30 aprile 2017

Tra le sue più recenti occasioni di apertura al pubblico l'itinerante Rosenberg Museum - ideato e fondato da Jon Rose attorno alla storia e al lascito della dinastia virtuale dei violinisti Rosenberg, e del suo più esimio esponente Johannes in particolare - va annoverata la partecipazione al Liveworks a Sydney lo scorso autunno. Documenti e testimonianze sono su YT - dove c'è anche qualcosa riguardante una precedente esposizione a Berlino - e al sito dedicato.

The Rosenberg Museum is an obsessive monument to the violin in all its guises; as a musical instrument, as a visual and sonic object, as an iconic cultural artefact, as a symbol of taste, class and power. This institution resists any convenient definition: It could be seen as either a fiction built out of facts, or an actualisation of the manifold virtual possibilities of a string instrument, and though it once nominally resided in the town of Violin, Slovakia, it really inhabits a conceptual rather than a physical space. Fundamentally, the Rosenberg Museum is an expression of its creator Jon Rose's idea of the violin as an unfinished experiment, a counterbalance to conventional attitudes towards what a violin should look and sound like.
The museum houses over 1,000 violin artefacts. Installations of The Rosenberg Museum have been featured all over Europe in its 30 year life, now it's finally home. The museum is the creation of violinist, composer, artist, inventor, writer, Jon Rose and houses a cornucopia of violin iconography - a cabinet of curiosities highlighting violin stories that are musically perverse, historically twisted, or culturally critical. Amongst the collection is featured a robot violin played live by very wealthy Wall Street traders, a player piano transcription of a Las Vegas casino where extremely poor people lose the rest of their money, a bowing machine, an automatic string quartet powered by Robbie Avernaim's SARPS, Cor Fuhler's Keyolin, a plethora of home-made instruments, a musical coffin, a replica of Paganini's penis, the ultimate book of music criticism 'rosenberg 3.1', and violin iconography that is profound, humorous, bent, and often transgressively challenging. The museum also celebrates a retrospective look at three Jon Rose projects - the world renouned Great Fences of Australia, The Pursuit Project, and The Relative Violins including a reconstruction of the triple neck wheeling violin.


29 aprile 2017

Tra i partecipanti all'esoterica maratona sonora 24-Hour Drone che si tiene tra oggi e domani nei suggestivi spazi del centro artistico Basilica Hudson, nello stato di New York, c'è anche il redivivo David Garland, impegnato nella prima esecuzione di un suo esteso brano, Lux Temporalis, quanto mai adatto all'occasione ('it's lengthy, lush music about the temporariness of light, sound, and breath'). Con lui un nutrito gruppo di amici vecchi e nuovi, tra cui Guy Klucevsek, David Rothenberg, Jane Scarpantoni e Iva Bittova. Si dovrebbe poter ascoltare tutto sul web in tempo reale tramite https://wavefarm.org/listen


28 aprile 2017

A poco più di un anno dal debutto, proprio in questo luogo, torna a deliziare il selezionato pubblico del Vout-O-Reenee's londinese il jazz cabaret di Paintbox Jane, ideato da Mike e Kate Westbrook attorno alla figura del pittore e scenografo francese Raoul Dufy (1877-1953). Nel frattempo il programma si è evoluto e ampliato - ne scrive la stessa Jane del titolo su LondonJazz - e in formazione, anziché Chris Biscoe, ora c'è Alan Wakeman, in buona forma dopo i malanni dell'anno scorso. Per due sere consecutive, stasera e domani.

A joyful new jazz cabaret, Paintbox Jane, with words by Kate Westbrook and music by Mike Westbrook, is currently on tour. This is a small-scale jazz theatre piece in the tradition of previous Westbrook shows Platterback, Art Wolf and The Ass. It is billed as “a celebration of Raoul Dufy’s paintings and a meditation on the nature of Art in words and music”.
The Westbrooks, both of whom studied Art, have pondered the subject in various musical projects over many years. Indeed, vocalist and lyricist Kate Westbrook has a parallel career as a painter, recently exhibiting her painting series Diana and Actaeon in London.
The cabaret is performed by Westbrook & Company – Kate Westbrook, Martine Waltier and Billy Bottle, voices, Marcus Vergette, double bass, Alan Wakeman, saxophones, Mike Westbrook, piano and actor Tim Goodwin as Raoul Dufy. (Incidentally Marcus Vergette is also a practising artist – a sculptor. He has work around the country and abroad – in London his Harmonic Cannon, two bronze bells on an oak structure, is currently on public display at Trinity College of Music, Greenwich, which coincidentally holds the Westbrook Collection of scores).


