here to “schnulz” as if it were an English verb, means) with sounds that can only be described as noise – and making perfect, enjoyable musical sense of it. Featured saxophonist Adrian Gormley is capable of free-jazzy skronk as well as lush lyricism, and the core DWM group of Joseph B. Raimond, Michael Wurzer, and Stefan Schweiger are equally capable of turning disco beats into children's songs on weird drugs, or conjuring up the ghost of a harmonica in a 'noise blues' song of sorts even when there is definitely no harmonica present in the mix.

Very little of this is rock, but a lot of it is kraut – in the sense that the pieces on this album, as with most of DWM's material, do not function like rock songs, but develop like krautrock suites or dance tracks. But there is another element at play in almost all the tracks here, which is the true DWM hallmark, and that is the humour. It's present in the dada-flavoured title puns (“Sitting Bullshit”), but much more so in the structure of the music. Surely the slowing down of a mid-tempo disco track to a druggy haze (and many other aspects of this record) could be understood as mere parody of a genre, but that kind of misses the point. DWM love music in all of its aspects and many of its genres way too much to waste their time with something as negative as parody. They are totally serious in their playful dedication to their music. Even when they schnulz, they schnulz with all of their heart in it. But they are clever (and modest) enough not to take themselves too seriously. It's not about the musicians, it's about the music – which is also why DWM are constantly open to collaboration.

File under: improvisation, psychedelic, krautrock

ACU 1060

factory-produced CDr in cardboard sleeve

Released in 2023

limited to 100 copies

price: 7.00 EUR (excl. postage)

Adrian Gormley – sax, cover photography
Joseph B. Raimond – guitar, synthesiser, bass, cover painting, label photography
Stefan Schweiger – theramin
Michael Wurzer – samples, synthesiser
Sascha Stadlmeier – insert photography and layout

Recorded 2016 to 2022 at Two Car Garage Studios, Fürth Germany
As always, in loving memory of Frank Abendroth and Tom Murphy
Dedicated to Gordon Lightfoot
This is DWM release # 211

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Gartenzwerge, Blümchen, ein fetter Schmetterling? Es schnulzt bei Schnulz (ACU 1060) von DOC WÖR MIRRAN featuring ADRIAN GORMLEY. Allerdings auf einer Metaebene, denn von Schlagerkitsch oder parodistischen Absichten keine Spur. Umso mehr von lau­nigen und gegen Corona geimpften – 'I Got the Pfizer in Me' – Liebeserklärungen an die leichte Muse als Bitch in tausend Gestalten. Mit krautiger Zeitvergessenheit, mit Oh Oh Oh oder knarrig und unterwasserambient, mit Drummachine und Käseorgelloops, monotoner Klimperei und Psychgitarre oder von der 'Disco Duck' gebissen, mit einer dumpf-knurri­gen, diskant pfeifenden Anspielung auf Dolly Partons '9 to 5' ('Betty White's Favourite Song'), derbem Wortwitz ('Sitting Bullshit') oder einer Spitze gegen den Jazzgitarristen und Bandleader bei 'Has Russ Spiegel Ever Gotten Laid?'. Dabei dominieren mal Synthe­sizer, Theremin oder Samples, mal Joseph B. Raimonds Gitarre und Bass. Erst bei 'Tell Me How I Feel', dem auf Wolke 9 driftenden 'Fast Perfekt' und nach dem glockenspielerischen Intro bei 'Butterfly' ist Gormleys Saxophon ganz für das melancholische Feeling zuständig. Aber auch für die Flammenzüngelei beim lärmigen Discostomper oder die lyrischen Schnörkel zum lakonisch klackenden 'Bullshit'. Schnulzigem Downtempo mit Bass und Gitarre folgen nochmal Giallo-Glockenspiel und Gormleys Poesie zu Spinett und Bass und machen die Russ-Eulenspiegelei besonders rätselhaft. 'I Doubt It' macht sich dann zu elektronischen Kicks, Maschinenbeat, Fuzzbass und Gormleys Lyrik wieder locker. Umso rührender das Outro mit Klimperkeys und blumigem Sax – wären da nur nicht diese fau­chenden Wooshes und bassdumpfen Laute. Natürlich fehlt auch beim DWM-Release # 211 die typische Widmung nicht, diesmal an Gordon Lightfoot (1938-2023).



As ever, Doc Wör Mirran remains a strange bunch. Adrian Gormley is a long-term member of the group, so why say 'featuring' this time? Gormley is known for using the saxophone, so I expected a heavy release of a saxophone, but that's not the case. Next to his horn, we find band 'boss' Joseph B. Raimond on guitar, synthesiser, and bass, Stefan Schweiger on theramin and Micheal Würzer in samples and synthesiser. The core group seems complete here, even when Schweiger is not on drums. Together, they crafted some strange music during their sessions; this collection contains pieces recorded between 2016 and 2022. There is no particular musical genre to fit the group in, but they generally do one sort of thing on a release. This time, however, they go for a mixture of styles, which, funnily, works quite well. There's some pleasing psychedelic rumble going on here ('I Gots The Pfizer In Me'; as always, they have some funny titles, showing their dadaistic side), disco beats in the first part of the title piece and some of Gormley's jazzy saxophone taking the lead in 'Tell Me How I Feel', or in the soft jazz of 'Butterfly (minimal mix)'. There is chaos, too, in 'Disco Duck'. Gormly's saxophone is present in almost every track, but some go without him. As said, it is a highly varied disc and a constant source of pleasure. Not every track is a winner, but I blame that on my none-jazz roots.

Doc Wör Mirran featuring Adrian Gormley Schnulz cover front
Doc Wör Mirran featuring Adrian Gormley Schnulz InlayDoc Wör Mirran featuring Adrian Gormley Schnulz Inlay
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