|Whilst we do not profess to be DAAU experts, we can at least try to give you a little background on this wonderful Belgian band! DAAU were the original reason Elissa and Mandi met and became friends so we have a lot to love them for!!!
Passionate, exciting, unconventional, unique, fresh contemporary and totally idiosyncratic - just some of the ways that DAAU (Die Anarchistische Abendunterhaltung)'s music can be described, without ever really getting to the heart of what makes them so special - because that can't ever be put into words. It simply has to be experienced to be believed. Completely unlike anything else before.
in Antwerp in 1992 by Roel Van Camp, Han Stubbe and the Lenski brothers
while attending the conservatoire, having taken their name from a passage
from 'Steppenwolf' by Hermann Hesse, these four young Belgians
gave as their debut offering a remarkable and beautiful cover (incorporating
some of their own composition and improvisation into the song, which
De Anarchisten (as they became known throughout the Lowlands) were quickly signed to the same management company as dEUS, Moondog Jr, and all of Rudy Trouve's musical (ad)ventures, Musickness, and toured widely with Moondog Jr throughout 1995/6. They released their eponymous debut LP in 1995 on Jack&Johnny Records, to much critical acclaim. However, the (by now) infamous naked photographs of the band on the sleeve insert caused so much eyebrow-raising within the record company that, when the LP was re-issued by Columbia a year later, the artwork was completely changed. (If perchance you have not seen these photos and would like to, mail us and we can sort you out with copies, seeing as how we got a little... nervous about having them on a Geocities site. ;D)
No matter what sleeve the album comes in, it is a truly awesome debut. Although somewhat unoriginal in choosing titles for their songs (every track is entitled 'Drieslagstelsel', the meaning of which is apparently 'Crop Rotation'), the sheer inventiveness of the music more than makes up for the lack of invention in titles.
After a heavy tour schedule of over 2 years, in 1997 DAAU eventually released their second album 'We Need New Animals' having signed to Sony Classical. On this album, they broke new ground by introducing live drummers, bassists and singers (notably An Pierle, and Angelique Willkie (ex-Zap Mama)), and incorporating new styles such as reggae and trip-hop into their sound, working again with David Bovee on 'Waltz Delire' and 'Lady Delay', and issuing a remarkable CD single of remixes of 'Gin&Tonic' mixed by such luminaries as Cinerex and Dr. Olive.
Many reviewers have attempted to sum up their fusion of styles using invented phrases like 'clasjazz', but truly this music includes elements from all genres, right across the board, in much the same way that Beck incorporates elements into his music - seamlessly weaving together different styles with the same youthful energy, passion, exuberance and beauty. Folk, classical, rock, gypsy, jazz, reggae, dub and trance come together to produce a truly original vision. Artistic without being artsy, avant-garde but never wilfully inaccessible, and boasting completely up-to-the-minute cutting-edge pop/rock sensibilities, stunning virtuosi talents, youth, intelligence, inspiration, a 'sex-and-drugs-and-rock'n'roll' reputation and buckets of sex appeal, it was obvious from the outset that DAAU were going to capture the imagination of critics and public alike.
Having by now completed his 7-year-long study of composition and gaining his Master's degree, Adrian Lenski has joined DAAU permanently on the piano, bringing in his formidable writing and performing skills and experience.
The third album, 'Life Transmission' was released earlier in 2001 to critical and public acclaim. It is a natural successor to 'We Need New Animals' and has moved further in dub/reggae and electronica directions, whilst still retaining a lot of the elements which have stood them in good stead since their debut album. Indeed, on 'A Sin So Nasty' in particular, Simon's once-quoted desire to make "gypsy-music with bleeps" seems to have been completely realised. The first two singles released, 'Mary Go Round' (featuring a rap by Ya Kid K of ex-Technotronic fame) and 'Piano Dub' (vocals provided by Angelique Willkie) have sold extremely well throughout Europe, and the album has many stand-out tracks such as 'Freeze', 'Voodoo Sim' (which gained a partial release as a radio-only promo single) 'Lampshade' (partly based on a previous composition by Adrian) and 'A Radical Chinese Duke', which recalls much of their early material.
DAAU also toured a great deal in 2001, playing the Montreux Jazz Festival, De Nachten, Lokerse Feesten, Robodock in Holland, Boterhammen in 't Stad, and many other dates throughout France, Belgium and Switzerland, and many venues in the Netherlands.
Early in 2002, the band parted company with Sony for good, and began their own independent record label, Radical Duke Entertainment. The first release from this new label was a mini-album entitled "Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain", featuring music written by DAAU for a dance piece by Thierry Smits with his dance company Thor, and includes studio versions of performance tracks including the live favourite 'Orange', along with film clips of the dance piece. You can see photos of this modern dance theatre extravaganza at http://www.limburg.be/dansinlimburg/richardofyorkfoto.html and at the dance company's own website, http://www.thor.be...
...And on April 30th 2002 at De Kaaiman in Antwerp, DAAU hosted their 10th Birthday Party, with a live performance by the guys, free food (organic frites and home-made mayonnaise!) , free beer and a special audience-participation rendition of 'Happy Birthday To You' led by Angelique Willkie!
For more up-to-date news, particularly about upcoming dates, the Die Anarchistiche Abendunterhaltung Unofficial Site at http://www.yurk.net/daau/ ,owned by Hanno Bunjes, is the best source of reliable up-to-the-minute information. The band's previous Official Website, at http://www.daau.com/, is now more than a little dead, except for its message board, and for the moment all things officially DAAU is located at http://daau.20m.com/ but which currently only comprises a list of live dates planned for 2002. You can also now buy official DAAU merchandise, including a fine selection of t-shirts and CD's, by sending an e-mail begging for an Adobe Acrobat catalogue to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to see our (much, much, much less than complete!) Discography, please click on the link below. If you would like to see our lovely pictures of DAAU (we've got simply LOADS of exclusive and personal photos to show off!) please visit our Gallery by clicking on the page links listed below. We strongly recommend joining the DAAU Yahoogroups Internet Community - sign up today at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/daau/!
The Daau Gallery! Many pages of exclusive photographs by La Elissa and Mandi Apple!
Gallery 1] [Daau Gallery 2] [Daau
Gallery 3] [Daau Gallery 4]
DAAU wallpaper, see Gallery 20.