27 aprile 2017

Magari al Vortex si esagera un po' sul calcolo degli anni, ma ne son davvero passati più di alcuni dall'ultima volta che Keith Tippett e Louis Moholo-Moholo si sono esibiti in duo per il pubblico londinese: accade di nuovo domani sera nel glorioso jazz club di Gillett Square, passata neanche da ventiquattr'ore la sbornia dell'Intakt Records Festival, e l'attesa è quella di un vero e proprio evento.

Playing as a duo on a British stage for the first time in years, this night matches two iconic musicians, known for their range of influences and technical prowess. Keith Tippett’s piano playing is mesmerising, while Louis Moholo-Moholo still captures the energy and surprise that he brought over already to this country when a member of the legendary Blue Notes.
It is always a major occasion whenever Keith Tippett or Louis Moholo-Moholo appear at the club, and here we are bringing the two of them together to celebrate one of the most important partnerships in the history of jazz in this country. When we arranged this date Keith said: “Tell them that between us we’ll be bringing 146 years of music, experience and comradeship to the occasion.”


26 aprile 2017

L'etichetta Dropa Disc, emanazione dell'associazione belga Sound in Motion promotrice di festival e iniziative per musiche di ricerca e d'avanguardia, firma il debutto discografico del trio PEN (Evan Parker, John Edwards, Steve Noble) contenente la registrazione del loro concerto ad Antwerp del 24 gennaio 2015. Ne scrive gran bene Martin Schray per Free Jazz Blog: "Parker has played with most of the leading figures in British improvisation, so it’s surprising that the trio with John Edwards and Steve Noble has been unrecorded, until now. On PEN Parker’s lines slip in and around bass and drums, blurred yet finely elaborated, like a northern light in a dark winter sky, bringing to mind one of Gerhard Richter’s abstract paintings. Like Richter, Parker displays a fluency and ease - proficiency mastered but not on display. As Mingus once said: "Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity." Whereas Richter seems to comment on an illusionary effect - the appearance of something not quite present - Parker’s more concrete. His tenor saxophone meanders and flows, as bass and drums flicker like stars. The music is tight and cohesive, with no unnecessary affects (one of the principles in his bands), as well as excellent timing. He lets Edwards and Noble prepare the ground before stepping into the arena, winding in a relaxed fashion through a maze of rolling bass and high speed percussion. Once warmed up, the trio progress effortlessly, with Parker’s softer, fuller tone, a characteristic of his more recent playing."


25 aprile 2017

Si estende anche a molti titoli Matchless e Confront la sezione downloads curata dal negozietto virtuale del londinese Cafe Oto, mentre si allunga la lista delle produzioni in proprio atte a documentare a campione la fervida attività concertistica: più di recente Carl Stone, Leo Svirsky, Ilan Volkov, Joëlle Léandre con Maggie Nichols e Roger Turner, Otomo Yoshihide con Hiroshi Yamazaki ed Evan Parker, Merzbow, Philip Corner e Phoebe Neville, Antoine Chessex con la premiata coppia John Edwards / Steve Noble, Trad Gras Och Stenar, Accident du travail, The People Band...


24 aprile 2017

E' pronto un nuovo libro di David Toop, ma non è ancora il promesso secondo volume di Into the Maelstrom (Bloomsbury, 2016); si tratta invece della sua autobiografia, e uscirà a giugno in Giappone in un'edizione curata da Du Books per Disk Union. Il titolo è Flutter Echo: Living Within Sound.

