Hubert von Goisern


GRENZENLOS >> Concert Reviews: 1 2 3 4

A yodeller goes around the world

Echo Online 25th November 2002 | Text: Stefan Benz | Photo: Dagmar Mendel

Musical ethnology: folk and world music with the accordion

Hubert von GoisernDarmstadt - When Hubert von Goisern ecstatically works the bellows, his accordion seems like a classic rock instrument. He plays so naturally with the blues, that you ask yourself, why the boy from The Who actually once smashed guitars. And would Jimi Hendrix also not have been able to set fire to an accordion?

Hubert von Goisern makes folk and world music with the accordion, reconciles Austro with Afro sound. He played for two and a half hours on Sunday in the full hall of the Darmstadt Centralstation and took his audience on a journey from Bad Goisern to Memphis, and on to Ouagadougou or back into the Salzkammergut, where Hubert Achleitner was born 50 years ago in the market town of Goisern.

His music could appeal to many tastes and generations. There is as much there for the rock fan as for the polyglot lover of folk music, but on this evening, above all mature men and women came, who are less on the lookout for the motorbike club than the rambling club. The atmosphere is rather relaxed, but not exactly bubbling over, even if Hubert and his six musicians heighten the tempo.

Von Goisern has studied experimental music, travelled Tibet and the Black Continent, here and there he has come very close to the Musikantenstadl with his hit Koa Hiatamadl, but for a long time he has moved expertly between all styles:a musical ethnologist, who also studies his own small nation critically, a globetrotter between alpine and Caribbean, for whom reggae and country dance lie very close to one another.

When the Fön gives him a headache again, then he grabs the trumpet and sings the blues. When the man at the mixing desk puts an echo on his voice, it sounds so near and also so far: like a song from alpine valleys, which an echo calls into the wide world. Percussionist Bernd Bechtloff provides for the exotic groove, singer Marlene Schuen blends soul and yodel.

Over two thirds of the evening, this world journey had a rousing swing, Goisern's globe rotated like a turntable, then it became more tranquil. Now ballads predominate and it sounds as if the globetrotter has come home again after so much restlessness: not completely fresh any more, but relaxed. Long, all too long they enjoy this inner reflection to the full, as if the alpenglow on the Dachstein behind them would damn them.

But such a magic does then not present itself any more at the end. It is a somewhat frittered away exit, but with it a departure after which you would gladly welcome Hubert from Goisern to Darmstadt again.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Berlin - 19th November 2002

2002 | Photos: © Spacerboy

Pop for the future

Aachener Nachrichten 23rd June 2002 | Text: Horst Schmidt

Hubert von Goisern at Burg Wilhelmstein: Since March Hubert von Goisern has been on a world tour with a six member band and is presenting the new programme Grenzenlos.

The one concert of the tour which the world musician leads to Germany goes on stage in the completely sold-out Burg Wilhelmstein. It was certainly one of the most memorable concerts that has ever been seen at the Burg. For about two hours Hubert von Goisern, whose civil name is Hubert Achleitner, and his enthusiastic band delivered a thrilling concert.

All kinds of elements

On the basis of alpine folk music, the recording artist and composer born on the Tyrolean spa town of Bad Goisern joins elements of African, Asian and recently also Latin American music with blues, jazz, funk reggae and soul. The singer and multi-instrumentalist mixes these only seemingly difficult to combine components to a convincing musical mixture, for which the expression "world music" is extremely fitting. Von Goisern is one of the very few musicians who can claim to have created a completely original, unmistakeable musical style.

Not for the masses

It is certainly not music for the masses, but for everybody who keeps an open ear for the great variety of music on our planet, Hubert von Goisern's world music is a real revelation. Perhaps the future of pop music lies in such fruitful musical dialogues between the musical cultures of the world, as Hubert von Goisern successfully practises.

