What do you expect to read about a band you already got an idea of? Look at the picture above. You can’t help but immediately feel a certain vibe. Although you can’t really tell what the nature of your feeling is, it becomes very clear that it’s everything – and nothing at all. That vibe is what we refer to as THE GOLDEN FANG. “Whatever you do keep clear of the Fang” they used to say. But not anymore. This Golden Fang – what they call many things to many folks – a vertical package inhabited by an ancient energy. From every point of view it quickly becomes obvious that the word is neither the sound nor the feeling, just as the map is never the territory. Which transforms the attraction towards a thing as diversified as the Golden Fang into a natural act of pure instinct. The “what” and “how” become irrelevant as soon as you realize that it’s midnight, pitch dark, and you can’t remember wether they drained the pool or not. But hey, what does it matter? You bounce once, twice, then off the edge of the board and down in a blunt cannonball. One thing’s for sure: At some point SHAKE STEW will let loose. And if that happens you’d better be around.
“Bassist Lukas Kranzelbinder opens the buffet of new sounds, with the band Shake Stew. Style is a thing of the past – transformation and diversity are the new genre! Let the good vibrations flow! Shake Stew is an intergalactic road movie for your ears.”
“The Saalfelden festival wasted no time, opening with something remarkable on the main stage: bassist Lukas Kranzelbinder and his septet showed how elegantly composition and improvisation can be fused. Moods were subjected to gradual, cunning metamorphoses, soloists wreathed in thick, atmospheric, clouds of sound. The music evoked marching bands and free-tonal celebration, punctuated now and then by Eastern scalar excursions and bluesy innuendo. It made for a fairly magical opening set.”
“It was a concert deserving of celebration. The 28-year-old writes sublime pieces, using the unusual instrumentation – three horn players, two basses and two drummers – to excellent advantage. Cleverly placed breaks make way for inspired solos: Clemens Salesny’s and Johannes Schleiermacher’s saxophones sound great; Mario Rom’s trumpet shines. Judging by this example of the younger generation, Austrian jazz is in excellent health.”
“[…]Nor was there a single stylistically pure band in this year’s lineup. Shake Stew, the septet led by the young Austrian bass star Lukas Kranzelbinder (he also opened the Südtirol Festival in June, with another band) fulfilled the composition commission that traditionally serves as the festival’s opening act: with two bassists and two drummers, Kranzelbinder staged an intelligent, kaleidoscopic revue of musical tradition, framed by two wonderful Alpine gospel pieces.”
“Shake Stew is also visually imposing: flanked on either side by a double bass, the two drummers fired the band from their position at the back of the stage, inspiring the three-member horn section to let the melody flow. Impressively cool for a premiere, the septet managed a perfect dramatic arc.”
“Shamanic smears of sound, a fusillade of colossal, architectural beats, and snaking, energy-drunk horn lines – vast, cinematic music.”
“Kranzelbinder has proved to have a knack; he also has the know-how to manage capacious concert halls. Neither too densely nor too airily structured, Shake Stew drew from a balanced, often surprising mixture of composed and spontaneous music.