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Boomkat Product Review:
Armchair Traveller is the collaborative moniker of musicians Hella von Ploetz (on glass harp), Silvia Ocougne (on a variety of prepared and traditional guitars), Werner Durand (on self-made wind instruments), and Sebastian Hiken (on percussion and cello). From this collection of instruments you have an inkling that the music will be somewhat ‘different’ and you’d be right – as the name suggests the band takes influence from ethnic music, and rather than reframe it as coffee-table drivel they attempt to let this music guide their compositions. The results are haunting and unusual, at times erratic and at times near-hypnotic as the band explore not only musical forms (ragas, drones and more) but the possibilities of their rag-tag collection of noise-making objects. A simple and sometimes apt comparison could be made to the Sun City Girls, but ‘Schöne Aussicht’ lacks the zaniness of the band’s US counterparts, instead diving headlong into the ethnic diversity which makes their adopted home city Berlin so inviting. ‘Schöne Aussicht’ is a trip well worth taking.