Poetry stretches over heartbreaking synth lines while tasteful layer of melancholy covers the tracks of producer Julien Bracht and singer Markus Nikolaus aka Lea Porcelain. The Berlin-based duo’s sound is genre-bending they use elements from electronic music, post-punk combined with indie-rock as well as folk elements. They performed in Budapest in 2019 with the support of Liveurope, now their second album Choirs to Heaven is out so we checked in for a quick interview.
We welcomed you in Budapest in 2019. What do you remember about that concert? Are there any special moments that you remember?
Budapest was a really special show. The stage was very levelled with the audience and that gave it a very intimate and special atmosphere. We felt nicely surrounded and people watched super attentively. A lot of interaction happened in between the songs and the audience was very grateful and approached us super positive with a warm welcome. Towards the end of the concert I recited a poem by national poet Attila József and the crowd was shook and surprised by the interest we had in this Hungarian legend. We then proceeded with our last song “I Am Ok” and the crowd sang along loudly and wild from their hearts. One of the more special shows on tour and definitely a reason to make stop again next time in Budapest.
What do you miss the most about touring?
We miss the peoples’ interactions to our music. Online streams and concerts are not at all physical and during the tough lockdown times, we would get together in a small circle and hold Patreon live session or just for us, simple and acoustic and play music to each other in Funkhaus. Touring is the direct connection of your musical composition and the listener. We are just the message boys carrying the light. If that is gone, half of our existence felt in doubt. So, we’re really looking forward to play the European tour next spring.
We tend to talk about the challenges and difficulties of the last two years. Let’s talk about the positive things: what’s the best thing that has happened to you in 2020 and in 2021 so far?
In 2020 we produced as much music on all ends as possible for Lea Porcelain as well as solo that we could work on and in 2021, we finally released our second album that we’ve been working on for almost 2 years. We had to look for new ways of income which was creative but in the end every motor needs fuel and playing concerts has always been our lifeblood. Every artist has to face enormous challenges during this time and many gave up on their dream halfway. Corona is not a pause for art or perfomance, its the real deal. Keep on putting yourself out there in any way you can – and life will show you that you can still succeed.
Can you each pick a favourite song of the album Choirs to Heaven and tell us why?
They are all favourite songs already selected out from a big puddle of ideas we were having. Each song depicts a different set of emotions. “Just A Dream” delivers the feeling of intense heartache, “Consent of Cult” carries a lot of despair and anger that gets released throughout the song but mainly the one song that carries it all is “Choirs to Heaven”. Thats why we took this one as the title track for the album. It contains all the hope, passion, grief, honesty and melody in a perfect balance. Almost a mystery how we kept working and shaping this track throughout the process of the album. It is one of those “once in a lifetime” tracks for both of us.
What are your hopes and plans for the future?
Touring this great album of ours, making our solo debuts happening, spending more time with the entire band and release the remix EP of the album with all those great remixes we got together by Roman Flügel, Blawan, Frank Wiedemann, Âme and others. And obviously that humanity will overcome this big challenge that we have all been facing for the past 2 years. Great art comes from great sacrifice. Our hope is that we will experience this artistic renaissance after this lengthy pause. Full steam ahead!