Hypnotic Afrobeats and ecstatic sound eruptions with addiction factor!
Hardly any other band has turned the Central European jazz scene upside down in recent years like Shake Stew. While the ZEIT called them "Austria's jazz band of the hour" and the NDR elevated them to the status of a "cult band" early on, it has been clear since the awarding of the German Jazz Prize 2021 in the category "Band of the Year International" at the latest: something has started rolling here that has never existed in this form before. And it makes no effort to slow down!
From the very beginning, the formation brought to life by bassist and composer Lukas Kranzelbinder is surrounded by something mystical, which in a live concert ignites an immensely absorbing effect that few can escape: "The unspoken magic words are magic and energy - Shake Stew brings something cultic to current jazz, an enrichment! " writes the jury of the German Record Critics in their reasoning for the inclusion in the Best List 2020 and the British magazine MOJO gets even a touch more physical: "Able to blind you into a trance and make you dance to your knees, Shake Stew twists, blisters and burns like a fevered dream!" Despite their unusual line-up with two drums, two basses and three horns, the band always manages to catch their listeners of all ages in an incredibly direct way - whether in front of a standing audience in a packed club or in the sold-out Great Hall of the Vienna Konzerthaus. "You don't have to like jazz to love Shake Stew: Lukas Kranzelbinder's band is set on ecstasy from head to toe. Or loosely based on Nietzsche: this is not music, but dynamite!" (Wiener Zeitung)
Hypnotic Afrobeats and driving rhythms have characterised the band's sound from the beginning, but just when you think you have deciphered the magic formula of this musical stew, Shake Stew reveals the entire sonic range of its unique instrumentation: On the verge of absolute silence, sound formations emerge as if conjured from nowhere, bobbing along on trance-like repeated bass lines and finely tuned gong patterns, touching you at least as deeply in their tranquillity and fragility as the groove explosions that precede them. "Something emanates from this band that is new and special - and immensely attractive," wrote the ZEIT in its analysis, and no matter which side of Shake Stew ultimately carries you along more violently: Your body will keep swinging long after the last note!