Felix Fellinger & Peter Schermhuber
Peter Neuhauser plus
Photos: Jost Gebers
Preface: Wolfgang Wasserbauer
Brötzmann. The man. The word. The music. Art. Life. The individual. The saxophone. We’re all familiar with these things, this should be enough. We shall, however, go into greater detail, even if it takes another minute or two: it is not that would claim that we had sufficiently ‘dealt with’ Jazz at the end of the eighties! What took place, however, was a certain kind of shift in direction of our ‘Club’ towards Rock/Hardcore. St. Vitus played here and a lot of important encounters with bands like Fugazi, Nomeansno, HP Zinker, The Ex, also Naked City and for sure, with Caspar Brötzmann’s Massaker. We loved this particular one: the father already one of our heroes, and now – no less, the son! The catchphrase was ‘energy’, no compromise, radical, Underground, loud, not Luise 1). Not much has changed in this respect, not over decades!
There are many things one associates with Peter Brötzmann: commitment, intensity, freedom, don’t give in, chin up and on with it, with drive and attitude, in two words: artist & personality. We like that, we like him, we like his playing.
And this is how a relationship developed, something was set in motion, and there was no lack of mutual respect.
There followed innumerable performances in Wels. One of the particularly ‘spectacular’ ones took place on the occasion of his 50 th birthday. The März-Combo was there on that occasion, with an incredible line-up, this is all history now, everything was documented. Recordings were subsequently released of some of the performances, we definitely felt and feel honoured: “The Wels Concert” is the title of one of the CDs, recorded in 1998 with Mahmoud Gania and Hamid Drake during ‘unlimited X’. Also “Live in Wels” the CD titled “Shadows” with Keiji Haino and Shoji Hano.
Brötzmann often appeared and appears on our programmes. From playing solo, right through to his current main project, the Chicago Tentet. He is quick to support young musicians and bands, has also played occasionally in the ‘Kaffeehaus’ and has been known to have his footwear hand-made at ‘Strauss’.
Yet with all the persistence and determination in his work, however, there is always the element of movement and change: alongside the combined energy and attack we know so well, for a long time also this shading, a splash of colour, something sensitive and ‘delicate’ have emerged.
And it all fits together like a glove!
Our intention to organise an Unlimited Festival with Brötzmann as curator, by no means developed on a whim. The first discussions and meetings on this subject took place more than two years ago, a challenge, as it quickly became evident, because we wanted “all this and much, much more”: the full picture, the total Brötzmann, like never before!
A lot has happened in the meantime: Brötzmann has celebrated another milestone birthday, two films came out this year and only recently he was awarded the Albert-Mangelsdorff-Jazzpreis. Obviously there had to be a visit to Wuppertal as well as Brötzmann’s current exhibition. Numerous discussions and meetings took place, and apart from all that they also heavily shit all over us in his favourite pub. (…)
1) Ernst Jandl: Laut und Luise, Anthology 1966
from: Programme brochure Long Story Short - unlimited # 25, Wels/Austria
Translation: Isabel Seeberg & Paul Lytton