RR: Less than three seconds into the journey, the world-famous Austrian physicist Erwin Schrödinger starts speaking. His words about “partial truth-value” fade away over a repetitive keyboard riff and a bouncy drumbeat, creating atmosphere. Thirty-six minutes later, the journey is over, it’s flown by, and then Erwin Schrödinger appears again. His 1952 talk is followed by a question: “What’s this quantum mechanics all about, then?” Good question!
His 1935 quantum mechanics experiment is not easy to explain. Let’s leave it at this: it was a thought experiment about a cat, a box, a Geiger counter, a hammer and a bottle of hydrocyanic acid. The result can either be logical or preposterous. It’s the starting point for the Bernese duo “Schrödingers Katze” – keyboardist Simon Althaus and drummer Manuel Pasquinelli, two musicians who work with musical fragments, short sequences that progress uniformly before slowing changing; grooves meander, dovetail, slide over each other. Some of it is reminiscent of early 1970s prog rock, but without the baroque pomp. What’s left is moments of rhythmic complexity, but also points of indefinable beauty. The musicians call these fragments “positions” and they form the basis of this dense, atmospheric music. It sparks images in the listener’s mind, a frantic sequence of still images and slowly emerging film scenes, trance-like music that sounds both composed and improvised – like the ocean, its steady waves both eternally the same and yet ever-changing. The debut album, “Superposition”, from “Schrödingers Katze”, makes for rewarding, and in some places, compelling listening.