CLUBKAARTSHOWWednesday 16 March
Lo-fi college rock from Rotterdam
Lewsberg has been a remarkable band in the Netherlands for a couple of years. Their sound can be described as robust, three-chord rocksongs witout any refinement. In English with a thick Rotterdam accent, singer Van Vliet talks more than he sings. Guitarist Michiel Klein is the distorter, suddenly jumping in with a minutes-long solo that mainly exists of uncomfortable screeching feedback.
Change sometimes comes in great waves, and sometimes in small steps. This seems to be happening simultaneously on ‘In Your Hands’, the newest album of Lewsberg. The second song, ‘The Corner’ is a remarkably discrete song: the violin plays a simple melody, a gentle drumloop stays on top of it. “This brick is a brick to build” is sung, but later: “This brick is a brick to throw”. A brick offers many opportunities. Perhaps as part of something bigger which is yet to come, or as a simple stone that is laying on the floor. After all, most cases are relative. Destroying something can achieve more than building it. You are fooling yourself if you think you can estimate what is needed when.
‘In Your Hands’ embodies the moment when all bricks are ready to be used, but the first wall is yet to be constructed. A moment filled with perspective, where everything is still possible and being careful is still required. The album sounds smaller and more spacious than previous albums. Chords are being strum instead of hit, the bass guitar receives more space for melodic explorations, the drum kit is dismantled to only a tom and a tambourine. Lyrically, doubt can be heard, but doubt of the strong kind. This can be in the way of a wrong decision, but it also can invite to having a fruitful conversation.
The old Lewsberg is expertly demolished, and the building bricks are open to use. Ready for future applications and simultaneously completely finished. ‘In Your Hands’ therefore is an ode to this potential and a call to cautiously offer space for this. Exactly what we need at this moment. However, if I would state that, I would have learned nothing from Lewsberg.