If you ever wondered about the musical kind of magic blow that can be created in a modest basement far from a studio with all the bells and whistles, you might be delighted to discover this impro of a punch of sound virtuosos. We ask the Copenhagen-based band with the onomatopoetic name of Slaraffenland – standing for land of milk and honey – downstairs, when they come by Vienna for a show with the US East Coast band Akron Family in early November. With a fetching point of presence the quintet from Denmark performs “Postcard” and “Away” from their latest album “We’re On Your Side”, that has been felicitously described by Pitchfork as falling on the “less rigid end of the chamber-pop spectrum – downbeat but not dour, reveling in the sweet spot between structure and open-ended art-rock exploration”. It is a pleasure to hear and see them play, how they make things up as they go, how they absorb the audience in the open song structure and how no one is left cold by their somber and at the same time organically warm sound. The storytelling image of “Slaraffenland” has been enriched with a lasting melodramatic note.
Subterrarium is a self-defined „society to promote and interlink experimental art-forms in Vienna“, which means that they now and then host small-scale acts, performances and exhibitions – all for free. The opening hours are flexible, but mostly limited to Friday evenings. People have to be rather aware of the address to stumble through the unimposing entrance at Jörgerstraße 23 and find themselves in an improvised but cosy basement. With its comfortable second-hand furnishings and self-made fittings, Subterrarium feels like an extended living room, where you – once aware of the location – drop in for an evening beer that you did not really plan on. It just happens the same way as you get stuck in your living room couch, but in this case it includes nice company and enjoyable entertainment.