Echoes Of A Shattered Sky (CD)
Title: Echoes Of A Shattered Sky
Playing Time: 47:12
Release Date: 21st September 2012
Label: Biber Records
Distribution: Inakustik, Germany
In the beginning there was the shattered sky. A window – slammed shut. The glass – broken. The view outside – obscured. Inside: destruction. The end. While scenes like these evoke some terrible drama, they are part of our lives. They occur in our individual biographies as well as in the world as a whole. Everywhere. All the time.
Guitarist / composer Friedemann Witecka found an impressive account of sky-shattering on a national scale while reading »Stasiland« by the Australian writer Anna Funder. In this book, published 2003, he discovered the phrase: »pieces of a shattered sky«. The collaps of his own sky occurred in 2010. It was the end which marked the beginning of a new album entitled »Echoes Of A Shattered Sky«.
But the end was to turn into a new beginning, heralded by a butterfly. »Wing Your Way, Butterfly«, the first track, is an aural impression of the emergence. It reveals an artist who while retaining his musical signature has at the same time broadened his perspective since he recorded »Short Stories« (2003) and »Saitensprung« (2007).
In the following nine compositions fans will recognise the Friedemann they have known for a long time, while also discovering a wealth of new musical colours and textures. Those who are new to his music will befriend a musician whose wonderful talent combines head and heart. Friedemann's music contains both emotion and reflection. The delicacy and radiance of his guitar playing reveal a veritable »musician of the soul«, while the arrangements show the analyst, the sound architect, supervising the dialogues of the instruments, listening attentively to his fellow musicians and keeping a close eye on the wholeness and the integrity of the project.
Severence, departure, rebuilding, as well as encounters with people and landscape are the central themes of this album. Rhythms, moods and atmospheres alternate accordingly and, sometimes, even within the individual compositions. There are powerful earthy sounds as in »Running In Three«, and relaxed, swaying rhythms in »On The Shropshire Hills«. Folk patterns turn into boogie stomps in »Dancing On The Blue Lake«. And, in the title track, gentle guitar and cello timbres are contrasted with voluminous drum attacks. Following a delicate introduction of guitar arpeggios and minimalistic staccato piano patterns, »Farewell Miss U« ends up as a sentimental slow Tango. Finally, it’s déjà-vu, a revisiting of two favourites from Friedemann's songbook, »Tuning« and »Take-Off«, which originally appeared 1982 on the LP, »Voyager«, as works for solo guitar. Now they return in a brilliant, fulsome new rendering.
At his side, Friedemann has two trusted friends: pianist Kurt Eisfeld, who plays with elegance and surprising momentum. Markus Faller playfully adds rhythms, both delicate and intricate, on drums and percussion. And there is a new name: Tim Stroeble, whose violon cello plays a leading role next to Friedemann's guitars.
Musicians: Friedemann: Guitars; Tim Ströble: Violon Cello;
Kurt Eisfeld: Piano; Markus Faller: Drums & Percussion
01 Wing Your Way, Butterfly 4:57 (F. Witecka / M. Faller)
02 On The Shropshire Hills 5:01 (F. Witecka)
03 Dancing On The Blue Lake 4:38 (F. Witecka / K. Eisfeld)
04 Echoes Of A Shattered Sky 5:23 (T. Ströble / F. Witecka)
05 Running In Three 3:56 (F. Witecka / M. Faller)
06 Sad Samba 4:41 (F. Witecka / M. Faller / K. Eisfeld)
07 Losgelassen 4:50 (T. Ströble / F. Witecka)
08 Farewell Miss U 6:19 (F. Witecka / K. Eisfeld)
09 Tuning 2:49 (F .Witecka)
10 Take-Off 4:08 (F. Witecka)
Recorded and mixed at Studio F, Bollschweil, 2010-2012
Producer: Friedemann Witecka
Recording engineers: Ingo Rau, Adrian von Ripka, F. Witecka
Mixing engineer: Johannes Wohlleben
Mastering: Johannes Wohlleben, Bauer Studios, Ludwigsburg.