At any rate, the audience at the Burg was utterly inspired and expressed their thanks to the musicians with standing ovations for a concert about which people will be talking for a long time. And Hubert von Goisern also looked visibly happy at Burg Wilhelmstein. He said "I will return!" Hopefully soon.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Bamberg - 29th June 2002

26th August 2002 | Photos: © Heidi Domnig

The alpine rocker in the quarry of world music

Allgäuer Zeitung 23rd July 2002 | Text: Klaus-Peter Mayr

Hubert von Goisern commutes between Austria and Africa and draws his audience under his spell

Hubert von Goisern blossomed out to a phenomenon on the music scene. He made his breakthrough many years ago with revolutionary alpine rock then he took a long break. And now the multi-instrumentalist from Bad Goisern in the Dachstein area is touring successfully again through the land, luring 5000 people to the Burghalde open air stage in Kempten on two wonderful summer evenings and being the kind of thing for completely different age groups, especially those over 30 with his original mixture of new alpine folk music, rock, pop and world music. Hubert von Goisern, that is no longer the man from the Alps who makes world music, but the world musician whose alpine roots are still firm. He uses the rhythms of the world as a quarry. Reggae and rock, blues and funk. And lots of Africa, which has almost become a second home in the past years, he goes there so often in order to get new inspiration. "I want to sharpen my senses," he says. The fruits of his journeys have become desirable goods. His sounds has consequentially become full of percussion, supported by a very forceful bass. A violin provides for a shot of the exotic. He only starts playing the accordion, his expertly played trademark, in homeopathic doses, rather grabbing hold of the electric guitar (and also the flute, flugelhorn, drum, harmonica). More than ever, he is a searcher, one whose open-minded thoughts are going far afield, forming meditative songs from time to time. With that one cannot make the people freak out - but can cast a spell over them. He allowed a long time after the support act of young Pina and her band until he stepped onto the stage, presenting pieces from his last two albums and new, not yet released material. And then he allowed a long time until he packed away the diatonic and all the other instruments. He allowed himself and the audience encore upon encore. Only the real storytellers do that.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Bad Ischl - 28th July 2002

2002 | Photos: © Friederike Sax

A sound hurricane of electric guitars and accordion: Hubert von Goisern

Oberhessische Presse 26th June 2002 | Text: Martina Westermann | Photo: © Martina Westermann

Hubert von Goisern on the Schiffenberg stage

Hubert von Goisern - SchiffenbergGießen. "You can pack up the Austrian flag again. I am not here at the football," Hubert von Goisern skilfully says to a member of the audience in the first row. Grenzenlos is the title of his current tour.

The music of the multitalent Hubert Achleitner, who comes from Bad Goisern, is also without frontiers. Von Goisern, who sees himself as a world musician, filled 3000 people at the Schiffenberg with enthusiasm for two and a half hours, with funky yodel jazz, inspired Afro-groove and partly merry, partly primitively rocked "Gstanzl". There was certainly no room amongst them for national flags.

But despite the separation from the Alpinkatzen, despite musical excursions to Africa and into the Himalayas which have removed him far from the world of Hiatamadl, the brilliant multitalent is today still recognised by patriotic folk music fans as one of them. But this year the Hiatamadl (shepherdess) stayed in the meadow. He separated the wheat from the chaff in the audience with as yet unknown pieces from his new CD to be released in the autumn.

While it rocked, funked, jazzed and country danced on stage, some people moved away from the stage and others streamed forwards. First after the sensitive artist and his audience had sized each other up and had come closer together, the actual concert began.

The musician, so fascinating through his impressive authenticity, had so far played with his eyes closed, just for himself, now he turned to his audience, the more he gave, the more they went along. He presented pieces from the two albums Fön and Trad as well as the African Akipenda or the early Iawaramoi. It roared and raged powerfully like a storm in the old Klosterhof when the electric guitar and accordion swelled together to a sound hurricane. Dreamily warm like the starry summer night itself, Heast as net and Fia Di rang out.

Von Goisern is a globetrotter in musical things of alpine origin and folk music style which satirise the Zeitgeist with a sharp tongue.

So he adds to the quotation from the 94 CD Omunduntn "Ob Kroaten oder Serben, alle müssen sterben, ob Serben oder Kroaten um einen jeden ist es schade" ("Whether Croat or Serb, all must die, whether Serb or Croat, we'd miss everyone"), the variation "Ob Araber oder Juden, alle müssen sterben, ob Juden oder Araber um einen jeden ist es schade" ("Whether Arab or Jew, all must die, whether Jew or Arab, we'd miss everyone") influenced by the events in the Near East. At the same time, the multi-instrumentalist shines not only as a singing artist and yodel acrobat and on the Styrian accordion but also on the acoustic and electric guitars, on the horn, with the harmonica and the flute.

