You’d be forgiven for thinking KRANKk is from the UK. Their blend of Grimey basslines, Burial-inspired atmospherics, and future garage beats sound like they’ve been brewed up in a London lock-off. Really, though, they’re from Antwerp – and they’ve added a mad twist in that they play their two-step rhythms with live instrumentation.
KRANKk, crazy young dogs from the Antwerp urban scene. Keyboard player Aram Abgaryan, drummer Thomas Geysen and guitarist Willem Heylen study at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, where they found each other through their love for electronic music. The trio grew up with jungle, drum’n’bass, dubstep, and UK Garage. “That sound just appealed to us. It was funky, skippy, bouncy.” Debut single “Like That” is an instant hit. Nervous clicks and fragmentary synth waves drive to a bouncy apotheosis. Guest rappers Miss Angel and Blu Samu (see also Zwangere Guy ) provide a fresh, melodic setting. Moody successor “Crazy” with David Ngyah (see also Blackwave.) made it to Ultratop in last year’s Flemish hit parade. As students of the conservatory, the trio KRANKk is very much in touch with their instruments. Sounds – and the way they are produced – are very important. A simple push of a button to produce a digital sound is not enough. “Real” sounds and acoustic elements dominate their debut album ‘DARK’. Although that’s no dogma; disembodied vocal snippets and cold synths create a futuristic atmosphere. But they remain first and foremost musicians and only then producers. Producing a strong live set is their priority, with songs that will stand strong in any circumstances. KRANKk produces party music, which you can also take home with you. KRANKk makes futuristic metropolitan blues and stands for the sound of today. But that’s a sound that has a lot of respect for what preceded it: the classics of Burial of Kode9 + the spaceape shimmer through here. Fans of, say, Massive Attack, The Bug, or even “Haunted Dancehall” by Sabres or Paradise will also enjoy this.
Their group name refers to ‘insanity’ and indeed: KRANKk is too crazy!