Pingipung / Germany / 2020
When Yiğit Bülbül knocked on our door and put his debut album on the table, "Fever" took our hearts in a storm. The Turkish born, London based musician and producer knows how to craft his own contemporary avant-garde pop projections with a rich musical heritage shining through from the 1980s and 90s. His style erupts into silly, absurd moments of synth blurts, percussive extravaganza and psyched horns, it’s always colourful and trippy, but in a light way. It’s exactly what we want to release in a year of distress.
The album is framed by two contemplative tracks, which are reminiscent of Holger Czukay’s oeuvre. The saxophone in the opening track "The Heath" undulates like an introvert leading voice in a meditation. The long and meticulously crafted ambient outro "Txalaparta" features a spoken word sample by the Basque folk musician Txomin Artola from 1978. The four tracks at the heart of the album are beat driven, percussion-heavy, loaded with synths and random horn samples. "Alo?" sounds like Snakefinger tries to get on a Skype call with Serge Gainsbourg. "Cacti All Over My Head" could well be a Ween instrumental with long arching synth lines over a slowed down bossa nova beat.
"Fever" is a frivolous album which bursts with exalted charm and guest musicians. This is not another greetings-from-the-lockdown album, but with the obvious reference in the title it’s almost a tongue-in-cheek name about creative obsessions of our times.
It's the debut album by the multi-instrumentalist Y Bülbül who has learned his trade working with various interesting artists and bands in London in the past 10 years. He is also a passionate crate digger and DJ. His own radio show is unerringly titled "Bülbül's Gemüsement Park", which airs on Netil Radio, a community broadcasting station in Hackney.
Bonus fact, Bülbül is the Turkish name for a brown-eared passerine bird, one that's into singing.