Serious candidates to be considered the authors of one of the brightest and most exciting records of 2018, more or less out of nowhere come Swiss outfit Soldat Hans. It’s true, the large ensemble from Wintherthur had already released a record in 2014 (Dress Rehearsal), but frankly, not having been crossed by us at that time (I challenge anyone to intercept any musical proposal that is put on the market, with the overabundance of these days) it seems to me a completely new name and, all things considered, I’m not even too interested in going over what has already been done, since the content of Es Taut is enough to make me reasonably believe that I’m in front of one of the highest musical expressions of a genre almost impossible to define, even if sticking the label post-metal would be able to fulfill the task with minimal effort and not going too far. The truth is that Soldat Hans (a strange moniker that can also be misleading, until you find out that it has something to do with the fairytale production of the Brothers Grimm) interpret the music in their own way, starting from an idea similar to doom, in which are then inserted elements of progressive, ambient, psychedelia, jazz and, of course, post metal: All this is displayed through an album like Es Taut, structured on only three tracks for a total of more than fifty minutes that are undoubtedly a challenging listening until, taken the measures with the Swiss sextet, you realize you are dealing with a musical expression that, net of some roughness, always has as its main target the melody. “What is genius? “we asked in the film Amici Miei: in the case of Soldat Hans, I would say that this corresponds to the ability to insert elements that at first sight are contrasting, within a structure that shows very few purely dissonant or experimental passages; everything flows precisely with a logic and a melodic sense that surprises, as well as every turn given to a compositional vis that, in a sort of crazy and lucid sonic kaleidoscope, transports the listener from Pink Floyd of Atom Heart Mother to AmenRa, without it appearing in any way forced. Emblematic, in this sense, is a very long track such as Story Of The Flood, which unwinds placidly with tones between ambient and jazz, between violins and winds that trace rarefied and at the same time touching harmonies, before the final five minutes when a post-hardcore with dramatic tones takes over the scene. Schoner Zerbit has more or less the same length but is divided into two parts, with the first one again more soft, but with peaks enlivened by the winds, and a singing of delicate tones, and the second one that is the natural continuation with a more decisive presence of the lead guitar that preludes to a new explosion, this time with even more harsh and dissonant traits. But every description leaves time to be found, since the variety of the musical offer and the instrumental mastery shown by Soldat Hans reveal themselves as something really involving and innovative, without necessarily having to resort to too much brainless passages to reach such a result. From those who love progressive music to the followers of post metal and doom, this is the range of potential users to whom a really splendid album like Es Taut is addressed.
2018 – Wolves And Vibrancy Records