Hubert von Goisern


BRENNA TUATS TOUR >> Concert Reviews: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Munich - 21st April 2012

26th April 2012 | Photos: © Elli Christl

Hubert von Goisern in Regensburg

Die Oberpfalz 24th April 2012 | Text & Photo: Verena Merl

Hubert von GoisernREGENSBURG. On Friday 20th April Hubert von Goisern made a stop on his Brenna tuats guad tour in Regensburg in the sold out Donau Arena. At 8pm on the dot the singer-songwriter and his 3 man band came on stage. Only slowly does he turn around to his audience and is immediately rewarded with applause.

You can see that it is fun for him. Time and again he turns to once of his band colleagues. Whether Severin Trogbacher on the guitar or Alex Pohn on drums, you can see that the quartet played music with heart and soul. He leads the way through his diverse repertoire with short stories. He also hopes that the Bavarian audience could understand him. He assures them that he was understood by the whole audience at a show in Lower Saxony. This brings the first laughter of the evening. His dialect and way of talking make him very likeable. The Upper Austrian, whose real name is Hubert Achleitner and who was born in Bad Goisern, often talks about love for his native country and he comes across as traditional and cosmopolitan.

He can barely be pigeonholed with his music. World music, new folk music or alpine rock? We find that there's something of everything. It's the rhythms and lyrics that stay with you. He talks of Saint Heidrun and says that you can call on a saint in any situation and plays the song Heidi halt mi. He tops off his traditional folk music with modern elements, unusual instruments and bell chimes. From song to song, more emotions grow in the audience. You can see how the fans get involved with the music. They clap along and sing along with some songs. With the choruses in particular the audience sings diligently along. He sings about the mountain world - you can see it in your mind's eye straight away - and of elemental forces. His lyrics are concerned with life, special moments, custom and the mountains.

He sings mostly his new songs. But of course there's Hirtamadl, Weit, weit weg von Dir too. And of course the current hit Brenna tuats guad isn't missing either! He plays almost 2 hours without a break. He also happily had his arm twisted for a few encores and the audience thanked him with prolonged applause. There was a particularly special atmosphere in the standing rows right in front of the stage. Glow sticks were often seen during the slow songs. It was a really successful concert with "modern folk music". People went happily to their cars after the concert too. Hubert von Goisern's songs could be heard from a number of car radios too, in particular the current hit Brenna tuats guat. For many fans it certainly won't be their last visit.

Sublime journey back to the roots

Oberpfalznetz 23rd April 2012 | Text: Wolfgang Houschka

At almost 60 Hubert von Goisern lets rip again - an enthused audience of 5000 in Regensburg

REGENSBURG. The man has returned to his roots. No more experiments, the journey from Bad Ischl to Timbuktu is over. All a piece of a thoroughly notable music history. But now, thank God, things are wild again. "Just like it used to be", to use a song title from his Austrian colleagues STS. Hubert von Goisern, 60 in a few months, lets rip - and 5000 people in the Donau-Arena in Regensburg are beside themselves.

Genius from Bad Goisern

Can it be that we've missed something. Must one dress in country Tracht to go to Goisern nowadays? Like in Musikantenstadl, when people dance the Jägermarsch through the hall? Hubert Achleitner from Upper Austria was never one to put knee-jerk uniformity on stage. On the contrary: with his unclassifiable compositions this genius from Bad Goisern gave the highly necessary answer to folksy singsong, schunkeln in uniform Tracht and heartbreak that drips from the mountains into the beer tent steins.

Rocky "Hiatamadl"

The time of musical experimentation and deliberation, following new paths, seems to be over. Back to the roots and thus back to where it all began. Hubert von Goisern has three young musicians, each better than the next. They could be his sons, they were probably still in primary school when Hiatamadl landed the first thunderbolt in the Austrian's career. Of course he has this song in his set. Sometime at the end. And look: the "fat calves" have become a rock 'n' roll song, pepped up.

