In 2005 Jessie Evans moved to Berlin. Then, like a personal ad from God in an alternate universe, she met Bettina Koster, singer from the pioneering, John Peel-beloved post-punk band Malaria!. In 2006 the vox/sax duo released the self titled album AUTONERVOUS.
This recent album mixes two undergrounds, Berlin 1980 (Koster) and San Francisco 2000 (Evans). There's an Amanda Lear cover ("Gold"), a German-language reworking of the Vanishing's "Still Lifes" ("Still Kaltes") and, natürlich, lyrics about love 'n chains.
The album was recorded at Fraulelein Studio in Berlin, mixed and mastered by Ingo Krauss at Lost in Space Berlin. Musically it is very unique and cannot be easily categorized, with influences ranging from pop, new wave, rocksteady, krautrock, latin, disco, deathrock, film and free jazz. Both women sing and play saxophone and have created the sound organically, so even though it is electronic its much more natural; the atmosphere is loose yet gripping, inviting visitors to come closer - like they want to catch you in their web but once they do they will shower you with kisses and if youre lucky throw you on the floor. Bettina has a very low and sultry voice, Jessie's voice is a snake who cries out and laughs in between wrapping around the solid yet off tempo timing of Bettina's.
If it is too easy to say that the lyrics are mostly about love, getting together, and lust in general, to touch, to reach out of our cages, that what we have been induced into or reduced to isn't necessary. Then listen: "We can break these chains, we can skin this cat" "You don't have to wait to come outside, we know you'll feel better in the light."
Live, from stoic to a wild shimmying extravaganza, a deranged cabaret experience' they will always dare the audience to break out of their perceptions, to see something they may be afraid to see.
In 'Still Kaltes' Bettina rewrites Jessie's song 'Still Lifes' from Vanishing, in the dark dance track 'Anchors Aweigh' Bettina sings "I was the object of so many desires, but now Im stranded on this beach" to which Jessie replies "You're not a mute and you know how to move it!"
As the two are so different the interaction on stage is sometimes like the old comedy duos, as playful as it can be serious. The music is also very theatrical, taking the listener deep into surreal and unexpected places with each track. 'Sax New Age' is an industrial jungle that exudes sensuality, 'Hello Lovers' playground pop which might as well have been sung by the children in Fritz Langs M, 'Gold', a remake of the Amanda Lear hit from the 70s. 'Prescription', a dark and dizzying film piece, 'Easter Bunny' a Brazilian techno acid trip. 'Why Shiver', a slow ride into the wild, saxophones like birds screeching mysterious invitations for thrills to come.
While AUTONERVOUS is no longer preforming as a duo, both Jessie Evans and Bettina Koster are currently at work on their solo albums