After releasing his debut album “Better Way,” on 9 January 2021 (via City Slang), Casper Clausen (Efterklang), needed a special place to perform this new material. Since traditional performances weren’t happening at the beginning of 2021, Clausen worked with Ancienne Belgique’s creative director, Kurt Overbergh, on organising a unique experience (with support from Liveurope). The Brussels venue availed its crew and resources for one week so Clausen could produce the perfect setting.
As a result, a one-night livestream with 25 audience members was created in April. With such a limited amount of people in attendance, Clausen was able to personally interact with everyone. Each participant prepared a few things for the show, including a favourite smell, a sweet and salty drink/something to eat, and a pen and paper. These items were virtually discussed with Clausen over Zoom – facilitating a human connection. To get a sense of how Clausen utilised the space, Ancienne Belgique’s photographer, Michelle Geerardyn captured photos – one of which is found below.
“It’s a record about finding a better way, loving stronger, falling harder” he says. “It’s about being far away, and it’s about being myself, how I make music by myself. It’s my first album, though I’ve been in bands ever since I started making music in my teens. Most of the songs on this record were written in a similar way; I’d go to my studio everyday, turn on some machines and find some sounds that I like and let my mind drift away. I would always leave one song behind every day I went to the studio.”-Clausen commenting on the creation of “Better Way,” official press release from City Slang.
The album has ties to Lisbon and Berlin, and is truly a transcendental experience. With the Brussels performance as part of the journey for “Better Way,” it’s almost like a homecoming for Clausen. Ancienne Belgique’s relationship with Efterklang spans over 10 years, including their Efterkids Opera. In addition, the April livestream concept was conceived while Clausen was strolling in the Belgian forest with his friend Melanie Mathieu. To get into the atmosphere “Better Way” creates, check out the music video for “Used to Think,” and stream the album on your favourite service.