Have you ever wondered what a Christmas card designed by Thomas Hardy would sound like? Just ask Tombed Visions Records
Kleefstra/Bakker/Kleefstra (KBK) make the kind of music that is inspired by Christmas cards. I don’t mean pictures of jolly overweight men in red and white or comedic scenes of families sitting around a table overloaded with food while a dog and a cat fight over the scraps. The Christmas cards that KBK soundtrack are of whited out landscapes and villages. All you can see is snow. No one is moving. Everything is silent. The sun is, either, rising or setting in the back ground, you know if Thomas Hardy made Christmas cards. There is an isolation and claustrophobia that screams from these paintings and pictures, but there is also a tenderness, that only comes when people are truly at ease and resigned to their collective fates.
The majority of the music on Desimber is minimal soundscapes that are constructed by guitarists Romke Kleefstra and Anne Chris Bakker. While these are improvised, there is a meditative structure that is hard to ignore. As these powerful audio panoramas, slowly undulate Jan Kleefstra’s poetry has the ideal backdrop. The poetry is spoken in Frisian, a language made up of Dutch, German and Lox Saxon. These lyrical tones add the dynamism that gives Desimber something tangible to grab hold of in the fug of music.
This is the kind of music that maybe you won’t play very often, which is a shame as it a flawless exercise of self-control and minimalism, but it does evoke a time of year, when people are on their own and others aren’t. Desimber indeed.