US psych titans Wooden Shjips are in Berlin with the sole intention of bending all the minds that make it down to Festsaal Kreuzberg tonight.
Prior to 2006, Wooden Shjips was an experiment in primitive and minimalist rock. After the project imploded, Ripley Johnson, guitar and vocals, assembled the current line-up of Dusty Jermier on bass, Nash Whalen on organ and Omar Ahsanuddin on drums. Fast forward to 2011 and West is the first record the band have made in a proper studio. The overriding theme of the album is the American West and the raw romanticism, mythology and idealism it embodies. It’s easy to see why these traits would appeal to Wooden Shjips, as their music lends itself to exploration. So while the venue tonight might feel like a familiar stomping ground, allow Wooden Shjips to take you on a journey to who knows where.
Opening tonight’s show is UK folk legend Michael Chapman who needs no introduction, but here’s two anyway courtesy of BBC’s Spencer Grady and Q Magazine:
Grady: Just as John Fahey and Robbie Basho were belatedly sainted by a slew of avant-garde musicians eager to enrich their experimental fields with old primitive tradition, so the same enclave have reached out to embrace Yorkishire-born minstrel Michael Chapman.
Q Mag: This is the sound of a real songwriter who’s lived a real life and all that entails.
Wooden Shjips // Michael Chapman | Tonight, 21:00 at Festsaal Kreuzberg, Berlin