“My books are always personal” scrive David “Flutter Echo is different for being a way of examining my own evolution as a person who has worked with many different aspects of music, sound and listening for nearly 60 years. It allowed me to be relatively open about the way in which events of life, relationships, collaborations and disasters shape the work itself. For me it’s about change, learning how to be fluid enough to go where your collaborators and the works take you and learning how to be patient enough to wait for your ideas to mature.”


23 aprile 2017

Non era d'accordo sul titolo - un'iperbole mutuata da Guitar Player - ma era certamente soddisfatto del contenuto, e fiducioso sul suo destino: Allan Holdsworth ha fatto appena in tempo a commentare con Dan Miles il box retrospettivo The Man Who Changed Guitar Forever!, curato da Manifesto e pubblicato in questi giorni assieme a un'altra bella raccolta antologica, Eidolon, alla cui compilazione ha contribuito di persona. Ai posteri, ormai!

Absorbing the entire The Man Who Changed Guitar Forever! box chronologically provides an opportunity to follow Holdsworth's evolution over the course of the 21 years represented by these twelve albums, from his earliest days as a leader (I.O.U. and Road Games through to to his most recent studio date with a group (Sixteen Men of Tain) and the largely solo, largely SynthAxe, largely (and unfairly) overlooked Flat Tire: Music for a Non-Existent Movie. In between, there's a host of equally groundbreaking records: the classic 1985 I.O.U. follow-up, Metal Fatigue; his SynthAxe-dominant trifecta of 1986's Atavachron, 1987's Sand and 1989's Secrets; a more balanced return to guitar and SynthAxe on 1992's particularly strong Wardenclyffe Tower and the following year's equally powerful Hard Hat Area (Holdsworth's only album to feature a consistent instrumental quartet rather than his usual choice of trio, with occasional additions of keys and/or vocals); and 1996's None Too Soon - despite largely framed in the jazz sphere (and being often pegged in the progressive rock arena), his one and only "real jazz" record as a leader, with standards culled from jazz giants including Django Reinhardt, Joe Henderson, Bill Evans and John Coltrane.


22 aprile 2017

Su YT non mancano documenti video di varia importanza e natura su Allan Holdsworth: riprese amatoriali e professionali effettuate durante concerti e sessioni di studio, interviste, video didattici e dimostrativi con analisi dello strumento e studio delle progressioni di accordi, esempi e imitazioni da parte di emuli e allievi, curiosità e apparizioni in qualità di ospite speciale, e poi brani storici di Tempest, Soft Machine, UK, i Gong di Pierre Moerlen e i nuovi Lifetime di Tony Williams, il gruppo di Bruford (all'epoca di Feels Good To Me, con Annette Peacock) e i vari progetti guidati in proprio a partire dagli anni Ottanta, di preferenza in trio e quartetto. C'è anche una ripresa integrale del concerto a Venezia-Marghera il 30 gennaio 2004 con John Marshall e i compianti Elton Dean e Hugh Hopper, alcuni estratti dal tour del 2008 con il supergruppo HoBoLeMa (con Terry Bozzio, Tony Levin, Pat Mastelotto) e qualche momento di una delle ultimissime esibizioni del Nostro, il 3 aprile 2017 a San Pedro (California).


21 aprile 2017

Scorrendo i commenti di amici e ammiratori di Allan Holdsworth affidati in questi giorni ai social non è raro incontrare anche quelli di musicisti e colleghi del benamato chitarrista: tra questi Jean Luc Ponty, Dweezil Zappa, Frank Gambale, Gary Husband, Steve Vai, Eddie Jobson e Steve Howe. Scrive ad esempio Bill Bruford: "With enormous sadness I write to express my condolences to Allan's family on the loss of a much-loved father and grandfather, my friend and colleague. For several years in the 1970s, through my own band and UK, I listened to him nightly, launching sheets of sound on an unsuspecting audience, changing perceptions about what guitars and guitarists should or could be doing, thrilling me half to death. I would have paid to be at my own gig. Allan wasn't easy, but if it was easy it wouldn't have been Allan. Like all creative musicians he was restless and relentless in pursuit of 'the perfect sound', the one that he couldn't get out of his head, the one that would never leave him alone. Now he will be at peace. Still, my guitar gently weeps."


