Man, this is a tough one. For you newer folks, this may be the kind of unique treat that makes you rue the vicissitudes of idol, the way that many of us from 2014-15 felt about the original BiS (only without the same level of makes-the-scene-happen influence, natch). Veterans may recall Hauptharmonie, though; veterans of Ye Olde Website may recall them as one of Maniac’s most heart-stopping idol projects, an almost impossible synergy of jazz and blues and big-band swing and ska and … well, and idol.
This is what the world misses without Hauptharmonie in it:
That was the lead from their second EP and second full album, the delicious Herz ueber Kopf, which felt at the time like a genuine breakthrough recording. Much as I had with Avandoned, I was a little bit reluctant to cover Hauptharmonie — celebrate personally, yes, but cover? — given that they were never really a rock unit per se. But listen to that song. Watch that video. Tell me that the attitude and approach weren’t there, even in limited quantities. That’s the kind of music that made old biddies back in the day declaim jazz as the devil’s music. It’s totally wonderful. Continue reading →
Good morning, lovely aces. You know what I did yesterday and last night? Put in a new floor in one of the rooms in Maniac Mansion. It was a lot of work, and I wasn’t very happy about it! I did, though, have a lot of time to daydream and do some mental checks back to old news, and actually go through all of my Twitter notifications to see what was up.
So, working back to front, here’s a whole set of Hauptharmonie that’ll get your pre-weekend started right:
Man, am I a lucky Maniac or what? Just a few minutes after waking up and surveying a Saturday landscape that doesn’t look all that appetizing, Hauptharmonie tweeted out the kind of track that, among idols at least, nobody else even tries to pull off:
This was a fun bit of news from yesterday that I wanted to save, and also because I had no idea what the original tweet was definitely saying until after the fact. But! It could have been predicted that Hauptharmonie would have a new release coming along at basically any moment, seeing as how they tend to put out something of substance at a rate that would even make Billie Idle blush, and it’d been … wow, many months since the release of the (very good) Herz ueber Kopf. So this, by itself, wasn’t tremendously shocking:
Back in 2015, when they were still pretty new and dressing like my mom did in the 70s, Hauptharmonie participated in this … idol battle? something at Tower Records under the auspices of the company’s own T-Palette label. As the video shows, Juno went on a roll in the arm wrestling.
Kaede from Negicco had like 10 years on her at the time and lost in seconds. Brutal
I’m not sure why they took down the video from the last time I got to post them, but here’s a great big chunk of the singularly, chaotically gorgeous Hauptharmonie from their tour final a couple of weeks ago:
That’s great. But it’s not the best thing to come from idol’s we-do-whatever-the-hell-we-feel-like-and-you’re-going-to-like-it darlings in the (very) new year. Continue reading →
I feel a little bit badly that the world’s coolest jazz & swing & whatever they want idols only managed to get a single spot into the Best of 2016 finals, but the truth is that they narrowly missed on the album, video and song finals, and I reckon that they’ll be all up in our business next year.
Perhaps sensing that we, their loyal fans, needed to be placated and/or bribed, they dropped this nice little chunk of live video on us, including the tasty breakout “Kidnapper Blues”:
Can you believe that it’s been two months since I last wrote a dedicated Hauptharmonie post? What the hell is wrong with me? It’s not like they aren’t doing anything — since dropping their (very good, if jazzy Britpop shoegazer disco idols are your thing) album, they’ve done TIF and a bunch of regular shows and then just had themselves a great set at JAM this past weekend:
The Peach Stage, for when you deserve roughly the third best!