Ensemble Du Verre

When Soenke Duewer , founder of Ensemble du Verre, was invited to play a gig at a club night by the makers of - though still at their beginning - the today legendary Mojo Club in 1992, nobody was aware that an intense and ongoing musical relationship would arise from that first encounter (last fall Duewer aka Batterie Du Verre accompanied the Mojo Club "Feeling Good Tour 2005" playing both drums and laptop). For the last 14 years Duewer has played frequently in the Mojo Club or on tour with the Mojo DJs with all sorts of formations, from solo to jazz quartet, from pure acoustic sound to laptop and electronics. Here he has discovered both freedom and space to develop his unique personal sound.
In 2002, after having released several albums with his band Groove Galaxi, which he had set up in 1999 and which played as support for George Benson and Pat Metheny and on various international jazz festivals such as the "Leverkusener Jazztage" or "Jazz Baltica", he started composing music which after some years of jazz and club sound should sound more personal and intimate. He produced first versions (basic tracks) of beats, melodies and harmonies and recorded several musician friends playing along with the material they were listening to. The result is documented on the debut cd of the project he named "Ensemble Du Verre", called "facing, transparent".

Musical influences from Norway (Nils Petter Molvaer, Sidsel Endresen, Jaga Jazzist, Bugge Wesseltoft) and England (Matthew Herbert, Cinematic Orchestra, Wagon Christ, Aphex Twin) cant be ignored, Nu Avantgarde Jazz, E-Jazz or Jazz No Jazz are terms designed to describe this specific sound. Sampling, cut & paste and grain synthesis are merely a few of the working methods used to shape and reshape improvisations, song structures and sound sculptures. Sharply cut vocal samples are followed by drones and dub grooves, drum & bass is hand-played while the trumpet is being transformed into a cloud of sound, creating a stylistically unlimited overall sound.
When in fall 2003 Fante Records became severely interested in his work, Duewer started looking for musicians capable of performing his music live on stage. In Claas Ueberschaer on trumpet and Daniel Cordes on double-bass Soenke Duewer (alias Batterie Du Verre) found two players who, until today, complete the "Ensemble Du Verre" - three acoustic instruments and electronics, equally complementing one another.
In May 2004 "e.d.v." toured through Germany supporting Bugge Wesseltoft and afterwards played in numerous clubs and on several festivals. Besides some memorable German-Norwegian soccer encounters the co-operation with Bugge Wesseltoft resulted in a remix produced by the Norwegian star keyboarder taken from the cd "facing, transparent" for the upcoming album "Sing Me Something".

"Sing Me Something", as one can tell by the title, is about singing. For this album Soenke Duewer could win some of his favourite vocalists to sing on a track. Amongst them there are such renowned artists like Torun Eriksen, Ursula Rucker and Sidsel Endresen, but also some shooting stars of the German jazz scene like Michael Schiefel and Britta-Ann Flechsenhar, they all left their voices on a song.
The album also illustrates the further development of the "e.d.v." style. The music appears to be more outlined, more colourful, but also more compact, because the only guests are the vocalists. Instrumentally everything is played by Duewer, Ueberschaer and Cordes, followed by a long and intense procedure in which Du Verre successfully managed to integrate the singers into his "e.d.v." - electrified, moved, woven into the music - without depriving them of their individual characters. Out came fascinating creative music, difficult to lable and refusing to be pigeonholed. Thus the music combines apparent opposites, being exciting and relaxed at the same time, clearly structured and yet in a constant flux, virtual instrumentally complex and yet remarkably human in its simplicity.

© Photos by Christoph Giese