Exposé Online banner

Amstrong — Sprinkler
(Clearspot EFA CD 05413 P, 1999, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2001-03-01

Sprinkler Cover art

Amstrong hail from Copenhagen, and are often compared to massive Attack and Portishead, but I don’t hear much of that. Their sound is a strange mixture of very artificial and organic, with samples of guitar distortion forming the basis for several songs, and rhythm provided by looped drums, often heavily distorted. Techno-ish synthesizers make occasional appearances, but given the un-techno setting, they become just another part of the arranged noise. I suppose describing the music as “arranged noise” would give the impression that the sound is harsh or abrasive, but Amstrong is actually rather pleasant to listen to much of the time (though I admit Burt Bacharach fans would probably disagree). A singer named Marie Louise provides some melody and structure otherwise lacking, with a voice similar to Lou Rhodes of Lamb, though not quite as jazzy or affected. Moods range from lazy to fairly intense, and never sink into any semblance of disco – four-on-the-floor dance grooves are conspicuously absent. I even hear a hint of psychedelia, courtesy of a bit of wah-wah and some echoed vocals, but maybe I’m taking that too far. This band is truly unique and it’s very difficult to put into words any idea what the net effect of the sound is.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 21, 1999 releases

Related artist(s): Amstrong

Latest news

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Stella Vander - Le Coeur Allant Vers – Stella Zelcer established herself as an artist with an uncompromising independent streak long before the close of the 60s, when she was known simply as “Stella.” Despite having a keen...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues