Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Open Air St. Gallen: From Kravitz to Kooks

So my stay in Switzerland comes to an end befitting: Writing for the Swiss newspaper Tagblatt I will get a chance to see quite a few interesting young bands: The Enemy, who won Paul Weller's praise and have been mentioned on this blog before, then the Wombats (with the sweetest greets to their biggest NYC fan Martial Vivot of Room: how was the show?) and the Kooks. Me, I am looking forward to see my friends Stahlberger & Band: The wittiest lyrics over the freshest music, in swiss german, though. Then again, you Americans dont know whatcha missing anyway: The combo Zueri West has been around for 25 years and beats Lenny Kravitz in one single bar.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

It Is Not About Winning, Is it?

So, Switzerland lost against Turkey in the Euro 2008 and can focus on what the Swiss do best: Hosting. Finally, done with the drama, the supersized star posters, the bread rolls with Swiss flags in it and every car seller giving away free soccer balls etc. Back to quaint quiet non-euphoric Swissness, watching others play and commenting dryly on their mistakes instead of keeping our own porch clean. Who's gonna win? The Germans, probably. Or the Italians (I hope). But it's not about winning - it's about playing the king of games, Football. So forgive me for taking a break from all that Rock'n'Roll and focusing on the round leather. But, just so you know that there are good concerts in the alps, let me give you a rundwon of what I've seen so far: Palace SG hosted the first Silver Jews show ever in Switzerland and fans came from hundred of miles away to be treated to an intense and beautful set of alt country with a bitter twist. Switzerland's own Guz played Palace, too and he is so real and true, even you Americans would be impressed - i'll have to get him to come to NYC one of these days. Then there was the unique Jeffrey Lewis and his brother Jack, who don't get enough out of supporting Steven Malkmus on his tour and use their days off to play strangely beautiful squat places such as the Binz in Zurich, where hundreds of alt folkies managed to transform old factory spaces into a Swiss Mini-Bushwick. The Lewis brothers, you could tell, felt like home and rewarded us with two hours of music and history lessons. Grand. More to come, I am looking very much forward to reporting from the Open Air St. Gallen, where we will have a chance to see acts such as Beck, Bad Religion, The Enemy and, erm, Lenny Kravitz. No Witz.