Blurb: Hailing from Gent, Belgium, the kaleidoscopic disco band Rheinzand is a collaborative project between multi-instrumentalist and producer Reinhard Vanbergen, Charlotte Caluwaerts and Mo Disko of renowned duo The Glimmers; accompanied live by Stéphane Misseghers (dEUS) on drums and Bruno Coussée (MannGold) on bass. Their electrifying new album ‘Atlantis Atlantis’ has just been released by the Danish label Music For Dreams. DMCWORLD dives in…
Rheinzand - Love Games (Official Video) - s0541
Hello, thanks for speaking with DMC today. For anyone not familiar with you, please introduce yourselves and what you do.
We are Rheinzand, a band from Ghent, Belgium. Reinhard Vanbergen, multi-instrumentalist and producer, Mo Disko DJ and music visionary, Charlotte Caluwaerts singer and writer. Live we are accompanied on stage by Stéphane Misseghers on drums and Bruno Coussée on bass. We’ve been making music for approximately eight years now. First, we made a track every six months and when we had eight of them, we decided to try them out live. That’s when we really became a band. We then continued to make new tracks until we had a bunch to choose from. A selection made it to our debut album that was released in March 2020, the very first day of lockdown.
How would you describe your music? What are the elements that you feel make it distinctive?
Retro futuristic disco kind of describes it. This record is made up of songbased tracks always aimed for the dance floor. There is a certain nostalgia towards late seventies-early eighties sounds, but always with a modern touch.
Please talk us through your new album Atlantis Atlantis? What inspired you to create the album?
We are lucky enough to start from a musical universe, created by Mo, our DJ. He selected some 30 tracks that we used as a kind of mood board for sound. The whole album was written in a month’s time, during lockdown. It did influence some of the tracks, you can definitely hear some longing for nightlife in tracks like Better and La Nuit and the title track Atlantis. The title track Atlantis Atlantis was born on a vacation in Ibiza, about two years ago. We rented a boat and tried to go to ‘Atlantis’, which is a flooded quarry that has become mythical. It’s very hard to reach over land so we tried over water. Unfortunately the water was full of medusa’s, so we still haven’t been there. It stays the eternal promise. This inspired us to make the track, which tells the story of someone who is looking to find a club that is named Atlantis, but doesn’t seem to find a way. We’ll Be Alright was born out of a programming mistake by Reinhard. The chords really don’t make any sense, but they sound great so we decided to keep them. It’s cool when mistakes or unforeseen things add to the music. Elefantasi is an ode to our label Music For Dreams and to Eisbär, a track we love, on the other hand. The original version was written in Danish, we kept it quiet and sent it as a surprise to them. Facciamo L’amore is inspired by pictures that our drummer and his girlfriend Fleur Boonman, who is a director and a photographer, took in a grand Fellini-like hotel in Italy. They were so enthusiastic about it that it inspired Charlotte, the track literally fell into her lap one day. It was written in 10 minutes, a moment of magic.
Your recent single Elefantasi features versions in six different languages. Are you fluent in all or was it hard to learn each translation?
Yes, I (Charlotte) speak all of them. I have a deep love for languages. To me, they are a golden key to really communicate with people from other countries. Also, nobody speaks Dutch, so as a Belgian you have to learn other languages. The first version of Elefantasi was the Danish version. It was an ode to our Danish label Music For Dreams. They asked to do an English version, but that one was a bit harder to do. The Spanish one came more easily, so it seemed like a cool idea to just do a bunch of languages so everyone can pick their favourite one.
If money was no object, what instrument/item of studio equipment would you buy?
A 24 track tape machine and 24 inline desk, to be able to record the old way.
What have been the biggest influences in your music career so far?
As we all have very different backgrounds and ages, we have very different influences. Mo coming from a DJ background has a huge catalogue, while Charlotte was influenced by the big singers like Whitney Houston and Dolly Parton. Reinhard studied first classical violin and then jazz violin at the conservatory, so his influences go from Bella Bartok to Jean Luc Ponti to Stephane Grapelli.
What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
When you’re making music and a line/melody feels forced or unnatural, just let it go and go for something that feels easy. Always better.
What are three new tracks/albums you’d recommend someone to listen to?
Junaco – Blue Room
Reinhard Vanbergen – They do not Care (out April 14th)