Review

Niklas Wandt

Balearische Bibliothek

Italiy • 2021

Niklas Wandt is a musical as well as lyrical rainbow fish, who mostly swims in the same pool, but always wrings new iridescent scales from his music. His new EP »Balearische Bibliothek« (engl. balearic library) collects four songs, two of them with lyrics. What they all have in common is that Niklas Wandt – logically – once again remains true to his musical design between a lot of Düsseldorf School, Kraut and Cosmic. On the instrumental tracks »Abraum« and »Forellental« it sounds as dreamy as ever, but at the same time not as darkly post-NDW-heavy as with Neuzeitliche Bodenbelägen, his collaboration with Joshua Gottmanns. Whether with or without a partner, a world that interlocks sound and associative-literary ideas is something Niklas Wandt loves to create. This unfolds a little faster on the four-tracker, which lasts just over 20 minutes. Where in “Forellental” the shimmering fish plunge into the great synthesizer catharsis at the end of the track in purely musical terms, Wandt provides lyrical support in »Peiskam« – named after a small village in Austria – and »Zum Schmalen Handtuch«, which are loosely reminiscent of Thomas Bernhard, but omit his crushing bitterness. Niklas Wandt seeks and finds his inspiration in the glorifying view of the provincial from the perspective of the urban milieu, seeks intoxication, whether close to the microphone or as a radio voice above things. Balearic Library unites cosmopolitan sound and proletarian longings, skilfully transports timeless sound into a picturesque world where nature and civilization meet at eye level.