SPOT Festival is THE festival Good because Danish is looking forward to the most each year and 2018 is no different. Because where else to go if we want to find out what’s new and hot in Danish music, than to Aarhus in May? The answer is simple: there is no other place to be! The line-up of this year’s SPOT Festival is shaping up pretty awesome and we started digging into it to see what are our top #mustsee acts. Check out the blog the next weeks to read which SPOT Festival concert we will attend for sure.
Apart from the Main Program SPOT Festival 2018 also includes a rich and packed Partner Program with different musical acts, musicians, bands, and singers with very different styles. So don’t miss your opportunity to discover wonderful new artists!
The five guys, Jon, Jeppe, Rasmus, Frederik and Adrian, from Aarhus produce music that is more than just tones. Abekejser clearly doesn’t fit easily into a single genre. They are infusing electronic elements and sometimes hip-hop sounds to their jazzy music. But like Jazz and Electronic music themselves, their music is diverse which makes them so interesting. They released their first single “St. Puma” summer 2016 and just released their third single “Dr. Robotface” beginning of the year. Abekejser explores an atmospheric space where they take their listeners on what feels like an adventurous but also dreamlike rainforest trip with its mysterious landscapes and animals (by the way, Abekejser is Danish for English Emperor Tamarin or in German Kaiserschnurrbarttamarin, a little monkey living in South America). You should definitely join them when they take you into their world at SPOT Festival this year, and to make things even more exciting read our little interview!
You are a team of five, how do different ideas grow into one song? Where do you get your ideas?
Abekejser: Well, we have been hanging out and playing with each other in different constellations way before we started Abekejser. So as well as a band, we’re all just homies and understand each other socially as well as musically. We kinda understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses and we try to complement each other musically that way. So basically, when some come to the band with an idea for a new track, everyone kind of contributes to their own thing. Jon (keys) and Jeppe (guitar) starts molding the melody and harmonies, Rasmus (drum machine) and Frederik (drums) starts building a beat that fits the style, while Adrian (Bass Synth) is the glue between the rhythmic and harmonic part, and tries to make a bassline that combines the whole thing into one piece. From there on we just mess around with the idea, jam, break it up and try to put it into form. It’s very much like a collective old-school band in that way.
Who are the people behind Abekejser, can you describe each other with three adjectives?
Jeppe: Man of many faces, Calculated & Beardy
Jon: Down to earth, Fresh & Positive
Frederik: Patient, Faithfull & Temperamental
Adrian: Calm, Mysterious & Rational
Rasmus: Volatile, Creative & Friendly
From a commercial perspective, Instrumental music is quite a niche. How did this come about?
Yeah, well in relation to popular music it is pretty niche. It all depends on the context. Our music is a mixture of many things, and many of the inspiration has been instrumental music context. The four of us are also jazz musicians and inspired a lot by the very broad spectrum of classic and contemporary jazz music. When jazz was popular, it was actually mostly played instrumentally. Then there is the dance/club component, which is often also instrumental. But then there’s the more pop/rock-oriented side. And actually, in some of our recent tracks, we have incorporated some vocals in the form of vocoder sounds (which is singing through a synthesizer to make an altered vocal sound). We will keep trying different things if that is what inspires us, and we feel the musical universe can handle it.
You just released your third single “Dr. Robotface”. Tell us, what is the story behind it?
So the first two singles actually came out with an animated video to them. Behind the music is a fictitious universe they will be told in story form throughout our releases. “Dr. Robotface” is one of these characters, and even though the track didn’t get its own animated video this time, it is something we are working with a team of graphic animators to create in the future. So we can’t spoil too much of the story of “Dr. Robotface”, because you will be able to see it in the upcoming videos.
So what are your plans for the future and after SPOT Festival?
Right now we are in the process of recording tracks for a coming full-length album. We hope to release it sometime this year with animations. We have a lot of concerts in Denmark and hope to get out of the country again. We just went on a big tour in Russia and shall go there again next summer. And in the meantime, we will just be playing and practising as much as possible, and try to get our music out to a broader audience.
SPOT Festival 2018
09-13.05.2018 – Aarhus (DK): different locations – Event on Facebook