There was a discussion recently on the Facebook page for the Contemporary A Cappella Society wherein Warren Bloom (of 5th Judge and Invisible Men) dropped a “grenade” suggesting that a cappella music is headed nowhere, despite Pitch Perfect and ICCA success, unless and until there are more groups writing and performing original music. It seemed clear to me that his goal was to spur discussion as to the need for more original music (a discussion I’d be happy to see and promote), but many took it that he was assaulting the value of or place for any cover music in the a cappella realm. Regardless of your opinion on these topics, one of the comments following Bloom’s post discussed the abundance of original vocal music in Germany, and I started listening to my Maybebop CD and planning for AcaVids. It’s been awhile since we covered some global music, and I’m happy to present this week’s AcaVids in tribute to the many talented groups of Germany, though I did not look specifically for original tunes. Since I only present a few videos in this segment, my apologies to Amarcord, Vocaldente, and a bunch of other terrific groups in Germany.
First up, Maybebop. I really love the sound, style, and intelligence this quartet puts into their music. They write some of the best pop hooks in modern a cappella. Period. Here’s the slightly racy video from their song “Kuscheln, Sex und Händchenhalten,” which apparently translates roughly to “Cuddling, sex, and holding hands.” Sweet, catchy, and mellow.
Wise Guys are a male quintet who released a 2-part album album last year, half a cappella and half instrumental. Here’s the video for one of the songs from the a cappella portion, “Lauter.”
SLIXS, the jazzy sextet formerly known as Stouxingers, are smooth and effortless here.
JuiceBox are a mixed sextet, seen here performing at a festival in 2009.
We welcome you to share more German groups or videos in the comments section below.