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Mario Batkovic is on the rise. The Bosnian accordionist manages to use his instrument in such a way that the result is both forward-thinking and resonates with young people. Like Philip Glass/Steve Reich he explores the limits of the accordion to its fullest, which in his case results in a mesmerizingly beautiful repetitive sound. Batkovic has had plenty of successful festival performances so far, including Valkhof Festival and Le Guess Who.
In March a self-titled album came out that was praised by leading magazines like Pitchfork and Rolling Stone. The album itself is absolutely fantastic, both refreshing and convincing. Batkovic is both able to mimic the thunderous bombast of the world’s biggest church organ with his instrument, and to play it in such an intimate way that it’s like he is trying to seduce his audience on a personal level. All of this is without the help of loop stations or other digital trickery: his bizarrely skilled technique and intuitive playing are enough.
Highly recommended to fans of acts like Hauschka and Nils Frahm, but also to those who love postrock like Godspeed! You Black Emperor.