This years summer fete sees the welcome return another one of Soddenhams diaspora, Miriam Wentwhistle along with her musical partner Ralf Wibbenmayer. Miriam was born and raised in Soddenham, only leaving in 2010 to attend Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich to study music. It was there, in the music clubs of the trendy Haidhausen district that she met the talented and tousle-haired guitarist Ralf, playing rhythm guitar for what was left of the Kaffenberger Twins.
The pair teamed up for an open mike rendition of ‘Turning Japanese’ (The Vapors, 1980) and were extatically received by a usually more reserved crowd of Munich based hipsters. The rest, as they say, is history. Encouraged by this initial success, they put together a set list of songs they both loved and gave them them their own unique twist.
Since then, Miriam Und Ralf have performed in all the hippest venues in the most trendiest of cities all over Europe to widespread critical acclaim. The Polish radio station Luz FM described them as “an aural tour-de-force, spanning genres and breaking boundaries.”
I spoke to Miriam on the telephone a few days ago and she told me that she was very excited to be returning home to perform at the fete and hopes to gather some firm local support for their music. I’m sure that they will!
Meanwhile, Soddenhams favourite sons and the finest purveyors of ‘doom/folk’ this side of the Peddars Way are about to release a brand new record. Riding on the back of the runaway success of their first cassette (The Antimacassar Chronicles, 2014) the Smeckler twins and the erstwhile Malachai Twemlow have been crafting an new onslaught of sonic aggravation that has resulted in thirteen brand new tracks on the new record, simply titled ‘Turnpike.” Very few details have been released about the new album, and at the time of writing, no press copies have been made available for review. Shaun Smeckler did let slip that this will be released as a limited edition on heavy duty white vinyl and via download. The new material will be heard first at the Soddenham Summer Fete which is becoming quite famous for its musical events!
Opening the show are the ever ready ‘Thermostat Four’ who will be bringing their own brand of close harmony barbershop music that includes old standards and surprising modern reinterpretations. The dapper fellows promise not to disappoint this year! See you there!