PASCAL SCHUMACHER ANNOUNCES “RE: SOL” AND RELEASES FEJKÁ REWORK ‘AMARCORD (DAYDREAM VERSION)’ – OUT APRIL 13th
The vibraphonist and composer, Pascal Schumacher made a name for himself in a variety of collaborative endeavours from quartets to symphonic orchestras before discovering the liberation and wisdom of going solo with his 2020 release SOL, “I found out so much about myself alone, more than I ever would have imagined,” he says. The album captured Schumacher’s newfound passion for solitude in all its magnetism and exposed the depth of his relationship with the vibraphone through 14 tracks of breathtaking tenderness. Almost a year on from the album, Schumacher invites four other solo musicians to reinterpret tracks from SOL. Re: SOL is an intimate and focused experiment on colliding solitudes.
Pascal Schumacher has invited Fejká, an electronic music producer from Germany to join his project. Torn between the dreamy, soft atmosphere of ambient music and the hard punchy vibe of techno, Fejká’s style has varied influences with the producer knowing just how to harness the best of two contrasting genres.
In Fejká’s rework of Amarcord, which sees the producer take the tune into his terrain of atmospheric electronic music, there’s an overwhelming sense that sounds were crafted with utmost care. Downtempo rhythmic beats and elegant synth samples take center-stage, all the while the vibraphone makes discreet appearances lightening what could otherwise be a much darker mood. “I was looking for a specific part that’s easy to loop because my music is quite atmospheric but also repetitive and evolving. With ‘Amarcord’ I immediately felt that the percussive bell sounding loop created an atmosphere in my head which I wanted to continue working on,” says Fejká, “The drums and synths, and other leads followed suit and the whole sound was already created in a really short time.”
Fejká Announces New Album REUNION. The first single, Svanur, is out today, July 26th. Watch the beautiful accompanying video below, shot in Iceland. Fejká will also be joining German deep house producer Christian Löffler on an European tour in November.
Creating an album is a journey of self-knowledge through hindsight; putting together the tracks that will compose the oeuvre much like putting together a photo album. It involves looking back and undoubtedly reflecting over the memorable times that inspired each composition. That is definitely the case for Fejká, who released this year his album, Reunion. “The tracks on this album started to emerge from all different moments, feelings and mental states of my life during the last two years. They all have the same origin and purpose, to be fragments of my journey to find myself. Each song is a part of me,” says the German electronic music producer and visual artist.
Like with everything that involves hindsight, there is a great deal of nostalgia in the album – and it is the nature of nostalgia to be fluid. It can be at once sweet or melancholic, agitated or mellow, airy or heavy, but it nonetheless invokes in all its forms a sentimental longing for something. In Reunion, nostalgia is primarily given shape in dreamlike soundscapes, soft atmospheres that nonetheless evoke strong contemplative feelings. This longing is carefully unfolded in the album’s track Youth where a simple melody plays out over the sound of seagulls and develops effortlessly into a joyful tune. The track, informed by its title, invokes the candor and naivety of childhood, “The song is not trying to be cool, dreamy, dancy or anything, it’s just this carefree and lighthearted atmosphere.”
But to describe Fejká’s music only by its more delicate side would only be painting a part of the picture. Since his EP Twilight, the producer has been exploring sounds that are at once ethereal and dynamic, celestial but also very much grounded on the dancefloor. In a seamless way, Fejká crafts music that is equally suitable for introspective moods and wonders as it is for a club. But while ‘Twilight’ explored this duality between dreamlike atmospheres and dance music, Reunion seems to delve into a much vaster range of emotions and approaches, cementing the young producer’s eclecticism, “I think that I realized that life is too diverse to be only portrayed by one sound style,” explains Fejká,“It’s a collection of my life and the sum of all the ups and downs.”
Take the track Untold for instance, perhaps the most fast-tempo title of the album with it’s punctuated beats and repetitive melodies. Rather than it being just a dance tune, it is also a highly emotive and contemplative song which plays out like a riddle, provoking feelings of quest and curiosity, “It catches a mysterious atmosphere and plays with the power of the unknown. I really love music causing emotions which seem too complex to understand,” says Fejká. The track couldn’t be more different than the album’s opening title, Reunion, which moves slowly and carries an ethereal melody of melancholy and insight. Both songs nonetheless are equally compelling in conveying a feeling instantly and potently.
