Saturday, 19 April 2014

derTANZ - Vatta

I've written about derTANZ before.  On the one hand, they're one of many Budapest bands who are doing remarkable things with a broad punk mindset at the moment.  On the other, they're completely different from any of the other groups from that city that have been getting airplay on my Dandelion Radio show over the past couple of years.

I don't want this to sound like a put-down of those other bands, some of whom produce a full-on trash/hardcore/noise rock onslaught I love almost to the point of insanity, but with derTANZ you get more.  There's plenty of noise here, but its overlaid with elements of psychedelic experimentation and improvisation that stand above practically anything else coming out of Hungary at the moment.  Last year's Kaktusz album ably showcased their unique aesthetic, and now Vatta has come along to show us more.

There's a more slick feel to the production on this album but thankfully that's not diminished their appeal one bit.  The songs alternate from doom-laden low moans to frantic blasts of anger with many shades of grey in between: sometimes the tempo and mood can fragment and rebuild within the same song - as in the remarkable 'Slow Tilt' - while the near-a capella of 'Elvis Left The Building' illustrates this band's penchant for challenging their listeners' expectations and winning hands down.

I'm playing 'Beginner's Bible' in my April show, which may well be my favourite track on the album, but this is a collection that works best as a whole rather than via snapshots or excerpts.  You can pick it up here: it's name your price and, should you choose to chuck a few coins into their bowl, you can be reassured this band will be putting them to very good use.  To be honest, I'd have been perfectly happy with a re-hashing of Kaktusz, but Vatta has bravely chosen to build on and extend the template and, in pulling it off so brilliantly, derTANZ are more than worthy of the half an hour or so of your time it takes to appreciate this fine album.

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