There are two hours between the oldie and a furioso start. Hubert von Goisern makes the Indianer, he plays the lap steel, he unpacks the accordion, hangs the guitar over his shoulders and the harmonica plays a supporting role. When he yodels, it's like an eruption that breaks against the concrete walls of the hall. Nobody else can do it the way he does. Because then rock, blues and reggae combined with the original Upper Austrian folk music to an unbelievable whole. "Nobody is born for no reason", Hubert von Goisern sings in one of his songs. And suddenly there it is again, these goosebumps that he trigger in such a sublime way.

A log in the embers

The declaration of love carved in notes to his hometown Bad Goisern turns out to be a soft message that can confidently rival Fendrich's I am from Austria. And then Weit, weit weg. Previously in duet with a woman's voice, now alone. He manages that effortlessly and impressively too. A classic, almost a Goisern monument.

There has to be the new. Brenna tuat's from the album Entwederundoder brings the arena to boiling point. And Hubert von Goisern lays a log in the embers to spark a worldwide wildfire: "if we keep on stoking, it'll all go to hell". Achleitner, you're cult and culture in one person!

Goisern in the Circus Krone: Barely to be believed

Münchner Merkur 23rd April 2012 | Text: Zoran Gojic | Photo: © Falke

Munich - wild, exciting and pulsating: Hubert von Goisern shows at his concert in the Circus Krone that he is one thing above all: an amazing musician.

Hubert von GoisernIt was the finest Southern rock, played pretty down to earth and loud. With echoes of blues, country and hard rock. Beautifully played, wild, exciting and pulsating. It was Hubert von Goisern on stage. If you hadn't been in the completely sold out Circus Krone in Munich yourself, you probably wouldn't have believed it.

And certainly not the fact that the audience completely flipped out. The fans, from minors to retirees eagerly sucked up the new songs, the new sounds and celebrated von Goisern, who in his 60th year has opened up a whole new musical cosmos again. The manic energy the Austrian throws into this music, how he internalises and lives it is simply unbelievable. The special, compelling thing about it is of course that it still nonetheless sounds like von Goisern, and not just because of the lyrics in dialect. Von Goisern gives the pieces their own touch. Jointly responsible are also the musicians he has gathered around him, who put such passion into the show, you'd have thought it was a matter of life or death for them.

Of course von Goisern also unpacks his accordion and plays the folk rock pieces that made him famous. But he interprets them in a new way, raw, rebellious. With the wisdom of age von Goisern allows singing along to hits like Weit, weit weg, because: "singing is healthy, even if it doesn't sound so good for everyone". He played the unavoidable Koa Hiatamadl in the encores as a crisp punk rock number and then said goodbye to the completely intoxicated crowd with a minimalistically arranged Heast as nit. An amazing concert from an obsessed man. And I was there!

The musical eruption glowing with power

Mittelbayerische Zeitung 22nd April 2012 | Text: Angelika Lukesch

Vocally, linguistically, musically powerful: Hubert von Goisern thrills his 5500 fans in the Donauarena.

REGENSBURG. The Donauarena has rarely been so full of expectant guests for a concert as on this evening. Hubert von Goisern came on stage with his beautifully playing band and straightaway let the omnipotence of Goisern music be felt with the accordion. He was supported by his guitarist Severin Trogbacher, bass player Helmut Schartlmüller and the drummer Alexander Pohn.

On 17th November Hubert von Goisern will celebrate his 60th birthday. You don't see these six decades in him in his - incidentally low key - stage performance. Much more you get the impression that Hubert von Goisern likes to go against time and gets ever wilder, more passionate and uncompromising with his music.

Whether playing his number 1 hit Brenna tuat's guat, which also give the tour its name, likes a devil's ride with the accordion through sound and rhythm, or singing I versteh di nit with such passion as if it was the last time, or presenting the long-spurned Hiatamadl with Goiserish zeal and enjoying the joy of the audience, there are no half measures with Hubert von Goisern, in neither music, his feelings, nor in his life.

Does he die down afterwards?

