The Honest Broker12.03.23
Eleven New Albums I'm Recommending Right NowRead Review
The most ear-pleasing releases continue to arrive from unexpected places. Consider the case of Munich-based Jonathan Bockelmann. If you know him at all, it’s probably from his intensely electronic music as part of the techno trio Glaskin—it sounds like this. But who would guess that he’s one of the most creative acoustic guitarists in Europe? Bockelmann has been playing classical guitar for two decades, and now—finally—releases a debut solo album.
He plays fresh, unfettered music with total authority in a lick-free zone. Although his claimed influences include such disparate voices as Ryuichi Sakamoto, Leo Brouwer, and J.S. Bach, there’s nothing derivative in these guitar vignettes. Frankly, I’m surprised that Manfred Eicher didn’t sign this hometown lad to a contract. He deserves a larger platform than just an unheralded indie release. But consider yourself now in the know.
Forcing myself will never help me find the right ideas!Read Review
Where does the impulse to create something come from for you? What role do often-quoted sources of inspiration like dreams, other forms of art, personal relationships, politics etc play?
Back when I was a child the impulse came from the immense fascination I had with music as a phenomenon itself. I felt that I have a voice that can be expressed through music.
Then later in life - after I studied Classical Guitar at the University of Music in Munich - I always tried to find the perfect repertoire for me to start recording my debut LP. For some reason I never found the right pieces.
I didn't identify with a lot of the repertoire that the Guitar is so famous for, nor did I want to be another Interpreter to record a transcription piece by Bach or other classical composers. There was so little music composed for this instrument that actually moved me personally. So all of this created the urge or the impulse for me to start composing. I played the Guitar for over two decades so I knew I am capable of extracting all the beautiful sounds of this very complex instrument.
Beside that - common inspirations like taking a walk through nature, looking at different art forms and especially daily life definitely spark a need for me to capture moods through compositions.
The German classical guitarist evokes a sense of awe and wonder on his debut album »Childish Mind«Read Review
Musically, I’ve been looking forward to present today’s album to you for a while. Let me preface this by saying the concept of a solo acoustic guitar record usually doesn’t provoke excitement in me. But I’ve followed Munich-based quasi-jazz label Squama closely over the years, and much of their stuff has been right up my alley, so when they announced »Childish Mind« with the first single »Lihan«, I definitely wanted to give it a shot.
Lo and behold, by the first few chords, Jonathan had already won me over. And I’ve been in love with this record ever since.