Inside Amplifest: Jozef van Wissem

In Portuguese it’s usual to say something like “shut the fuck up, someone’s going to sing fado,” although we don’t actually curse (not literally, at least). But there should be someone who’s not going to the the whole fado stuff who still deserves the righteous “shush” – and if we can have a word on this, we’d say it is Jozef van Wissem.

The way he plays his lute is hauntingly beautiful and amazingly without age. It can be baroque, it can be avant-garde, it can be drone and it can be folk. But there’s something it can’t be: tasteless or plain bad. And, believe me, we listened to a lot of van Wissem’s records lately, so we speak from experience. And we’ll do it again after the Dutch composer make us gaze infinity during his performance in Porto’s Sé, a historic church.

While we’re waiting for Amplifest to come, we had a quick chat with Jozef van Wissem:

What do you expect of the Amplifest audience?

Violent silence.

We like surprises, but what can we expect from your show?

A low mass.

What band do you really want to see at Amplifest?

White hills.

If you had to pick a band or a musician of this Amplifest edition to play with who would it be?

White hills, they are in a movie i am doing the soundtrack for.

What records have you been listening lately?

Arvo Part, Zola Jesus, Henning Christiaansen.

Enough about music, Amplifest is also about other arts. What have books have you been reading and what movies have you been watching lately that you want to recommend?

Books, swedenborg, meister eckhart, mechtild of magdenburg; films: melancholia, shame.

Talk about mysterious. Should have add that to my list of adjectives.