The Upper Austrian impresses with his splendour with which he plays a variety of instruments: accordion, guitar, Jews' harp, clarinet, piano and more. All these instruments and of course the haunting sound of his voice do just one thing: facilitating the passion that Hubert von Goisern spreads in all his songs.

The feeling creeps up on the listener that all this, all the wild music, the folk music rock sounds, the alpine punk yodel can only be a prelude to an even more powerful Goisern eruption, after which nobody can really imagine how things would look after all this temperament exposed at the Regensburg concert and whether Hubert von Goisern would simply die down afterwards.

You hope not, because there is an animalistic power when the Upper Austrian picks up an instrument, drawing on folksy rhythms and then defamiliarising them when he sings about his hometown of Goisern with casual melancholy, sings Weit weit weg with unbridled longing and even sings his farewell song Leb wohl with sadness in his voice.

Wild and uncompromising

It was a musical high altitude euphoria into which Hubert von Goisern pulled his audience in the Donauarena. The feeling wavers from rhythm to rhythm, craving the next harmony, the next syncope and the next jubilant yodel that simultaneously proves his love for folk music and presents rebellion against the responsible constraining undertow of so-called tradition.

There are no smooth lines with Hubert von Goisern, you have to brace yourself for anything in his music, for the wild and uncompromising in particular. In a world in which the adaptability to desirable qualities is extolled, Hubert von Goisern's nonconformism is good for the soul. Even if he didn't talk much to the audience - he was understood nonetheless.

Flaming instruments

Fränkische Nachrichten 21st April 2012 | Text: Jörg-Peter Klotz | Photo: © Rinderspacher

More than 2000 people celebrate Hubert von Goisern's new rock purity

Hubert von GoisernWorld music international understanding has long been routine for Hubert von Goisern. Consequently the former alpine rocker has experimented a little and possibly noticed that the album title from 2008 also applies: S'nix (Nothingness). After that album he was horrified by how simple the ideas for songs were that were suddenly thrusting themselves upon him - and on Entwederundoder discovered the desire for ethnic rock purity. The reward: his hitherto most successful record, his first single hit in Germany and a tour that far more people than the 2000 in the seated Rosengarten want to see.

Fun in simplicity

The fun to be had in simplicity reveals itself at first glance: the minimal rock formation of bassist Helmut Schartlmüller, guitarist Severin Trogbacher, shining in solos, and drummer Alexander Pohn accompany von Goisern. The sound turns out to be by no means monochromatic: the concert begins with psychedelic celestial sounds, which turn into a gentle zweifacher rhythm, before things become as hard as nails - with Üouö for Überoberunterösterreicher the quartet makes clear that you can expect a broad spectrum in the next two hours. Responsible for this is above all the main star, who for the most part plays the accordion, but also knows how to handle the guitar, e-piano, Jews' harp, clarinet, glockenspiel, harmonica and lap steel - and on top of that come his qualities as a storyteller, reminiscent of Bruce Springsteen.

Many styles are set on the solid rock base: in the Dylan-esque Suach da an andern the rhythm is funky, the galloping Indianer begins with a kind of western surf sound, I versteh di nit offers cracking slide guitar blues, Heidi halt mi spreads swinging ease and the clarinet lets Es is wias is begin like a jazz standard. The previously clap-along-phobic von Goisern even lets in a "nanananana" hit anthem like Halt nit an.

The fact that von Goisern at first focuses almost exclusively on the new material troubles nobody in view of the fascinatingly compact band performance. Two cover versions then lead into the second part of the set: the sophisticated homeland ballad Goisern and Mercedes Benz (based on Ray Charles and Janis Joplin). The latter impresses with the apparently wild improvisations and style digressions of the musicians, who however never let the piece set between rock and reggae fall apart - thunderous applause!

As breathers come the piano ballad Leb wohl and the fervently singalong fan favourite Weit, weit weg, just as flaming harmonica solo is applauded as much. Before the encores, the title song of the tour, Brenna tuat's guat, is another highlight of up tempo rock and protest yodel. The song actually damns capitalism, but the song also describes Hubert von Goisern in 2012: he burns well.

