Der Finger - Das Zeit

4 songs
45:07 minutes
***** ***


Last year, Russian experimental duo Ė sometimes trio Ė released a quartet of EPs titled Bestiarium, maybe overwhelming their audience with their strange drony free jazz ambient music. Now they are already back with a new longplayer titled Das Zeit, about their twentieth release in only six years of band history. Of course, free form music doesnít take as long to be made than thoroughly composed songs, but that doesnít mean that the final result has to be minor in quality.

Das Zeit comes with four lengthy tracks, running between seven and fifteen minutes, and seem to be about event horizons, which doesnít surprise, considering that the album is dedicated to the late and great Stephen Hawking, whose major theory was on black holes. If Stephen Hawking did his best to make complicated science accessible for the general population, one canít say the same thing about what Der Finger are doing on Das Zeit.

Acting this time as a duo consisting of Anton Efimov and Evgenia Sivkova, Der Finger have made their best to come up with four experimental pieces that are quite different from each other. Anton usually in charge of guitar, bass and various effect pedals, while Evgenia is playing the drums, saxophones and vocals. The opener and title track Das Zeit is a nearly eleven-minute-long exploration of drone music enriched by atmospheric saxophone parts. The drones make for a threatening backdrop, and the saxophones do their best to emphasise the dark mood of the piece. At times I felt reminded of certain dark jazz bands, minus the rhythm. ńther is at fifteen and a half minutes the albumís longest track, and is even more avantgarde than the opener. The drones are overall more subdued, and are this time enhanced by experimental percussion that make for another intensive journey into your most inner self. The chaos continues with Entropie, a nearly twelve minute long track, made up of meandering guitar lines and otherworldly vocals taken straight from a ghost world, as if Jandek had tried his music at post-apocalyptic industrial music. At only a little over seven minutes, the concluding Chrononenfluss is the albumís shortest track, and actually comes with something like a rhythm. This track combines the duoís drone background with a sludgy doom atmosphere, ending Das Zeit in a threatening way.

If last yearís Bestiarium was at over two hours maybe a little too much to take in at once, Das Zeit is a more concise work with four explicitly different movements that may still be far away from typical music, but still offer a varied enough experience to make a gloomy twilight evening even darker. Fans of utter darkness that donít always need a straight-in-your-face rhythm will have a lot to contemplate on Das Zeit, which is available as a pay-what-you-like download on the bandís Bandcamp page.

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