Donauwellenreiter (Austria/Italy)

Sparkling modernity between chamber orchestra and ambient jazz band

Donauwellenreiter are one of the most exciting and innovative projects of the contemporary scene in Vienna. They play a fascinating distinct sound of highly poetic charisma and have gained recognition at home as well as abroad for both their outstanding live concerts as well as recordings.

In 2016 they presented their critically acclaimed third album EUPHORIA, an impressive and highly inspiring new piece of work. The mix of the musical influences and experiences of the individual ensemble members – all of whom also compose and contribute their various style origins such as folklore, pop, jazz, classical, chamber music, world music and more – merges into a mesmerizing, sensually and intellectually stimulating whole. As meticulous as it may be to articulate all the nuances of the unique Donauwellenreiter sound and style – the beauty and the clarity of this music at certain moments will leave you speechless.

Donauwellenreiter succeed in creating equally approachable and demanding modern art music, which also fascinates and inspires listeners who avoid compulsive genre conventions and appreciate quality and artistic substance. Thus, the quatuor find their attentive audiences in Germany, Switzerland, Serbia, Portugal or Canada as well as at home in Vienna, the mature urban openness of the city being undoubtedly a basic element and a precondition for the art of this ensemble.

In October 2017 they released their latest album with reinterpretations of the songs of Italian cantautore Gianmaria Testa, who passed away in 2015.


Line up

Thomas Castaneda – piano, keyboard
Maria Craffonara – voice, violin, percussion
Lukas Lauermann – cello
Jörg Mikula – drums


Discography

2017 Donauwellenreiter Play Gianmaria Testa (Hoanzl)
2016 Euphoria (Laloki Music/Hoanzl)
2014 Messei (Intuition Records)
2012 Annäherung (4tm/Hoanzl)


Awards

2013 Special Jury Prize, International Music Festival Castelfiardo, 2013, IT
2014 Newcomer of the Month, Jazzzeitung 2014, DE
2014 Nomination for Preis der deutschan Schallplattenkritik, Longlist 3/2014, DE
2014 The New Austrian Sound Of Music  2014/15, AT


Press

“They approach Testa’s oeuvre full of tenderness and respect; at moments Craffonara’s voice  transforms its beauty into something even more beautiful.”
Falter, AT, 2017

Chamber music, minimalism, but also powerful yet acustically filled pop structures merge into an ensemble sound that is rounded off by the vocal contributions of violinist Maria Craffonara (in Ladin!).”
Jazzthetik, DE, 2016

“Pulsating between innocence and theatricality, simplicity and opulence, effortless elegance and classical moments, these four musicians continue to follow their path as cosmopolitan ambassadors of sophisticated listening experiences.”
In.Musik.De, DE, 2016

“Not rock, not folk, not jazz. Instead, music of a new wave.”
Folker, DE, 2017

“… the perfect symbiosis of semi-classical, world music, jazz, and rock …”
Schallmagazin, DE, 2017

„The music of Donauwellenreiter has a centripetal force driving directly for the realm of resonance which moves our soul beyond any cultural-language ties, then, acquires much more higher dimension than any exquisite pattern of notes or rhythms can reach…“
Jazztokyo, JP, Kayo Fushiya, 2016

“A sparkling mix of chamber orchestra and ambient jazz band.”
Die Presse, AT, 2014

Wow (…) if you want something you’ll enjoy so much, that’s gleefully out of the ordinary, that’ll drive you nuts, this is what you want to be hearing. Well done”
Midwest Record, USA, 2014

“Above all, the force of strong melodies – it is unforgettable if you listened to it once”
Jazztokyo, JP, 2014

“Thomas Castaneda has a wonderful feeling for writing melodic and catchy songs”
Musicframes, NL, 2014