Exclusive mix 52: Ameel Brecht (Razen)

Ameel Brecht, of experimental psych duo Razen, records a haunting and, at times, hypnotic exclusive mix for us, filled with, as he puts it, “barely-there music, some old favourites and even two pop tunes.” Classical and eclectic, this is a mix that, we suspect, will still sound as good, if not better, with the passing of time. In the meantime, it’ll surely make you smile.

Exclusive mix 52: Ameel Brecht (Razen) by The Word Magazine on Mixcloud

Can you describe yourself in a few words? Your sound, approach to making music, your influences, how it all started, etc…

I am a classically trained guitar and lute player, with a deep interest in far out music – composition – improvising – in the wonderful ungraspable phenomenon of sound. Solo, I love to play my steel resonator and resonator mandolin. Together with shawm and bagpipe grandmaster Kim Delcour, I lead the ensemble Razen, which combines psychedelic grittiness with avantgarde headiness and primitive instinctiveness in improvised music played mainly on Early Music instruments, recently with the addition of ondes-Marthenot and analogue synths.

Can you describe the mix in a few words?

Starting off with a mash-up of wonderful barely-there music: Alan Splet, Eliane Radigue, Rolf Julius and a track from Circle’s Miljard album. I have loved spinning different music simultaneously since as a kid I discovered my father had different stereos + a tape machine, and I could use them together, so that I could layer different records and tapes and hear what effect it gave. There was no such word as a mash-up then. But it surely was fun. Some old favourites of mine are in this mix too, like Popol Vuh, Davy Graham, Tsegué-Maryam Guébrou and early Aphex Twin. A haunting and spellbindingly beautiful new track by Werner Durand, as Cuni VW-Max, is the exclusive track here. On combining this track with “Tha”, I would like to mention that the discovery of just intonation and slow change music, like Werner’s, La Monte Young, Laurie Spiegel, Pauline Oliveros…, has been as elemental for my listening and music-making as the discovery of early Warp records and Detroit techno when I was going to raves in my teens. Because there is a similar sense of mystery, of alchemy, of listening to musicians with secret insights and knowledge. Because this is music I could listen to forever. Short songs can be nice too so I also included two pop tunes that I always felt need to be put together: The Chills’ ‘pink frost’ and ‘the chills’ by Peter Bjorn & John. That drumbreak makes me smile. Which at the end of the day, may just be the most important thing.

What do you have coming up in the next few weeks?

Within a few weeks we release our new album “ENDRHYMES” on Kraak. Without a doubt our strongest statement to date.So a lot of activities around this release… In the meantime preparing some solo shows and always trying, trying, trying to find more time to write and play music…