The members of Zurich-based Len Sander spent years literally in the underground – hiding in a bunker outside of the city, exempt from influence – just to ensure that the sound and concept they were developing was unique and experimental enough to share with the world. The four-piece – built around vocalist, songwriter, visual artist and sociologist Blanka Inauen and producer Al Hug – share the goal of blending music, art, fashion, and a brace of other disciplines into an eclectic and expressive union.
At the release of their debut ‘Phantom Garden’ in early 2015, Len Sander had already been signed by Mouthwatering Records, a label known for representing some of Switzerland’s keenest musicians such as Odd Beholder, Laskaar and True. Since then, the band has developed into a pillar of a thriving Swiss music scene. Many of the songs on their debut album have been remixed by household names in Zurich such as Pablo Nouvelle, Wolfman’s Angelo Repetto (formerly known as Nkelo), Dave Eleanor, Knor and Oilst and Ben Jarli. Evolving their multifaceted sound, the success of the band’s next single ‘Places’ – and its corresponding found-footage-video – went through the roof, being played on BBC1, SRF3, SRF Virus, Couleur3, Rete 3 as well as MTV/Viva and generating 400,000 plays on Spotify.
Just one year after the release of ‘Phantom Garden’ the hyper-productive group delivered ‘Saltlick’, an EP comprised of four songs featuring the performance artist and actor Severin Hallauer on the cover. One of the tracks, ‘Another Man’, was picked up and turned into a short-story-like video by Zurich-based film-collective Hillton continuing the development of Len Sanders music feeding into a multitude of mediums. While splitting her time between Zurich and Berlin, singer Blanka befriended DJ and musician Alex Barck, an integral member of the producer-collective Jazzanova. Together with Comixxx, Alex Barck produced a remix of Saltlick and in exchange, Blanka delivered vocals for Barck’s and Comixxx’ project ‘Homeless’. Making sure that their presence was keenly felt throughout 2016, the band toured Switzerland, Austria, Germany, the Czech Republic and Italy and at the end of the year, Len Sander went on to win two awards from the Zurich independent radio station GDS.FM for Best EP and Best Live Act.
At the beginning of 2017, the band took some time off touring and relocated temporarily to Berlin to write songs for their second studio album. The intensity of the band’s will of expression culminated in a momentary high: The release of the single ‘Woman On The Run’ in October of the same year was accompanied by a heralded yet unsettling video, directed by film-maker Janic Halioua that starred eleven emerging performers from the country’s contemporary acting scene. The album ‘The Future Of Lovers’ (mixed by Hannes Bieger) followed soon thereafter, together with a publication comprising the lyrics of the album, complete with drawings by Blanka and photographs by Sonja Berta – compiled and arranged in a visionary way by graphic designers Lea R. Fischlin and Andreas Hänggi. Musically influenced by diverse artists such as Solange Knowles and Justin Vernon, the oeuvre examines philosophical questions about the state of sex and love in our post-digital world. Remixes by two of Switzerland’s boldest producers Marlon and Cella followed in spring 2018.
At this point in time the band has proven their digital worth by reaching over 1 million plays on Spotify while maintaining a widespread acknowledgement of their live presence after performing intriguing live shows at some of Switzerland’s most important festivals such as Gurten Festival, Paléo Festival, Moon and Stars, Montreux Jazz Festival and Zurich Openair.