A hurricane of a man

Nürnberger Nachrichten 20th April | Text: Peter Gruner | Photo: Günter Distler

Synthesis of the arts Hubert von Goisern and band play in Nuremberg

Hubert von Goisern

More photos at

Nuremberg - This man is simply a force: the Austrian world musician Hubert von Goisern and his band swept through the completely sold out Nuremberg Meistersingerhalle.

First of all: doing justice to Hubert von Goisern is basically beyond the scope of a concert review. The man is no less than a highly complex synthesis of the arts: talented musician on numerous instruments, singer, songwriter, innovator of alpine folk music, world musician, traditionalist and avant garde, globetrotter and political activist, actor and fashion designer, in short: the exact counterdraft to the cliché image of the reactionary Austrian whose horizon ends at the next mountain peak.

You expect the unexpected from somebody who one year sails the Danube with a large band and plays in harbours and then the next year tours through the taverns. And you're all the more surprised when he does something completely normal: playing in the usual concert halls with a small rock band.

But of course nonetheless after two hours you leave the sold out Nuremberg Meistersingerhalle happy and amazed: Hubert is a force in all formats. The songs of the new successful album Entweder und oder are stylistically multifaceted as usual and give the boss, beautifully supported by his young band of drums, bass and guitar, plenty of opportunity to shine as a multi-instrumentalist: hissing lapsteel guitar in I versteh di nit, clarinet in the beautifully melancholy Es is wias is, electric piano in the poignant ballad Lebwohl.

In between comes reggae dub with Styrian harmonica for the adaptation of the Janis Joplin classic Mercedes Benz and humorous remarks about the right way to deal with saints, bizarre fan mail, or inconsistencies in instrument construction. Hubert von Goisern is indeed an extremely committed, socio-critical person, but he refrains from sermons and inflammatory talk. He prefers to sing his political views, as in the stormy alpine rock of his current hit single: "Everyone knows that money doesn't grow on trees and you can't eat it either, but it burns well!"

Burning money: you can barely formulate criticism of capitalism any more provocatively. Meanwhile in Nuremberg just the air is burning with enthusiasm, as we hear time passing in the keenly demanded encores with the classic Heast es net. Hubert von Goisern meanwhile keeps looking forward ...

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Nuremberg - 18th April 2012

22nd April | Photos: © Elli Christl

Up to mischief with folk music

Nürnberger Zeitung 20th April | Text: Christian Mückl

Hubert von Goisern in the Meistersingerhalle

Nuremberg - There was a time when he forbade his audience to sing along, Hubert von Goisern reveals secrets from his career. They couldn't do what they liked just because they'd paid for a ticket, he thought back then. He is more lenient now. Singing is healthy, singing along is allowed. But please don't shout!

Hubert von Goisern is touring on the wave of success of his current hit Brenna tuats guat through sold out halls and along the way made a stop at the Meistersingerhalle.

It could be that Goisern was still feeling the effects of his previous celebrated "home game" in Vienna, because nobody in the sold out - but also seated - Nuremberg Meistersingerhalle was so quick to shout out. Apart from the fact that the fuse had to burn a little longer before the first people actually sang along, everything ran like clockwork here too. Just as his most recent hit asserts: it burns well.

The aforementioned ear worm and the avalanche-like success of the current album EntwederUndOder let a welcome gust of fresh air through the first part of the concert evening in particular. In front of an audience that had perhaps rather come for the old Goisern anthems, it might have been a gamble. But at the same time this courageous step into the new saved the programme from a degree of predictability. The fans reacted with concentrated attention.

World music and root systems

The concentration in the audience may have seemed confusing to the musicians at the front, for whom seated concerts are the exception on their Europe tour of around 100 concerts. But not for one moment was the varied programme soporific, even with the quiet passages.

