LYENN and Bert Dockx solo
With Transit, his new solo album, the indefatigable Bert Dockx has added a compelling new facet to his ever-expanding, deeply personal musical universe.
While in the past decade Bert’s main projects – Flying Horseman and Dans Dans – have grown into two of the most eminent and devotedly followed bands in Belgium, he has always kept playing solo-shows on the side. Shows at which, along with his own compositions, he has occasionally offered adventurous interpretations of a variety of iconic songs. Transit contains the most remarkable of these interpretations in a naked and raw, yet subtly hallucinogenic production by Dockx’ faithful accomplice Koen Gisen. The album was recorded live (and captured on camera by Philippe Werkers) in Gisen’s intimate studio in Ghent, Belgium.
As we've come to expect from this always original musician, these are anything but servile ‘covers’. In often unexpected ways, Dockx gives a voice to the deep connection he feels with this music. He pays tribute to the original song by radically making it his own. With his intuitive, genre-defying approach, Dockx exposes unknown layers and emotions in often overfamiliar songs (Albatross by Fleetwood Mac, I’m On Fire by Bruce Springsteen, I Shall Be Released by Bob Dylan), offering us glimpses beneath the surface of his own soul in the process.
Anyone who has seen Bert Dockx perform with Flying Horseman or Dans Dans, will know how riveting and atmospheric his performances can be. Impassioned vocals, intense presence, fierce and inspired guitar playing, room for improvisation, the ecstatic heat of the moment.
No matter how much we like to see Lyenn play bass with Mark Lanegan or lead Dans Dans, it was about time he let us in again on the songs that have been lurking inside him all these years. And finally we can join Adrift and follow his flow. The album was recorded completely live in Iceland, again with Lyenn’s faithful companion Shazaad Ismaily.
It contains some of the timid singer-songwriter, a multilingual Jeff Buckley on piano or Nick Drake on bouzouki. Miniature landscapes loom out of the fog, reminiscent of late Talk Talk or Mark Hollis' solo work.
His pop music is refined like David Sylvian's, even if it is just two notes sometimes. ‘Give In' could be an idea of Radiohead – but the moment Lyenn sees this through, he cuts it off. ‘Staggering Heights' is exactly what the title says, dizzying. And the 8 conjuring minutes of 'Hissing Fire' should have been 80, a mantra. Adrift comes straight out of the life of Fred Lyenn Jacques. He is a searcher, never and always sure of himself. A basso continuo with a falsetto. He improvises a path where there is none. Picking up instruments along the way and following his intuition. He surrenders himself to the music and passes it on to us, with a lot of patience and fortune in the form of a record. Like Adrift, and nothing else.
- "When Lyenn makes an album, he goes with the flow: which, according to him, results in the most beautiful and exciting songs. 'Adrift' proves his point." ****HUMO
- "Already one of the greatest albums of the year." ENOLA on 'Adrift'
- 4 Stars + Album of the week in ****FOCUS KNACK
- "Enchantingly beautiful" OOR on Lyenn's new album
- “A masterful ode to the ode.” ****FOCUS KNACK
- “…opening a new world.” ENOLA
- “A troubadour of the night.” ****HUMO
- “Pure Magic” OOR
- “Through blood en bone…” GONZO