20 aprile 2017

Varie dichiarazioni di Allan Holdsworth riguardo il suo periodo nei Soft Machine sono raccolte nel libretto, curato da Aymeric Leroy, che accompagna l'album Floating World Live (MoonJune Records, 2006) ricavato da una registrazione del gennaio 1975 per Radio Bremen. Un passaggio sull'argomento è anche in un'intervista raccolta nel 2008 da Anil Prasad per Innerviews, con un cenno al progetto Soft Works, precursore della Legacy: "I met John Marshall and Karl Jenkins through the Musicians’ Union. There was a guy at the union who was organizing some clinics for Soft Machine, but he wanted a guitarist in there as well. He asked Soft Machine if they would consider doing these clinics with an extra guy and they said “Sure.” So I rehearsed with the band and we did four or five clinics. After, they asked if I would join the band and I said “Yeah.” There was a lot of freedom in the group. Most of their pieces were quite simple harmonically, but they were in odd time signatures which was something going on at the time. I can’t count anyway, so everything is in one to me, but I really dug it. I love Karl, John, Roy Babbington, and Mike Ratledge. It was a lot of fun. I revisited Soft Machine with the Soft Works project. I felt it was something I should do, but it became a logistics problem with the three guys being in England and me being in America. Another reason for why we didn’t do more is because sadly, Elton Dean passed away. That was really tragic. Before he went on a vacation to Tahiti in 2004, he stopped at my house and spent a couple of days with me. On his last day with me, we went to the golf club to get a few beers, then he left and it was the last time I saw him."


19 aprile 2017

Sid Smith recupera un badge con l'immagine stilizzata presa dalla celebre copertina di Reg Cartwright per Bundles per introdurre il suo personale ricordo di Allan Holdsworth: Remembering Allan Holdsworth taking flight...

"He often burned brightest in the company of others where his obsessional perfection could be harnessed or focussed in a way that showed his unconventional brilliance to its best effect. If Holdsworth could sometimes be frustrating with his habit of abruptly taking flight himself as he moved on to the next gig that caught his eye, his inspired approach broke free of the usual gravitational norms of the instrument to such a degree that most of his collaborators, though sometimes angry and disappointed at the time, nevertheless came to regard it as a privilege to have been able to witness his starry inventions first hand."


18 aprile 2017

Tra i primi a reagire alla notizia dell'improvvisa scomparsa di Allan Holdsworth è naturalmente Leonardo Pavkovic, grande amico del chitarrista e per molti anni suo produttore e manager. Rilancia un appello dei famigliari, segnala un avviso di sottoscrizione in vista dei funerali, e lascia un messaggio personale: "There is no greater measure of a life well lived than the amount of people he had impacted, and by that measure the artist Allan Holdsworth lived a very good life. This man took a plank of wood, a few strings, and some wires and transformed people's lives in a way that few others have. The ultimate genius of the rarest kind. One of THE greatest musicians ever lived."

Anche Cuneiform Records lascia un'affettuosa dedica a Holdsworth diffondendo tramite YT un breve estratto dal concerto del luglio 1974 dei Soft Machine al Montreux Jazz Festival, restaurato e presentato in versione audio e video in una sua recente pubblicazione, Switzerland 1974: "The hour-long set is the only available visual document of the Ratledge-Marshall-Jenkins-Babbington-Holdsworth line-up, and it includes live versions of the entire album Bundles, most notably the classic “Hazard Profile” suite, augmented with individual showcases for each member as well as a collective improvisation and brief snippets from Six and Seven. As well as retracing Soft Machine’s transformation into one of the leading exponents of jazz-fusion, it provides a rare chance to witness the genesis of Allan Holdsworth’s unique, innovative and unbelievably fluid and dexterous playing, before he went on to universal acclaim with Tony Williams’ New Lifetime, the prog-rock ‘supergroup’ U.K., Jean-Luc Ponty, Bill Bruford and ultimately his own electric fusion groups."