Hubert von Goisern, this character with shining eyes, this multi-instrumental globetrotter with the chequered biography, is still up to sheer mischief in folk music. With equal abandon the 59-year-old man of the Alps lets it rock. His young, well-rehearsed band prove themselves after the departure of the three Ladin background singers - who now have their own career as Ganes - to be an appropriate format as a foursome to agilely cross between fine elements of world music, alpine root systems and driving dialect rock.

The old rebel gives his hometown "Goisern" a cool blues with the clarinet against too much sedentariness. He reconditions Janis Joplin's rock prayer Mercedes Benz as an accordion-driven special edition model complete with an Our Father sound. In Indianer, which gallops cheekily along complete with cow bells, the Goiserer rhymes "Pfeil und Bogen" (arrow and bow) with "riesige Hoden" (big balls), in Heidi hoit mi there's yodelling and in Weit weit weg the audience is his choir. Nobody shouted and it sounded brilliant.

So burns only Goisern 16th April 2012 | Text: Thomas Zeidler | Photo: © APA
Hubert von Goisern

Goisern "does it well"! Hard rock, trend hits & cabaret at his Vienna triumph.

At 20.04 hrs the house lights went out, at 20.06 hrs he stepped on stage and at 20.11 hrs after a great instrumental inferno, he really let loose. On Sunday evening at the full Vienna Museumsquartier Hubert von Goisern proved himself to be Austria's true folk rock 'n' roller; a musical virtuoso on a par with Prince on accordion, Jews' harp, electric guitar, lap steel, clarinet, acoustic guitar, keyboard and harmonica!

At high decibel level he mixed new trend hits like Nit lång her with classics such as Ob'n und Unt'n and cabaret-like lead-ins ("the Philharmonic Orchestra are all on drugs") to lessons as exciting as they were entertaining.

In the finale came the really big hits: Brenna tuat's guat as a furious stamp-along polka, Heast as nit and the long-spurned Hiatamadl. A real event!

Hubert von Goisern enchants Vienna

Heute 16th April 2012 | Photo: © Florian Bauer

Hubert von Goisern"It's great to be back here again" - with these words Hubert von Goisern welcomed the audience in the Vienna Museumsquartier on Sunday evening. For two and a half hours he and his three member band thrilled the sold out Halle E. The current album Entwederundoder was played in its entirety and the setlist was peppered with the biggest hits of years past.

In green trousers and a pink shirt the pedigree musician and multi-instrumentalist showed that Austrian folk music need not stay on just the shallow Musikantenstadl level, but mixed with blues, jazz and rock, can offer a thoroughly sophisticated sound that is at the same time highly entertaining.

Two and a half hours at the highest level

A big stageshow was done without. The three musicians who accompany Hubert von Goisern are absolute professionals on their instruments and so with help from lighting impressively setting the scene, produced a unique atmosphere. Mr von Goisern, whose real surname is Achleitner, was anything but tight-lipped and between the songs amused the crowd with anecdotes from his life.

Besides the new songs and the number one hit Brenna tuat's guat of course the old hits were there too. The ballads Weit, weit weg and Heast as net spread goosebumps through Halle E and in contrast Koa Hiatamadl, Iawaramoi or the dialect version of the Janis Joplin classic Mercedes Benz animated people to folksy rocking out.

Europe tour

The 59-year-old Upper Austrian is currently on an extensive tour with the new album and his number one hit. He'll be gracing Vienna with his presence again in the autumn; on 25th October the tour will take him to the Stadthalle. He meanwhile has three nominations for his new album Entwederundoder in the Amadeus Austrian Music Awards, which will take place on 1st May in the Vienna Volkstheater.

Hubert von Goisern pulls out all the stops

Kurier 17th April 2012 | Text: Werner Rosenberger

Hubert von Goisern brings people together: dirndls and lederhosen with dreadlocks, business attire with punk haircuts, police uniforms with Pink Floyd T-shirts. But no matter how they were dressed, or from which camp the audience members came to the MuseumsQuartier on Sunday evening, they were all entertained well.

For since the beginning of the 90s, Hubert Achleitner from Bad Goisern has combined Austrian folk music with blues and rock so ably and full of integrity, that fans of all these musical scenes have found their place. The two and a half hour concert (no, it wasn't a show - there was just bright light and a curtain with a dragon on it) was new proof of this.

