Al Berkowitz are an Art-Rock ensemble led by the composer and producer Ignacio Simón, who were founded in 2006 after the Spanish psychedelic band, ‘The Inhabitants’ merged with the American beatnik Aldous Berkowitz.
Their sound delicately blends experimental rock and psychedelic folk which is then gently fused together with a proportionate helping of baroque pop. The result is both enticing and original, with strong compositions and lush harmonies emerging from this joining of forces.
Between the Autumn of 2011 and the Spring of 2012, Al Berkowitz self-produced their 2nd studio album which was to be their first release since 2009. Titled “A long hereafter/Nothing beyond”, this album was recorded in Cadiz and Madrid receiving critical acclaim throughout Spain and Europe upon its release.
In April this year a revised version of this album was re-released and is now available worldwide via the independent indie-folk label Tempel Arts. Drawing upon named influences such as Robyn Hitchcock, Grizzly Bear, Charles Ives’s and Takemitsu, this album takes you to a place where experimentation thrives. This is a place where folk meets psychedelia, where the contrast of dreamy landscapes and dark melancholic tones collide with intensity.
It is easy to hear the influence of Grizzly Bear in tracks such as ‘Farewell, My Lady’ where the big expanse of sound booms out with mighty force but, whilst it is easy to detect these comparisons, Al Berkowitz maintains their own original sound throughout.
As described in a press release, ”A Long Hereafter/Nothing Beyond’draws a genuine and unclassifiable musical universe, where every little detail seems to fit in neatly. It features crushing harmonic affluence and expressionist, yet delicate, arrangements. The album’s eight tracks maintain a sincere and honest essence through opposing spirits and styles”.
This album is now available as a free download and is definitely something to be explored and savoured, it is both original and unique.
Download ‘A Long Hereafter/Nothing Beyond’ from their Bandcamp page here