AS renaissance men in the underground music scene go, Bastien Keb has to be near the top of the pole.
Reckoning himself to be a guitarist first and foremost, he’s also adept on the trumpet, bass, drums, piano, flute, among other instruments: be they bought, borrowed, donated or found. Wearing another hat as a composer of television and film production music, he also has many complex things to voice outside the day job.
A brace of LPs over the past five years – Dinking in the Shadows of Zizou and 22.02.85 – showed a genuinely unique talent: a musician who could combine the most deathly alt.folk bleakness with classic, crate-digging Italian soundtracks of the late Sixties, and a line in minimalist outsider funk a la Arthur Russell or Shuggie Otis. I know, that’s a gap to bridge, right?
He records by himself in Leamington and Hackney, and confesses: “I don’t really mic shit up proper, so I gotta go lo-fi. Warm, fuzzy, dirty and honest; an antidote to over-production and over-analysis”.
And today, June 26th, he releases a standalone single, “Rabbit Hole”. It’s over on the folk side of the fence, hushed, snowy; his voice has that bone-deep chill of waking at 3am just after your lover has left you and 1, 2, 3 … remembering that they’re gone. It’ll remind you muchly of Bon Iver – Bon Iver when they were really good, when you really liked them.
It’s the first song to appear from a whispered-about third album, set to be released by London’s Gearbox Records in the autumn.
Embrace Bastien’s sui generis vision for future musics full of various pasts, and be bowled over.
Bastien Keb’s “Rabbit Hole” is out today, June 26th, via Gearbox Records, on digital format. Swoon over at http://www.gearboxrecords.com