Punk applause

Von Goisern and his three member band pulled out all the stops right from the start: accordion solos, so full of emotion that even the punks broke into spontaneous applause. Bass and guitar that provided the highlights of melancholy, quiet pieces with unusual sounds and surged ahead impetuously when the speed picked up. There was pure blues with I versteh di nit (I don't understand you) and a cover of Janis Joplin's Mercedes Benz, and jazz with Es is wias is (That's the way it is).

Besides the accordion Hubert von Goisern played clarinet, piano and guitar, entertaining the audience in between with almost comedic stories about how the songs came about. Nonetheless, the euphoric atmosphere in the MuseumsQuartier only developed after an hour. Weit, weit weg was the first highlight, Hiatamadl, the breakthrough hit from 1992, the second. And from Brenna tuats guat onwards, the punks and dreadlocks hopped and dance, jumped and sang with dirndls and lederhosen.


At the end there was tumultuous applause and an unplanned encore with a four voice a cappella yodel. A lovely evening - in which there could have been a great one. Which was more down to the audience than the musicians.

Hubert von Goisern lets nothing scorch in Vienna

Relevant 16th April 2012 | Text: APA | Photo: © Andreas Pessenlehner

Hubert von Goisern Hubert von Goisern has actually been on tour for a while. But mostly in Germany. On Sunday he thus greeted the big crowd of fans in the Halle E of the Museumsquartier very laid back: "Hi everyone,! Hello Vienna! It's good to be playing at home again."

The musician let it show too with his three member band of "Über Upper Austrians": a two-hour set that went down very well with the audience of a broad age range and included the first number one hit in the multifaceted musician's long career: Brenna tuats guat. And yesterday in Vienna, to where he will return on 25th October to make the Stadthalle rock, he let nothing scorch.

Nature boy, involved fellow man, world musician, alpine rock veteran and freeman of Bad Goisern - Hubert Achleitner, is all that and much more and will celebrate his 60th birthday on 17th November, just six months after Wolfgang Ambros, who, like the three-times nominated Hubert von Goisern, will be playing at the Amadeus Awards ceremony in the Vienna Volkstheater on 1st May. In terms of sympathy value with his fans, Hubert von Goisern definitely passes as an alpine Ambros and when it comes to the encores he reminds people that he doesn't just have something to say about love and life, forest and meadow, but also has something enduring to contribute to Austrian ski folklore. Hiatamadl, which "only" made it to number two in the Austrian charts 20 years ago briefly gives the auditorium the ski hut party feeling. Hubert von Goisern stands by his past. It wasn't always the case. In contrast to his Viennese colleague Ambros, the Upper Austrian is still top fit. As not just the fast tempo evening, but also the recent climb on the Hohen Dachstein, where double platinum for his current album Entwederundoder was celebrated.

As far as the planning for the extensive Entwederundoder tour is concerned, either/or was not a concern. With his Danube concert ship band now reduced to a small, but splendidly disposed crew of drummer Alexander Pohn, bass player Helmut Schartlmüller and the guitarist Severin Trogbacher, Hubert von Goisern will also be playing at the Festungsarena Kufstein (7.7.), Jedermannbühne Salzburg (11.-13.7.), Red Bull Ring Spielberg (14.7.), Burg Clam (3.8.), Römersteinbruch St. Margarethen (7.9.) and even at the Landungsplatz in Hallstatt (9.9.). This time he does without female backing vocals and a keyboarder and in this concentrated lineup, the boss's musical skills are pushed all the more centre stage: Hubert von Goisern plays guitar, Jews' harp, accordion, clarinet, cow bells, lap steel guitar and keyboard - keeping the agile stagehand in constant motion.

