Photography by Seth Olenick
Today, Marco Benevento shares “Do You Want Some Magic,” the fourth single from his upcoming album, simply titled, Benevento, due June 10 on Royal Potato Family. The hypnotic, five minute-plus krautrock homage is Benevento’s reimagination of musical heroes like Can and Neu! It features Benevento—revered as a virtuosic, genre-defying, experimental keyboardist—playing all of the parts.
“I love those ten minute-plus songs by Can and Neu! where the entire track is basically the drum groove and the repetitious bass pattern. The recreation of this approach has practically become its own genre and I’ve always wanted to try it,” says Benevento. “The demo for was made on a plane to London back in 2016 and for a long time it was something I wanted to get back to and finish. I finally had time to re-record it at my studio during the pandemic. It felt complete when I added the Japanese translation of ‘do you want some magic?’ to the mix.”
In contrast to Let It Slide, Benevento’s minimalistic 2019 full-length collaboration with producer Leon Michels, his latest 11-song studio effort is heavily saturated and exploratory, built from countless layers of keyboards, bounced to four-track tape. Deeply indebted to the West African psychedelia of artists such as Francis Bebey, Kiki Gyan and William Onyeabor, the songs are rhythmic and repetitive, built into thick mosaics of sound.
Its title, Benevento, nods to Paul McCartney’s first solo album and like Macca’s eponymous release, it’s a similarly homegrown affair where song sketches and sunrise jams share space with more constructed tracks. Recording was conducted at Benevento’s home studio amidst stacks of gear in varying states of repair, all fodder for inspiration during long quarantine-dictated solo jam sessions. In this environment, Benevento unlocked his archives, mining for unfinished song ideas, and surrendered to the machines, coaxing beats and melodies from both go-to favorites and gear that had long been collecting dust.
“It was wall-to-wall keyboards, mics, amps, drums, the place was about to explode,” Benevento laughs. “Looking back, my studio was a good place to be trapped while the world was shutdown. I was surrounded by tape machines and gear. The album became a psychedelic window into my studio and my brain, a document of a crazy dude losing his mind in the woods and maybe regaining it.”
Along with his upcoming album release, this summer Benevento presents his own festival, Follow The Arrow, at Arrowood Farms in the Hudson Valley on Saturday, June 18 featuring Antibalas, The Slip and El Michels Affair among others plus special guests like Stuart Bogie, Scott Metzger and Sam Evian among others.
Marco Benevento – Benevento
1. Like Me
2. Marco & Mimo
3. At The End Or The Beginning
4. We Were Here
5. Winter Rose
7. The Warm Up
8. Do You Want Some Magic
9. Mountain Cougars
10. Ballad Of A Broken Wing
11. Is This A Dream
Benevento is out June 10 on Limited Edition Bubblegum Pink 180-Gram Vinyl,
Classic Black 180-Gram Vinyl and Digital formats from Royal Potato Family.
Pre-order available HERE
6/18 – Accord, NY – Follow The Arrow
6/21 – Rochester, NY – Abilene
6/22 – Rochester, NY – Abilene (Sold Out)
6/23 – Pittsburgh, PA – Thunderbird
6/24 – Cleveland, OH – Beachland Ballroom
6/25 – Rothbury, MI – Electric Forest Festival
7/1 – Scranton, PA – Peach Music Festival
7/3 – Quincy, CA – High Sierra Music Festival
9/3 – Portland, ME – Ghostland Festival
Tickets Available HERE