When I put on the Live-CD of Dee Dolen, I immediately realized that I haven’t danced for a long time.
Strictly speaking it’s been my body to realize it first; it’s been my body that started to move instinctively before I even thought of dancing.
I remember an article talking about some speculations, if the purring of cats could increase their bone density, if this audible expression of feeling good eventually could have effects on the material that composes their body. And when I was hovering through the room having been set swinging by the music of Dee Dolen, I thought that this thesis actually could be true, for my bones suddenly felt more stable and supple – I’m not kidding!
Things like that rarely happen to me. Music especially made for dancing rarely touches me. The most likely Jazz has always animated me to dance, or that musical conglomeration commonly called jazzy.
In fact this attribute can adhere to every kind of music, it’s only important that freedom is perceptible in the way the music is played.
To call it skill of improvisation would be insufficient, for it requires also some awareness of life, something that puts a smile on the face or even every now and then an expression of ecstasy; in any case the eyes should close instinctively.
Such blind faith I associated right from the very first moment with the music of Dee Dolen. The same at the concert in Dornbirn in February 2012, when I heard the band for the first time. As on the double CD the program started with rhythms beaten by Todd Isler on the Uduboo, rhythms that opened minds and ears for the wide world.By world I intend the homeland of all those musicians who has been source of inspiration for Dee Dolen. As examples I only mention Portugal, Brazil, the Balkan and last but not least Austria.
Here you recognize all those world-provinces represented by their characteristic musicale habits, stylistically clamped by a huge varety of instrumental colors created by the two musicians Christian Bakanics (accordion) and Achim Kirchmair (guitar).
And of course by the voice and personality of front woman Ingrid Moser, whose preferences for Latin-Jazz and Fado form the emotional basis for the overall concept. It’s quite obsolete to talk about direct influences in the age of thousands of transmission channels and the multiple linked scenes. Despite I do so and I mention Astrud Gilberto, Elis Regina and Maria Rita, further more the Portuguese singer of Fado-Jazz Maria João Ingrid Moser was allowed to learn from, as milestones of a development understandable to me. And as I’m just talking about it let me add Madredeus and Sade, or the intellectual East Coast Folk-Scene and, why not, the early Marianne Mendt as an ur-example for good and original Austro Pop. The latter is important because the Dee Dolen’s Jazz-Folk songs sung in the dialect of the Tyrolean Oberland and played by a technically brilliant ensemble, represent a real development of this genre. But as mentioned above: The home of Dee Dolen is that tradition of world music, the Jazz lives fertile stylistic exchanges for more than 50 years with. And Austria is part of this world, that’s it.
The first song of the album confirms this thesis. In Spaceship the Uduboo sounds mentioned above that change between Africa and India, move on to a tango danced by accordion and guitar and at least grounded by the bowed bass of Peter Herbert, resident of many worlds.
And within this highly relaxed atmosphere arranged with very economic means, Ingrid Moser begins to tell her story about joy of life that starts with the lines: „Du i fliag do, du i bin do, ganz im Hier.“ (“Hey you, I’m flying here, hey you, I’m being here, completely in the here.”) This analysis could be continued without efforts for the following songs, substituting tango for Bossa Nova (Era um retondu) or for Valse (Stranza) or for Samba (Schmetterling (butterfly)). Or pointing out the driving energy of odd rhythm that is typical for Balkan-Jazz (in particular impressive in Heimatwellen (homeland waves)) or the attempt to elaborate the merely thermal effect of all these stylistic elements to compositions that some time or other inevitably take off.
No wonder that I was in this physical state of floating right from the very beginning. No surprise either that most of Ingrid Moser’s lyrics have to do with flying. And at least completely logical that a bird has been name giving for the band, especially one of those corvid species, the most versatile, most intelligent and therefore most free flying species on earth.
Text; Wolfgang Mörth, Bregenz
Dee Dolen- live/ Doppel CD Album
Moments of life Tour 2012
Ingrid frida Moser- voc / comp
Achim Kirchmair- guit / comp
Christian Bakanic- acc
Peter Herbert- double bass
Todd Isler-drums / perc