Hinterlandt & Andy Rantzen – ‘Smoke & Mirrors EP’ (Wood And Wire)

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When Andy and Jochen played a concert together in late 2013 they immediately decided to collaborate. A process was quickly found: Andy would write all the lyrics and record the vocals; Jochen would write, perform and record all the sounds and music.

Being a conceptual project, there is a strict theme underlying the lyrics. Taking “limitations” as a starting point, Andy wrote a very similar arrangement of verses for each of the tracks. Approaching the task like a poet rather than a musician, all vocals are purely spoken-word recordings that touch on the theme in one way or another. Song titles are taken from the first line of the respective lyrics.

Responding to the formulaic nature of most popular music and the “limitations” theme, Jochen decided to take the pop song principle to the extreme. He imposed a number of strict rules on himself, including the decision to produce all tracks for an exact length of two minutes and to use a two-string guitar. Typical Hinterlandt elements include uncommon time signatures, heavy use of effects and asymmetrical song-writing.

The vibe is playful, magical and untrustworthy. This is the realm of the charlatan.


Andy Rantzen is a Sydney-based recording artist and writer best known as part of the duo Itch-E and Scratch-E alongside Paul Mac. In addition, he has released several solo albums under his own name and with Cherry2000 and Pelican Daughters.

Jochen Gutsch is a German-born musician and composer who lives in Sydney. He has played hundreds of shows internationally and released a large number of albums in various formations, mostly under the name Hinterlandt.

Hinterlandt Website
Hinterlandt Facebook
Hinterlandt Twitter
Andy Rantzen Soundcloud
Andy Rantzen Twitter


1. I Project In Metaphor
2. Abandoned Objects Possessing Great Power
3. You Are Immersed In Your Imaginary Way
4. Grief Is Manna For My Machines
5. Watch Me Disappear


Cover photo by Lawrence English

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