The anecdotes told between the songs stick in your mind as real ear worms, from the suffering of the young brass orchestra member, to the applied practice of being invisible like an Indian, which allowed fare dodger Hubert von Goisern to go unnoticed by conductors in Vienna for seven years. He doesn't manage to make himself invisible any more. And the musical request Suach da an Anderen (Find Somebody Else) remains unanswered by the fans. That the Vienna gig ultimately only offered sleek Sunday evening entertainment is fine. You can't always burn. Even if it would burn well.

Hubert von Goisern in Passau

Lichtgestalt Photography 17th April | Photo:  Lichtgestalt Photography

In the high mountains

Südwest Presse 16th April 2012 | Text: Uli Landthaler | Photo: Oliver Schulz

Hubert von Goisern satisfies in the Neu-Ulm Arena

Ulm. Back in the musical high mountains: On Saturday evening Hubert von Goisern swung between edgy alpine rock, singalong ballads and absolute gourmet fare in the Neu-Ulm Arena.

Hubert von GoisernHubert von Goisern has been around the world, appeared with Egyptian pop stars, made a concert trip to Mali and recently sailed on his own Danube concert ship down to the Black Sea, mooring everywhere and playing his gypsy world music for the audience on the shore. Now the Styrian guy is back in his mountain world and everyone's delighted to see him - including in the Neu-Ulm Arena.

Although he had not brought with him any specialities from the world music gourmet shelf this time, rather just three Upper Austrian blokes, who really made things bang: a drummer, a bass man, a guitarist and then Goisern as a multi-musical switchpoint between cow bells and clarinet.

Small band, big hall - can that work? It works and exactly for that reason. The roughly cut alpine rock penetrates loss-free right into the back rows of the arena, drummer Alex Pohn and bassist Helmut Schartlmüller generate a sublime force at the start with their protracted groove, like the fog lifting over the Dachstein massif.

Entweder und oder is the name of the tour for the record, meaning: there's wordplay and curious verse from the freethinker musician as usual. In uncompromising Styrian slang, von Goisern sings about the pain of parting and about the search for change, gives his commentary on the global financial crisis with Brenna tuats gut: meaning burning the money that doesn't grow on trees and can't be eaten either.

A singing do-gooder? Yes, but Hubert von Goisern can do that, you can take criticism of capitalism from someone who at the top of the charts sent the shepherdess packing and prescribed himself a long concert break, whereby musical self-identification took priority again.

The fact that 20 years after Hiatamadl Goisern is now filling the auditorium with songs behind which he stands himself, is an almost fairytale-like combination of commerce and quality. The singalong hit Weit weit weg from before is incidentally still there and so it must be, because a Goisern concert without ballads is like Austria without mountains. The special thing is that he has lots more besides.

Even if the concert has its pitfalls in that the sung lyrics are almost incomprehensible: somewhere in the Bermuda triangle between the acoustics of the concrete arena, the quality of the sound equipment and the art of the team at the desk in dealing with the conditions, many of the alpine bard's lyrics disappear into the valley of the unheard. And that's not just down to the dialect.

But the rest can be heard. Goisern isn't just a oddball, he's a splendid multi-instrumentalist too, who gallops across all style boundaries like no other, brushing against the grain of sound models and could probably make a string orchestra out of a bundle of shoelaces if he wanted to. He has no fear of cow bells and the Jews' harp and tells of his love-hat relationship with the uncool clarinet, only to then work it devotedly in warm, deep pitch like a saxophone.

And as sensational as ever: the Goisern accordion. it's long since gained a cult factor, because he was one of the first to drive the folksy dullness from the instrument. He demonstrates what one can do with it in the world of alpine rock, sets sounds like blows of the whip, overtakes the electric guitar on the inside and delivers a furioso duel with string artist Severin Trogbacher.

His version of Janis Joplin's Mercedes Benz is absolute gourmet fare, throwing together complexly arranged with every style between rock and reggae and giving each of the four musicians room to unfurl all their skill. Or to quote the introduction: this is the big Our Father, not the A Class. After Danube folk Hubert von Goisern is back in the musical high mountains. Welcome home.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Ulm - 14th April 2012

17th April 2012 | Photos: © Elli Christl