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Lente Kabinet and Kornuit proudly present Podiumdieren​, a new series putting a spotlight on musicians by diving into their preparations, work processes, routines and live performance. Kicking the series off are one-man-band Karel and Maastricht's duo YĪN YĪN.

Podiumdieren: Karel

The first video captures upcoming Amsterdam-based talent and one-man-band Karel, who has been turning heads among audiences and critics since his debut EP ​Life​ (released on Job Jobse’s label ​De Vlieger​). It is safe to say that the likeable Karel, who has a fully packed schedule in The Netherlands this summer, has a promising future ahead of him.

Karel (27) recently moved from his hometown Groningen to Amsterdam, where his solo career has been making waves ever since. With a background as a drummer in several bands, he started to feel the urge to step onto the stage solo and make his own songs at one point. That all came together in the Dutch capital, where some of his peers (among Robert Lalkens, head of programming at Subbacultcha, and Red Light Radio’s Hugo van Heijningen) took him under their wings. Not much later, Karel got the chance to release his debut record on the label of well-known Dutch DJ Job Jobse. After a successful album release at Garage Noord afterwards, gigs at festivals and clubs started piling in, including one at Lente Kabinet Festival in the last weekend of May.

Karel’s music is uplifting and nostalgic (“I think I’d call my music simple synth-pop”), and Karel’s known for his energetic live performances where he jumps across the stage with endless enthusiasm. “There’s always this kind of nervosity on stage, and I convert those nerves into being very active. That’s also why I always jump around so much.” In the video, Karel shares his personal story about being in bands and what’s it like to perform solo now. “Suddenly you no longer have to agree with other people on certain stuff. I could, for example, just skip songs last minute - nobody would notice it anyway”. Furthermore, it shines light on Karel’s creative process (“I have a short attention span, so everything must be done within a day”) and how he prepares himself for a live performance. In short, the video reflects why Karel is a top-notch musician in the making and that we’re, without doubt, going to hear more from him in the future.

Podiumdieren: YĪN YĪN

This second video highlights the Dutch duo, existing of Kees Berkers and Yves Lennertz, who released their first hit EP ‘Dion Ysiusk’ on 7” inch label Bongo Joe, with a second one on its way later on this year.

Kees Berkers and Yves Lennertz are not only band members; they also live right next to each other. The two have been making music together for quite some time now, but they’ve been in many different bands in the past. It’s exactly that kind of experience that shines through their music, which is educated and fresh. Within the band, Kees plays the drums and percussions, whilst Yves focuses on the guitar. Music-wise, Yīn Yīn is influenced by a lot of Asian and Eastern sounds. “There’s a lot of Eastern/Asian inspiration in our music actually: Pakistani influences, Japanese stuff… it’s hard to differentiate.”

The video illustrates their work ethics (“I always feel the urge to make music, but it’s simply not always possible”) and shows how performing can be a way of zoning out. “We always try to find a balance between between our concentration, listening to the other musicians and catching the vibe of the crowd. It is a really weird zone where you find yourself in sometimes, because I can kind of get lost in this whilst drumming. I sometimes just ‘wake up’ at a certain point during a performance and I realize I’ve actually been in this ‘zen-state’ for quite a while.” All together, it shortly captures how two musicians from Maastricht have managed to make something unique of their own.