17 aprile 2017

(Allan Holdsworth, 1946-2017)

16 aprile 2017

Chi è a Londra a passare la Pasqua non manchi di presenziare stasera all'avvio dello strepitoso festival Intakt Records in London, una fitta serie di concerti e iniziative dedicata all'etichetta svizzera in programma al Vortex Jazz Club tutti i giorni fino al 27 aprile. L'atmosfera oggi si prevede particolarmente lieta, dato che uno dei protagonisti della rassegna, Barry Guy, ha deciso di anticipare di qualche giorno i festeggiamenti del proprio settantesimo compleanno e farlo coincidere con la speciale occasione. L'appuntamento è dalle 19.30 alle 22.30.
Grande musica echeggierà peraltro già dal pomeriggio, sempre al Vortex, dalle 14.00 alle 17.00, grazie a una delle periodiche assemblee di Mopomoso che oggi vedrà coinvolti Mandhira de Saram, Steve Beresford, Lee Boyd Allatson, Phil Minton e John Russell. Dopodiché, tanto per rimanere a Dalston, a quattro passi di distanza si potrà assistere alla presentazione del video Nothing Here Is Perfect, in proiezione a ciclo continuo fino a sera presso il Cafe Oto: Evan Parker, Eddie Prévost, Mats Gustafsson, Thurston Moore, John Edwards, Peter Brötzmann, Chris Corsano, John Tilbury e vari altri ripresi nel corso di una dozzina di recenti concerti da Noah Payne-Frank di New Solemns Films. Alleluia!


15 aprile 2017

Probabilmente verrà ritrasmesso più volte in giornata, e magari anche successivamente, il servizio sulla guerra delle Falkland/Malvinas prodotto da RaiNews24 e diffuso oggi in sintonia con i venti che soffiano su Afghanistan, Iraq, Siria e Nord Corea. Contiene immagini e musica della Shipbuilding a noi più cara, trasmessa quasi integralmente, con molti riferimenti specifici dello speaker alla canzone, ai suoi toni, al suo testo, e diversi passaggi tratti dalla registrazione del 1983 all'Old Grey Whistle Test, con Robert Wyatt in primo piano in molte inquadrature...


14 aprile 2017

Se non li dimostra l'Instant Composers Pool i suoi cinquant'anni, figurarsi se li dimostra Han Bennink i suoi settantacinque... Eppure!

Instant Composers Pool celebrates its 50th anniversary with a weekend full of concerts at the Bimhuis, welcoming many special guests. Drummer Han Bennink, a leading figure of the improvisational group since its foundation, will celebrate his 75th birthday along with the anniversary. As always, an important share of the repertory will consist of the compositions of former ICP pianist Misha Mengelberg, who passed away on March 3, 2017.
Since its foundation in 1967 the Instant Composers Pool has been an influential platform for improvised music. It was co-founded by pianist Misha Mengelberg, drummer Han Bennink and reedist Willem Breuker. It has developed into the ICP Orchestra, a unique cross between a big band and a chamber orchestra in which brass and string players improvise on the cutting edge. The orchestra connects American swing to European music and singular improvisations. ‘They are brilliant soloists, scholars and physical comedians, critics and joy-spreaders’ (New York Times).

13 aprile 2017

C'è attesa per l'imminente pubblicazione del nuovo album di Bertrand Burgalat, Les choses qu’on ne peut dire à personne. Un assaggino a spizzico è in YT.

Né en 1963, Bertrand Burgalat est musicien et producteur. Compositeur et arrangeur il a travaillé sur plus de 200 disques, composé pour Marc Lavoine, arrangé Supergrass ou remixé Depeche Mode. Interprète, il a publié six albums sous son nom. Au cinéma il a signé les musiques de films de Valérie Lemercier, Eva Ionesco ou Benoit Forgeard. A la télévision, il produit Le Ben & Bertie Show, fiction musicale diffusée sur Paris Première et W9. Tricatel, la maison de disques qu’il a fondée en 1995 est entièrement consacrée aux artistes inclassables (Chassol, Jef Barbara, Ingrid Caven, April March…), aux projets hors-norme (Jonathan Coe, Michel Houellebecq…) et à des compositeurs comme André Popp et David Whitaker. Auteur de nombreux articles et préfaces, directeur (avec Bertrand Dermoncourt) d’une collection consacrée à la musique pour les éditions Actes Sud, il a publié un essai, Diabétiquement vôtre, en octobre 2015 chez Calmann-Lévy.


