(image from: https://karlkave.bandcamp.com)
When the U.S. first imposed the shutdowns for the pandemic, it was obviously a worrisome time. Accidentally reflecting that chaos I got really into Synth Rock/Punk, Darkwave and other similar styles of music primarily from Central/Eastern Europe. One of the musicians I came across at this time was Carlo Rainolter. His projects Karl Kave and Carlo Onda are dark, artistic and Existential in their own ways.
Rainolter’s primary career is social work, specifically working with those who have cognitive disabilities, but enjoys making music in his free time. Carlo Onda was the result of a manic episode after recovering from a several month long depressive episode, where he says “all that energy had to go somewhere”, so he put all of it into making music. His first full album release was “geister” in July of 2019, and used primarily digital versions of classic synths for the music. This project is the more focused of the two, he describes its energy as “driven, punkish and trash” whereas his other project Karl Kave is more of a place to “dump” his work that’s drifted into other styles. Carlo Onda also tends to be more “about the freedom of cheap programs, freeware digital instruments and effects” whereas Karl Kave primarily uses hardware Instruments. He has the incredible ability to record large amounts of music in short periods of time, sometimes upwards of 20 songs a month.
One release he’s particularly proud of from this year is his collaborative album with friend and musician Dorian. “Untergang und Finsternis” was released via Detriti Records in May of this year. Detriti is a record label based in Berlin run by “an uncomplicated italian guy with a specific musical taste.” Durian describes the album as “claustrophobic”, which I thought was incredibly interesting, Rainolter expands on that by describing it as “very narrow and dense”. Since that release in May, he has released two albums and two singles through his Karl Kave moniker. He hints that there is at least one LP being mastered for vinyl release as of now, but also has released music on cassette.
Rainolter is also a very fun follow on Instagram. I don't speak German, and most of his stories are in German, but in addition to his photos of beautiful Switzerland he posts a lot of cervelat, a sausage stuffed with potato salad. That's actually how our first conversation began, me asking what the hell that was. Anyways, be sure to check out Karl Kave and Carlo Onda for some sythy, post-punk magic and endless releases!