(Morpheus Records)


Over in Switzerland, the band known as Akku Quintet are busy redefining the course of progressive jazz fusion music. With the band’s second CD, entitled Molecules, Akku has recorded a kind of masterpiece of 21st century instrumental jazz-rock music. The band’s drummer Manuel Pasquinelli continues making waves with the Swiss fusion band Sonar and, with Akku he assumes a unique role of guiding yet another band to international acclaim. Assisting Manuel are a group of excellent musicians, including guitarist Markus Ischer. The sound is not unlike Sonar, yet there’s also a kind of free form, blissful chill-out groove sound similar to late period Gong, when yet another drummer, Pierre Moerlin, led that band. That percussive, highly rhythmic, super charged energy, that Moerlin brought to Gong, is also in abundance, in its own unique way, on Akku’s 2015 Molecules CD. Not only does Pasquinelli excel behind the kit, but, as the CD proves, he’s also an excellent composer and band leader. On their 2015 CD, Molecules, Manuel Pasquinelli and company demonstrates the power and the glory of artistically composed and performed instrumental jazz-rock fusion. www.facebook.com / www.AkkuQuintet.com

mwe3.com speaks to
Manuel Pasquinelli about AKKU

: Tell us how the Akku album Molecules took shape.

Manuel Pasquinelli: After playing some concerts in the beginning of 2014 with new band member Andi Schnellmann, it felt like a good moment to do a new record. The energy in the band was good, and it was time for a next step after our first album Stages Of Sleep. The album Molecules was developed and emerged in a short, but intense time. In August 2014 we started rehearsing, and after a few tryout gigs and a three-day studio session end of September, the record was done.

Despite the tight planning, the rehearsing, recording and also the mixing process felt very relaxed and natural. Not every musical detail was fixed when we started recording. Especially concerning sounds, and how to get from one section to the next. We were well prepared, but we hadn't played the songs to death. Although the compositions are very structured, we didn't only try to reproduce something we rehearsed, but we rather had to create a mood and suspense out of the moment. That was very inspiring and a creative process. The songs were written, but only in the studio did they become, what they are now. At the moment we are working on new material, which we expect to record in the end of 2016.

mwe3: How would you compare your work in Akku with your work in the band Sonar?

Manuel Pasquinelli: It’s difficult for me to compare Akku Quintet and Sonar. Common things are, that in both bands, virtuosity is not the highest priority, and the focus is on rhythmical and repetitive elements. So the two bands could be categorized in a similar genre. Also mood and energy are very important in both bands. Despite that, Akku Quintet and Sonar are two very different bands. The approach, the compositional structures, the musical background of the members and of course the instrumentation are different.


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