12 aprile 2017

Alle canzoni e le poesie di Molly Drake, madre di Nick, è dedicato il quarto lavoro extracurricolare delle Unthanks - forse il loro migliore, afferma Adrian McNally - realizzato con il diretto coinvolgimento della primogenita di Molly, Gabrielle: The Songs And Poems Of Molly Drake, album presto diffuso in vari formati, un'appendice con ulteriori brani (Extras) disponibile a parte, e un lungo ciclo di concerti nel Regno Unito al via dalla prossima settimana fino a fine maggio. Informazioni: http://www.the-unthanks.com


11 aprile 2017

Luigi Marinoni e Federico Mari erano a Legnano martedì scorso a seguire - beati loro - la performance di Hobo con Alessandro Achilli su Robert Wyatt, per il penultimo appuntamento di Sconfina/menti. Recensione e immagini sono in http://www.sempionenews.it/spettacoli/robert-wyatt

10 aprile 2017

Appassionati dei Residents da ogni parte del mondo producono personali versioni di brani ed estratti dall'immenso catalogo dei propri beniamini e li inviano ai curatori della serie Who Killed Ralph?, giunta in pochi mesi al sesto volume. Da tenere d'occhio. Ha-ha!


09 aprile 2017

Dopo le edizioni in videocassetta, doppio cd audio e dvd singolo il devoto magmiano ha finalmente occasione di procurarsi per la quarta volta la documentazione dei concerti parigini del maggio 1981 al teatro Bobino, nel cuore di Montparnasse: Magma Bobino 1981 ('nouvelle présentation' 2cd+dvd).

Après une première décennie conclue en apothéose par les concerts de la Rétrospective de l'Olympia en Juin 80, Magma, en investissant Bobino pour une durée de trois semaines en Mai 81, entame une nouvelle phase de son évolution musicale. Composé de morceaux joués par la formation précédente, mais également de titres nouveaux, le répertoire de ce Magma 81 se situe dans la continuité de celui de la tournée consécutive à la sortie de l'album Attahk. La coloration rhythm'n'blues de sa musique s'est encore accentuée avec l'apport des frères Guillard aux cuivres, et les titres, plutôt courts, commencent à laisser davantage de place à l'improvisation. Klaus Blasquiz ayant quitté le groupe pour d'autres horizons, Christian Vander, épaulé à la batterie par Doudou Weiss, prend désormais en mains une partie des vocaux aux côtés de Stella Vander, Lisa Deluxe et Guy Khalifa.
Paru en 1995, ce double CD vient combler un vide dans la discographie du groupe puisqu'une grande partie des morceaux présentés n'ont jamais été enregistrés en studio depuis; c'est le cas notamment de Zess dont la version électrique, illuminée par les prouesses vocales de Christian Vander et la folie furieuse de la guitare de Jean-Luc Chevalier, justifie à elle seule l'acquisition de ce disque bourré d'une irrésistible énergie.

08 aprile 2017

Le musiche dei Can risuonano oggi in varia guisa al Barbican di Londra per uno speciale omaggio voluto per festeggiare i cinquant'anni di vita del gruppo tedesco (e, indirettamente, l'ottantesimo compleanno il mese prossimo di Irmin Schmidt), ma che inevitabilmente assume anche i toni dell'affettuoso commiato da Jaki Liebezeit, scomparso a inizio d'anno: The Can Project. In programma ci sono un'intervista pubblica al tastierista condotta da Rob Young, una lettura sinfonica di alcuni brani tratti dal repertorio storico del gruppo eseguita dalla London Symphony Orchestra, la proiezione del celebre Free Concert filmato alla Sporthalle di Colonia il 3 febbraio 1972 - con gli interventi del prodigioso giocoliere Fred Ray - e una performance elettrica di un gruppo ad hoc capitanato da Thurston Moore di cui fa parte anche il cantante delle origini, Malcolm Mooney. A seguire l'immancabile DJ set, di cui si farà carico The Kosmische Club.

