There are not many classical musicians who recommend a Berlin electro-punk album from 1993 on their Facebook account. Or celebrate the 25th anniversary of Grunge mastermind Kurt Cobain's death with a link to his key song "Lithium". Whether Atari Teenage Riot or Nirvana, pianist Kai Schumacher moves stylistically confidently and knowledgeably in the realms of popular music.
Schumacher appreciates progressive approaches, but would never have the idea of drawing rigid boundaries between pop and avant-garde. Since 2009 he has released four solo albums. These include "Transcriptions" from 2012, on which he translated grunge and indie rock songs for the piano. "RAUSCH" is now the first time the focus is on his own compositions. Schumacher does without overdubs, no electronics are used at all. Instead, he has prepared his instrument analogously, i.e. manipulated the mechanics and strings of the piano in such a way that "weird" tones are deliberately created.
Even the choice of words for the tracks goes beyond the usual format. Song titles like those of the first single "BRNFCK" would be more likely to be in the realms of metal or techno. Like "RAUSCH" as album title at all deliberately allows for ambiguities. Is it about excess? Should the sober everyday world be blurred by the music? Do we find ourselves in a state of sensual exaggeration when we listen? Kai Schumacher makes the conditions dance, lets them float, plays a game with acoustic perception. All this with a "broken" piano...