Making its debut today is Bitter Elixir, the new project from Christoph Liggio – a.k.a. Krztoff – and Roger Ebner, and while it may be April Fools Day, the band is no joke. With the debut single, the band presents a cover of The Beatles classic “Help,” transforming the original song’s rocking energy into an slowly ominous and dark helping of industrialized blues, as Liggio’s distorted voice and programmed beats stomp beneath the melodic howle of Ebner’s saxophone treatments; according to Ebner, “‘Help’ reflects the sense of urgency and uncertainty of ‘the new normal,’” he and Liggio working remotely from each other’s studios in Chicago and Brooklyn, respectively. Adding to the single is the Bitter Elixir original “Stop,” with the band planning more releases throughout the year and beyond.
Bitter Elixir was formed following Ebner and Liggio’s meeting onstage at the Pigface 25th Anniversary show in Chicago in 2016; the two struck up a friendship and began to collaborate, with the project taking several shapes and names before finally coalescing into its final form as Bitter Elixir. An accomplished multi-instrumentalist, with a specific focus on Saxophone and wind synthesizer, Ebner has worked with the likes of Yeti Rain, World Organization of the Righteous Movement (W.O.R.M.), Pigface, and his own Roger Ebner Band; he is also the owner and creative director for Music For Movement, whiich generates funding for research and treatment for Parkinson’s Disorder. Liggio, also a Pigface alumni, is best known for helming BILE, having released the “Children of the Gun” single in 2020; a new BILE album is reportedly in the works.