Premiere in Egypt and finale in Bad Ischl

Bad Ischler Rundschau 2nd August 2002: Text & Photos: Josef H. Handlechner

Alpine world music - Hubert von Goisern at his home concert in the Lehàrtheater

Bad Ischl - It is barely six months since Hubert von Goisern started his Grenzenlos tour in Egypt. He made the programme about the meeting with the foreign, the "different" in its varied forms.

One gives, the other takes - so "one" imagines it. That is practical and practised much more than one would like to believe. Actually almost every day. But not exactly (fortunately for all of us) what an artist in the range of Hubert von Goisern imagines for a "meeting". Especially as the journey from Egypt went still further: to West Africa, to Senegal for instance, or to Burkina Faso. Getting involved with the unfamiliar, leaving trodden paths and safe ground, that is good for Hubert.

"Grenzenlos" stands as the motto for the current tour and that actually says enough about his way, which in the last weeks he has led through Germany, Switzerland, to Sarajevo and finally to Bad Ischl in the Lehàrtheater. Here the "finale" will be celebrated, in a deliberately small area, familiar almost. 200 minutes nonstop on the stage, in tropical temperatures. Reminder of Africa? Hubert: "Hopefully it will remain as nice in the next days, because now at last I have some time again."

The last weeks were hard, scarcely an opportunity to rest. "But it was a good time," summed up tour manager Hannes Heide and fetched everyone on stage who mostly stands in the background, providing for the sound and for the light and so on. A few of them have been there from the start, it has already been thirteen years Heide himself in any case.

That his audience went along the Grenzenlos way can please Hubert von Goisern and his musicians (Bernd Bechtloff, Burkhard Frauenlob, Antonio Porto, Marlene Schuen, Gerhard Überbacher and Bernhard Wimmer). In the next weeks it's into the studio, the new CD will probably be released in the autumn.

Hubert von Goisern: Live in Lörrach - 18th July 2002

2002 | Photo: © Bernd Hebel
Hubert von Goisern & Band

High energy border crossings

Süd Kurier 22nd July 2002 | Text: Martin Raab

Stimmen Festival: Hubert von Goisern on Grenzenlos tour in Lörrach

It is only a few musical bars from alpine rock to world music, and the milk churn between all the other more or less foreign percussion instruments fits in best here by appearance and by sound when Hubert von Goisern reaches for South American rhythms on the keys of his accordion in the Lörrach Marktplatz or sings broad Austrian dialect in Township rhythms.

Overcoming boundaries with music and coming to an understanding: the Lörrach Stimmen festival wants nothing less this year. Hubert von Goisern was already a frontier-crosser years ago when he travelled around still with his Alpinkatzen; but stays in Asia and Africa have once again audibly extended his musical horizons. He proves this with his Grenzenlos tour which he took to Lörrach on Thursday.

Hubert von Goisern swept across the stage like a musical whirlwind. The 50 year old took hold of the accordion and guitar, played the trumpet, flute and harmonica.

With all that he allowed his musicians a great deal of room: violinist Marlene Schuen, percussionist Bernd Bechtloff, drummer Bernhard Wimmer, guitarist Gerhard Überbacher, bass player Toni Porto and keyboarder Burkhard Frauenlob could blossom again and again in long solos.

The instrumental Volxjammer opens the Marktplatz concert, the jazzy Fön forms a first high point. The folksy humorous Stadltür follows the critical-ironic Katholisch. Onto the new Poika he attaches the familiar Iawaramoi: Hubert von Goisern plays and plays and plays for almost three hours. He and his band add three encores then he comes onto the stage again alone for two short pieces.

Hubert von Goisern unites the only seemingly incompatible, jazzes up alpine melodies with rock and jazz, lays Latin and funk over traditional tunes. Softer singsong and hard beats, warbled yodels and driving rhythms meet - the Austrian serves a high energy blend. But he does it all with so much naturalness and such self-confidence that these style mixtures seems neither artificial nor an attempt to curry favour.