Katsen are an electronic pop duo from Brighton, England consisting of Donna Grimaldi and Chris Blackburn. Donna and Chris met back in 2001 at a craft fair, when Donna's brilliant mixtapes, with their bold collage covers, caught Chris' attention and fired his imagination. For the first time, after playing two-fingered synth in various bands, he'd met someone with the tastes and talents to compliment his own. Together with a collection of toy Casios and old monophonic synths (some held together by gaffer tape), they began crafting what would become their 12 track debut album "It Hertz!"
"We'd get together to listen to records and after exhausting Donna's extensive and very cool collection, we'd get out my synths and toy keyboards and create our own sound long into the happy night."
Interrupted only by Donna running away one summer to join the circus, and Chris teaching acting to ballet dancers, Katsen songs continued to form, taking cues from 50s chic, 70s krautrock and the sharper edges of 80s synthpop.
Following on from cameo appearances in compilations such as "Bot POP" (Happy Robots) and "Electronically Yours Vol.1" (Undo/ EMI), "It Hertz!" is the full-length offspring of Katsen's eight-year partnership; the love of the square wave and all things Casio.
For fans of: Section 25, Ladytron, Mint Royal, My Favorite, Annie, Compute
Praise for Katsen:
"Alternative Album of the Week" - Steve Lamacq, BBC Radio 1 "At its heart this is pop music and their effects are used to amplify rather than swamp the tunes, sometimes to heartburstingly lovely effect." - Sounds XP "Ones to watch." - Drowned in Sound "Keeping the light on in Brighton is Katsen, a likable duo that gives their gear bed-privileges and, in return, gets a higher level of synth-pop dedication out of them. "Constellation" is a punchy, catchy tune about the things that bind us confused little pin-pricks of light into something larger and more meaningful. It comes from Katsen's great debut album Ñ after eight years together! - It Hertz!, which has better songs and way more snap to it than the usual synth-pop workout these days." - RCRD LBL "Glitch prog electro with hints of 50s chic and 70s krautrock; Katsen take elements from past times and genres to create their own awe inspiring sound." - Subba-Cultcha "They are a duo who take the best of the darker side of 80's electronica, deconstruct it and produce perfect futuristic D.I.Y, pop noir." - Von Pip Musical Express "Katsen have produced a rather grand LP that stands up well against past masters and they're probably at the top of the emerging crop of synth pop upstarts." - Oddbox "...they look amazing. And clearly like cats. What more do you want?" - A Layer Of Chips "Katsen have painted a musical landscape that conversely manages to be retro yet futuristic, aloof yet imbued with heartfelt emotion After all, as Roy Batty finally discovers in Bladerunner, cold analytical intellect and logic devoid of empathy and emotion are essentially empty and meaningless. The machines may well be taking over, but Katsen demonstrate these machines have human hearts." - Altsounds "It's full of variation, from the frenetic kraut-inspired opener, Let's build a City, to the incrediby beautiful hypnotic end track Florian." - Eardrums Music "Incredibly, with such an ambitious list of ingredients the final result is a sumptuous feast of electronic pudding." - The Music Fix "Stuffed with both fun & reflective moods & whilst possessing a very high benchmark of quality!" - Norman Records "A tasty slice of Casio driven electronic pop mixed with more than a healthy dollop of Krautrock." - Indie-MP3 "Conclusive proof that years spent battering away with the sound-chips on a ZX Spectrum can finally yield sparkling results." - Culture Deluxe "Dizzily effervescent, a tad panic stricken and as catchy as swine flu, its hooks and dinky demeanour are alone more than enough to send various kitchen appliances into untold rapture while simultaneously arresting your senses with its precocious pop shocked zeal." - Losing Today "This album is in many ways like a bunch of roses, primarily aesthetically pleasing yet possessing a few painful thorns." - Muso's Guide "A pure, delectable stomper of a pop tune- not a note wasted- and far too good to remain hidden for much longer. An uplifting tune that works instantly and it's all rather brilliant and fun....Katsen's lead singer Donna Grimaldi looks like a pop star in waiting with a sharp Swing Out Sister haircut and some very posh English vocals." - Electronically Yours "I think it's brilliant... amazing, even! Christopher and Donna exude a fun (and even adorable if I do say so) energy that helps make Katsen one of my favorite electro newcomers..." - Computer Love blog "Katsen found the plethora of voices provided by such microcosms brought a joy to their hearts, singing twee psychedelic odes to the stars from where ledged had told the elders had once visited. When times were hard the people found such uplifting music important." - 20 Jazz Funk Greats "If Lily Cole and Bagpuss cross-bred in the machine from 'The Fly' and the resulting human / cat mash-up was let loose on a Korg and a laptop, this is the music it would make!" - Happy Robots "This is what we've been missing for such a long time, beautiful pop music. This is as good as it gets. More beautiful than love, Katsen is love... Katsen is the solution to everything... long live Katsen!!!!!!" - Mr. Blue blog "All the joy of Mint Royale's 'Don't Falter' with even more analogue invention." "Early '80's computer game bleeps kick start an insanely catchy analogue intro with perfect English Rose Donna Grimaldi delivering lines much like Sarah Nixey of Black Box Recorder."- Electronically Yours
Catalogue number: LIFE059
Artwork by: Katsen
1. Let's Build A City
2. Chequered Flag
3. Start As You Mean To Go On
4. Island In An Island
5. What You Want
7. German Film Star
8. It Hertz!
10. Where Nobody Can Find Us (mp3)
11. I'm A Doctor
ON THE WEB:
www.myspace.com/katsenbeeps PRESS DOWNLOADS:
One Sheet pdf
Cover art hi-res