Philm forges music that bursts forth with unexpected intensity and consequence. Through the band’s insistently sharp, cutting agitation, the music comes more into focus, reaching into the essence, the core, through a process that, with passionate urgency, opens up that core for all to hear. With Philm’s understanding that something only becomes exciting when it is no longer arbitrary, it shifts the boundaries of how we listen. The Berlin-based tenor saxophonist Philipp Gropper is underway with the NYC-based Austrian Elias Stemeseder on piano and synthesizer and the German working class heroes Oliver Steidle on drums and Robert Landfermann on double-bass. Philm use Gropper’s themes as a way of goading the jazz language to its limits, whilst still retaining the structure and style of the classic quartet line-up. All four band members are highly sensitised, lashed to a convoluted framework, but frequently escaping into the unpredictable dark corners of improvisation.
players: Philipp Gropper (sax), Robert Landfermann (bass), Oliver Steidle (dr) and Elias Stemeseder (p)
"The longer I play music, the more important it becomes and the more clearly I perceive what a band conveys, which message it sends out. This essence, which can be experienced through the transcendant quality of music, is what it is all about, and it is absolutely independent of style or set-up. Sole virtuosity, sole flights of intellect or the elevator-approach bore me - what I want is directness and aura.
I am deeply connected to tradition and constantly try to understand and carry forth its liveliness and fire - which could only develop in the context of its time ; and this secure the old masters their lasting impact."