Since the October release of ‘StreetLife’ (Italic Recordings), their long-anticipated fourth album, Von Spar have been at the centre of much critical acclaim.
The Cologne-based band, first came on the scene in 2003 and swiftly gained recognition for their heterogeneous style. Sebastian Blume, Jan Philipp Janzen, Christopher Marquez and Phillip Tielsch have been praised for their ability to create catchy tunes from a myriad of musical genres. ‘StreetLife’ skilfully combines elements of Krautrock, synth pop, techno and more. It is a testament to Von Spar’s musical versatility and has already been dubbed one of the ‘albums of the year.’
So it was to an excited home crowd that the band performed at Stadthalle Mulheim’s Week-End festival last Saturday. For the first half of the set they were joined on stage by Canadian singer and co-collaborator Marker Starling (aka Chris Cummings) whose poignant vocals feature on four out of eight tracks on the new album. With the audience fired-up following a punchy delivery of ‘Chain of Command’, two saxophonists joined the stage for a spine-tingling rendition of ‘Breaking Formation.’ A highlight of the evening was the band’s performance of ‘One human minute’ whose moreish beats and epic vocals make it impossible not to dance to.
The night’s set epitomised the musical scope that we have come to expect from Von Spar. With several star album reviews and a host of gigs booked for the new year, Von Spar’s dedication to genre-bending music is clearly paying off.