18 March 2010

The Black Atlantic

The Black Atlantic is the Groningen (The Netherlands) based acoustic pop band formed around singer and songwriter Geert van der Velde, former frontman for American metalcore group Shai Hulud. The Black Atlantic released their debut album “Reverence for Fallen Trees” digitally for free (worldwide) as part of the In A Cabin With international recording series on August 21st, 2009. It has already been downloaded over 50.000 times since then. 

In February, 2008, The Black Atlantic contacted the international recording project “In a Cabin With” (IACW) about a possible recording session. IACW were immediately enthusiastic and plans for a late 2008 recording, to take place in a log cabin, were made. The cabin, owned by van der Velde’s in-laws is located in the small town of Saranac Lake, in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains of Upstate New York. For this recording, drummer Marcel Wolthof was re-enlisted alongside singer-songwriter Kim Janssen on various instruments. Janssen co-wrote some of the songs for the recording and has permanently settled in and joined the band. The title of the album “Reverence for Fallen Trees” is a metaphor for “honour the dead”, referring to van der Velde’s grandparents, 3 of whom passed away recently in the past year. The album deals with such topics as ‘remembrance’ , ‘grief’, ‘family’, ‘love’, ‘disenchantment’ and ‘overcoming’, eloquently worded and brought to life in natural methaphors and direct references to this period in his family history. Musically the new songs showcase a much wider variety of instrumentation and willingness to experiment with sounds and soundscapes, and the use of multi-layered vocal harmonies; inspired by such acts as Bon Iver, Fleet Foxes and the Beach Boys. Rhytmically the group has chosen for a much more minimal, percussive approach touring with only a snare drum, floor tom and cymbal. 

The band has maintained a steady diet of touring, playing shows, in a revolving line-up up, until April 2009, opening for Nada Surf (usa), Patrick Watson (ca) and touring the US East Coast and Midwest multiple times, once with Tim Williams (usa) and later with friends The Antlers (usa). In Europe the band has toured with Saturday Looks Good to Me (usa) and most recently with Windmill (uk). 

03.18.10 USA - Austin, TX @ Soho Lounge - SXSW
03.19.10 USA - Austin, TX @ SXSW – Radisson Hotel’s 2nd Play Stage 7pm-7:45pm
03.20.10 USA – Austin, TX @ SXSW – The Embassy Hotel 7pm
03.21.10 USA - Austin, TX @ SXSW
03.24.10 USA - St. Louis, MO @ Lemp Art Center w/ Ethan Heller
03.27.10 US - Chicago, IL @ The Empty Bottle w/ The Cave Singers
03.26.10 USA - Toledo, OH @ Ottawa Tavern w/ Sangsara
04.04.10 USA - New York, NY @ Piano's

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