Another tool used on Reunion that hits hard on an emotional level, is the use of the voice, “It conveys a certain authenticity and truth, and builds a bridge in terms of emotionality for the listener. Experiencing an emotional medium through human voice triggers some deeply rooted evolutionary feelings,” explains Fejká. The strongest example of this sentimentality comes in the track Reunion for which friend and musician Marie Angerer contributed with haunting vocals, “For me, a female fragile voice is very special and outstanding in the universe of musical elements,” he says.
Putting together the album might have been a journey of self-knowledge, but creating its ten tracks was purely intuitive for Fejká, “While doing a song, I think you should just do it and not think about anything else,” he explains. “After finishing, you will start to realize what you have just created and try to find personal meaning.” Having a visceral creative process means that inspiration could hit at any time, anywhere. Drafting sketches became an important way in which Fejká would capture those revelations, “Sometimes I have ideas for melodies and lyrics, so I end up humming the melody awkwardly into my phone.” From then, Fejká would develop these sketches in his laptop – a basic setup which nonetheless permitted him to take his ideas far, “I only expand my set up when I really feel that I can’t produce what I want with my current equipment, otherwise, it will just overstress my mind and wallet.”
It is fair to say that Reunion is much more about feelings than it is about any technical element or craft. The strength of the album’s tracks is deeply tied to their ability to capture a mood, and convey it to the listener. Fejká has successfully been honing this ability since his last EP. In Reunion, the young producer moves the listener through his own personal emotive journey, through his own experiences, and at every track the listener feels closer and more at home with Fejká himself.
Pre-order Reunion here. Releases September 20, 2019 via Christian Loffler’s Ki Records.
2. Reunion (feat. Marie Angerer)
4. Svanur (feat. Rökurró)
8. Skye (feat. Marie Angerer)
“Ghostlight (ft. Marie Angerer)” is the first single to be shared by electronic artist Fejká on the 23rd June. The single comes as a prelude to his debut EP “Twilight” which will be released by Christian Löffler’s label Ki Records on 14 July. Having previously supported Christian Löffler’s tours at Kowalski and Zoom, the new EP is an exciting new project for the young artist, and features collaborations with Icelandic singer-songwriter Hildur and German indie-pop and folk artist Marie Angerer.
Brian Zajak, aka Fejká began his musical career at the age of 17. Torn between the the dreamy soft atmosphere of ambient music, and the hard punchy vibe of techno, Fejká couldn’t decide which direction his music production would take. “Day/night, dream/dance, slow/fast – music was always split into two worlds for me” he says. Thus, he decided to experiment with both, showing the development process of dream music into dance music.
The EP’s first two songs, ‘Illumination’ and ‘Sunlight’ are dreamy downtempo tracks. They embody the emotions of waking up from a long night of restful sleep and slowly becoming aware of the world around you. The album concludes with ‘Moonlight’ and ‘Ghostlight (ft. Marie Angerer)’ which represent a certain state of hypnosis and trance brought on by nightfall. However, the key song and title track, ‘Twilight (ft. Hildur)’ is an amalgamation of both worlds, and is the bridge that merges the two contrasting genres of music embodied on this album. “My personal favourite, “Twilight (ft. Hildur)”, is a unique and rare combination of both worlds and really important for me because it perfectly describes my musical taste. It took me a long time to finish something like this, but I’m very happy to have found that one song, which combines everything to an absolute purity of musical perception.”.
Drawn to artists such as Essáy, HVOB, Stumbleine and Christian Löffler, the appeal of this EP lies in its varied influences, and ability to harness the best of two contrasting genres. Twilight takes the listener on a journey from day to night and Fejká effectively shows us the beauty of both worlds.
Says Fejká of the EP: “The atmosphere of ambient music was my pool of calmness and deep thoughts, something you can just chillout to and think about your life. On the other hand, when I had my first contact with techno music, I felt the unique vibe of it, the feeling how music can make your body move and forget about everything, the feeling of the crowd melting together in a big rain of ecstasis. I never wanted to make music which only appeals to a certain spectrum of mood or people, I’m always trying to achieve that one absolute sound, which is relatable to every situation in ones life, music you can dance and dream to at the same time.”
“Twilight” EP Tracklist:
03 Twilight (ft. Hildur)
05 Ghostlight (ft. Marie Angerer)