A band as friendship. A band as a work of art. For the 4 unique characters that form Marbert Rocel, this has been a living utopia for more than ten years now. Founded in 2005 by the roommates Malik and Panthera Krause in their Erfurt apartment, Marbert Rocel quickly grew to a four piece by adding singer Spunk and keyboard player Philipp Millner, and moved into their own studio in 2007. The new spot at Zughafen, a place that significantly helped to put Erfurt on the Pop Music Map by spawning highly successful acts like Clueso, provided a creative environment, where they immediately felt at home. Here they met the light and visual Art Heroes Lotus Lumina who ever since provide the spectacular light show at Marbert Rocel live performances.
Within the Marbert Rocel Studio, a charming togetherness of alleged contrasts evolved, ranging from songs that suddenly become secret weapons on house music dance floors to tracks that transfer peak time vibes to your living room sofa. All this is accomplished by incorporating playful details and delicate harmonies. Marbert Rocel literally dances across hermeneutic genre barriers by employing organic and electronic sounds equally. This mixture early on caught attention of the legendary Munich based independent label Compost Records, who added them to their roster in 2007. Since then Marbert Rocel has released three albums, “Speed Emotions”(2007), “Catch A Bird”(2009) and “Small Hours” (2012) on the label. Each record was critically acclaimed by the press, and accompanied by a growing fan base. But also artists like Onsulade, Solomun, Matthias Kaden oder Trus’Me showed a high appreciation for the bands output by remixing their work, and vice versa, Marbert Rocel put their trademark sonic stamp on other artsist’s tracks by remixing Lana Del Rey, Pentatones, Marek Hemmann and Clueso. They all asked for remixes and they’ve all got them.
Marcel Robert has been playing live shows as a band since 2007. Their tours have lead them to well known German venues like the Watergate in Berlin or to Conne Island in Leipzig and even further across the nation’s borders, to Amsterdam, Istanbul, Rome, Milano, Bratislava and Moscow. The band continually worked on expanding their live show and proved to be a valuable addition to festivals like Fusion, Day At The Park or Nachtdigital. 2010 and 2011 were two years that brought significant changes for Marbert Rocel. Philipp Millner left the Band to concentrate on the duo Hundreds and was followed by Martin Kohlstedt. Right about the same time, the Nachtdigital crew surprised the band with a shrewd idea: an exclusive festival live set together with Mathias Kaden and Michael Nagler. While jamming together, it became clear that what was only supposed a to be one time affair should become a real band. Karocel was born and released the Album “Plaited” on the renowned Label Freude am Tanzen. Simultaneously Marbert Rocel decided to relocate to Leipzig, where they settled in a bourgeoning old industrial quarter to built their new studio, iconically called Behind the Planes, after the fact that there is an actual plane parked on the roof of a nearby building. Again Marbert Rocel directly connected to their new environment with Leipzig booking office Buki Good now taking care of the bands future live dates.
Friendship, human togetherness and a deep rooted DIY mentality is what defines Marbert Rocel. The latter becomes especially apparent in self designed cover artworks and self produced video Clips. A band utopia of 4 individualists who are equally able to express themselves solo. This approach, to create a communal effort with 4 distinctively individual voices, is something apparent in every note on “In The Beginning”, the band’s 4th album created in 2014/15.
A place far away from everything, yet right around the corner. A vision close enough to touch, yet so far away. Surrounded by keys, hatches, pots and small fragmented parts, Marbert Rocel lie down, discuss and dance through the winter of 2015. In this environment, in their studio in Leipzig, the band ties together the songs, which first saw the light of day in a small spot enclosed by woods in the summer of 2014. Each decision goes through every head, each chord is listened to a hundred times, from font to back and in reverse, each compromise: a triumph for the common cause. Not pompoous string arrangements fuel this album with grandeur, but rather the notion of a consensual nod, which has evolved within Marbert Rocel over the years. “In the Beginning” is the fourth album by Marbert Rocel, a living utopia and a tart kiss for every purist genre lover. Nothing is hewn raw on here, rather sculptured delicately. Percussion is tickling from synth pads like dew, and the songs welcome you like good friends. Like Tinkerbell, Spunks voice guides through this strange familiar world, moving past big feelings and small gestures, to finally lead to where it all started: “In The Beginning”.
(photo by Sandra Ludewig)
01. 80 Horses
02. Always On My Mind
03. Make Me Walk
04. Up To You
06. Dawn Of The Day
07. Unwillingly Close
08. Dance Slow
09. Bird Of Passage
10. Hold On
11. Me, Myself And I
12. With Your Love
The album Marbert Rocel “In The Beginning” (Compost) is going to be released October 9, 2015.