He studied musicology, English language and literature, and philosophy. After playing for several years with rather unknown bands such as “Parka” and “Bum Khun Cha Youth,” a solo appearance in Hamburg in 2003 lead to contact with Alfred Hilsberg, who helped him release his debut album “Vorher Nachher Bilder” (literally: pictures of before and after). The album came out in March 2004 on Hilsberg’s Label ZickZack Records. One song appeared in advance on a ZickZack label compilation.
The album CD (including the single “Gespenster” (Ghosts)) was well received by critics (including critics from the publications “Spex,” “Zeit” und “Konkret”), and was frequently referred to as the “best German pop album of 2004”. In particular, the ambiguous German lyrics were highly praised.
The record was mentioned as having its roots in the “Hamburger Schule” (Hamburg school), mainly due to the producers of the album: Armin von Milch and Tobias Levin who in the past had worked for such Hamburg-based indie bands as “Tocotronic,” “Kante” and “To Rococo Rot.” Apart from the independent pop and classic singer-songwriter influences, critics also pinpointed synthpop, Neue Deutsche Welle and euro-disco as references for Friebe’s style. Friebe himself said in an interview to have been influenced in part by German “fun punk” bands like Die Ärzte and Die Goldenen Zitronen, as well as by the German experimental pop duo Foyer Des Arts.
Jens Friebe’s live performances are either acoustic sets (just him and a guitar) or with a band. He currently lives in Berlin and writes for the German music magazin “Intro.”
Edited by miniwatt on 17 Jul 2008, 21:34
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