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Reviews

2012-06-01, Oor

The best kept secret of Amsterdam's popmusic. That is Knalpot. Their first EP - Serious Outtakes, released in 2009 on Eat Concrete - got overlooked by OOR.nl. Stupid. This duo makes a mix of jazz, electronics and jazz that is much more exciting than many other electronic pop acts of today. But, and there lies the problem, the stumbling beats' of Knalpot are difficult to place. But precisely that is the charm of Raphael Vanoli and Gerri Jäger, a German and Austrian that ended up in the dutch capital. The two are trained as jazz musicians, but grew up with grunge and metal.

On Sauce the two keep drawing the line that started with Serious Outtakes. Knalpot sounds somewhere between Battles (remember them?), Partisans and the old Scorn.   That means no easy listening. Rhythms (asynchronous, polyrhythmic), searing guitars and samples tumble over each other. It takes a while to discover structure in this chaos, but that's worth the effort. Sauce sounds like a short improvisation in dubstep, opener Stainlees rubs close against mathcore. The closing track AV III tops it of: threatening, frightening and intensely black. It has something from dubstep, but really isn't that. Knalpot is even better live than on record. And that really means something.

THEO PLOEG

2010-12-03, DJWM 2010

A hop, skip and a jump away from Arifa at the Welkweg, is the Sugar Factory (literally, a hop, skip and jump!) but at complete opposite ends of the musical spectrum in terms of sound, was my last band of the night Knalpot.

I have to declare right at the start that I loved this band. I'd never heard of them, but as soon as I set foot in the Sugar Factory, it felt 'right'. Very atmospheric lighting and an intimate feel set the tone. Described as a two man orchestra, Knalpot took to the stage, one drummer, one guitarist, both wearing what looked like hats made from old vinyl lps.

The music, I guess was a cross between, Sigur Ros, Audrey and Jonnesu 1886 (sic). Pounding, rhythmic drums, rock lead guitar but...with live samples and loops, an array of distortion pedals and effect boxes all greating a great noise from the two muisicians. I loved it how they would have to play the drums and guitar one handed as they used the other hand to set off the samples and loops etc.
It was a great set and I'm looking forward to seeing them again.

Oh I almost forgot. So where is the world or jazz element here? Well as the drummer said during the set 'you might not know it but the jazz ethos is in there' and who am I to argue with him?

2009-08-01, Dagblad van het Noorden

They call their music "lo-fi stumblin' groove alarm." The fact is that drummer Gerri Jäger and guitarist/electronicsfreak Raphael Vanoli - who call themselves Knalpot - met at the Amsterdam Jazz Conservatory, love old computergames, loopstations and bitcrushers, fuzz guitars, stumbling beats, soundscapes and noise. Their self-titled debut evokes associations with various bands like Gang of Four, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Big Black, Can and Holy Fuck, but still stands on its own. Jazzy themes, ambient melodies and funky rock grooves are dissected with complex rhythms, obstructive sounds and moments of total soundchaos. The improv-electro rock of Knalpot, named after the Indonesian word for exhaustion pipe, is not easily digestible, but therefore even more fascinating and at times alienating.

2008-07-01, ROCK-A-ROLLA issue 15

At a push it'd be possible to sqeeze Knalpot into the punkfunkelectro bag, but the seams wouldn't hold the duo for long. Sounding a lot more organic than other similarly tooled outfits, their music is stuffed with loops, blips and Mulder melodies. With the fat Casio bass lines, live drums and a guitar that moves between riffs and wondering, this dipped duo effortlessly slip between sonic approaches. With a freshness that summons up a sunny-day-stoned Can or a jazz quartet freed from a dictatorial star player, Knalpot are onto something.

Scott McKeating

Quotes

jazzenzo

KNALPOT stands for development, inventiveness, acuteness and vitality. What else do you wish to get from music?

kindamuzik

A highlight of Eurosonic/Noorderslag Festival 2010

Utrechts Dagblad

The future of Dutch music

Stream Magazine

Probably the best rock duo that surfaced in The Netherlands in 2009. Guitar, electronics, drums and an immense dose of energy

Rock-a-rolla

With a freshness that summons up a sunny-day-stoned Can or a jazz quartet freed from a dictatorial star player, Knalpot are onto something.

Scott McMillan

Despite their limited number, they manage to sound like a bastard hybrid of a load of Rune Grammofon and Warp bands - the skronk of Supersilent, the punk of MoHa, the mathematics of Battles, and the electronic of Pivot.

draaiomjeoren

The most exceptional band of the festival surely was Knalpot, consisting of two experimenters of sonic worlds: Raphael Vanoli and Gerri Jäger … It is really thrilling and pleasing to see such courageous pioneers exist.

Bimhuis

KNALPOT sounds like a motorbike race between Radiohead, Clark and Squarepusher

Fret magazine

An avalanche of dub, noise, rock, drum 'n bass and jazz

euforion

Their 'nu-generator tractor music' full of lo-fi grooves and unexpected combinations turned the crowd crazy. Definitely one of the most memorable nights at Club behind Mirror.





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music
Yes please (2014) Sauce EP (2011) Serious Outtakes EP (2009)