Zita Swoon is a cosmopolitan group of Antwerp internationalists. They each carry their own baggage and share it with the other members of the band. They also involve other artists from other disciplines: choreographers, dancers and theatre people. Together they form a new lab for scene productions of hybrid performances. In that same lab new songs are born.
“I feel the need to zoom into various aspects of our work: experimentation, melody-harmony, movement and rhythm. With Zita Swoon Group I want to bring music that is in perfect balance with itself. Choosing the right instruments and amplifiers is more important. It needs to resonate in the concert hall as well. “says Stef Kamil Carlens about his latest lab.
Those who have followed the band’s evolution during the past fifteen year know that each new step by these ambitious musicians has been an enriching, broadening and deepening of their own material. The rewriting of the band’s legacy too. And it’s a beautiful thing to see these artists continually reinvent themselves” Jerry Aerts director deSingel international art campus Antwerp BE.
“Some people cast a wider and wider net as they get older, others turn the mind’s eye inward. Soul searcher and singer-songwriter Stef Kamil Carlens has made such a journey. Musically of course, going from being a founding member of rock band dEUS in the nineties, to injecting his sense for musical experimentation into Zita Swoon, to making the simplest of arrangements: one man, one guitar. And yet, he strives for the same perfection in that one instrument and one voice in all his projects. He’s a painter, a sculptor and is known for his outspoken environmental and global awareness, getting involve in projects like “Friends Of The Earth” Tedx Flanders
“Stef Kamil Carlens first became known as the bass guitarist, singer and fellow songwriter of Belgian band dEUS. It was not long before he went his own way as a singer-songwriter, accompanied by his band, Moondog Jr., who were renamed Zita Swoon after their first record. In 1996, Carlens left dEUS so he could concentrate on Zita Swoon and other projects, such as writing scores for films and theatre productions, creating dance/theatre/music performances, and making sculptures, installations, drawings and paintings.” Janus
“I’m a fairly optimistic person. But I’m ‘an optimist with a heavy heart’. I just have a clear vision of the world. When you look around and really see what’s happening, then you can’t be fully optimistic.” De Standaard
“Carlens’ songs are semi-surreal exercises in emotional excavation, never afraid to veer off at lyrical tangents, though always staying within the unusual boundaries. Benelux boy Carlens takes more poetic chances with a foreign language than most English bands: the result is music which gains, rather than diminishes; in mystery the more one hears it” The Independent