Founding member Irmin Schmidt premieres an orchestral reinterpretation of classic Can material alongside new work with the London Symphony Orchestra, before an all-star band of former Can members and long-time admirers pay tribute to their pioneering music.
Assembling their music through improvisation and studio editing, Can’s writing process resembled collage. Tonight, Can founder Irmin Schmidt takes that approach to their entire oeuvre, conducting the world premiere of his piece Can Dialog, written with Gregor Schwellenbach, which weaves together quotations and abstractions of some of the band’s most renowned pieces.
After an extended interval screening of Can’s 1972 performance at Cologne Sporthalle, the second half of the show brings together a supergroup led by Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), featuring Can’s first singer Malcolm Mooney, realising and reinterpreting the band’s music.
Laying the foundations of what came to be known as Krautrock, Can became one of the most influential avant-rock groups of all time, and echoes of their work is audible in everything from Joy Division, to Radiohead, to Kanye West. Can combined the deconstructed rock’n’roll of The Velvet Underground, the determined rhythmic propulsion of Sly & the Family Stone, and the appetite for studio experimentation of their former teacher Karlheinz Stockhausen to create a new kind of rock music – something avant-garde and groovy, both wildly experimental and utterly compelling.
The show will be preceded by a Q&A with Rob Young, author of a new book devoted to Can, published by Faber & Faber – one-part biography, one part memoir by Schmidt himself.
After the show there will be a DJ set by The Kosmische Club; set up back in 1996 in a bid to introduce London to Krautrock, the club now hosts nights across the UK and Europe bringing Krautrock to the masses.


07 aprile 2017

Esce in questi giorni un nuovo studio accademico curato da Georgina Born assieme ad Eric Lewis e Will Straw, con il contributo di una dozzina di altri relatori, incentrato sulle caratteristiche e le potenzialità dell'improvvisazione musicale quale luogo in cui si coltivano e si creano forme nuove di pratica politica e di relazione sociale. Si intitola Improvisation and Social Aesthetics (Duke University Press Books, 2017) e nel corso delle sue corpose analisi passa in rassegna numerosi esempi nei campi del jazz, del cinema, della danza e della letteratura, citando tra gli altri l'AACM, il Feminist Improvising Group, la Nouvelle vague, Billy Strayhorn e Kenneth Goldsmith.

Ancora di Georgina Born, presso i meravigliosi archivi di Academia.edu - il social network colto amabilmente indicato come il 'Facebook degli accademici' - sono disponibili due sue interviste piuttosto recenti, Temporalities, aesthetics, and the studioMy responsibility is to be bold. Quest'ultima riporta in premessa un significativo acconto della sua esperienza negli Henry Cow, tuttora indicata come la più formativa nella sua intera carriera. Perché?

"I saw an advert for a bass player in an interesting group: Henry Cow. I applied and, amazingly, I got the job, because by then they were writing complex scores, and I was the only person they interviewed who could read those scores. However, I’d never played bass guitar before! So I tuned the bass in fifths - like the cello - and then I could make it work. After a few months of rehearsal with them in the very hot summer of 1976, when punk music was breaking out all over the UK, we went on tour. I dropped my place to read composition at Cambridge, and that began two years of touring almost constantly - well, for about six months each year. Henry Cow was in a kind of turmoil, because money was short. The group had become independent of their former record company, Virgin Records, trying to manage themselves and create alternative institutions. They did manage this for several years, but it wasn’t working out economically. This experience with Henry Cow remains perhaps the most formative in my whole career. Why? Not so much because of the music, but because of the whole experience. We were working everywhere in Europe, in political ways. We went all over Italy doing tours playing at numerous Feste dell’Unità, which were the Communist Party’s summer festivals that happened in every large city and small town, all summer long. In France, we would play the circuit of Maisons de la Culture in lots of provincial cities and towns all over the country, as well as the Socialist Party’s summer festival in Paris. Wherever we played, we were doing work at the borders of new music and politics. I was 20 years old; the rest of the group was much older, and I didn’t yet really have the formation to understand fully what we were doing (remember, I hadn’t yet been to university). It left me with a lifetime of questions about the articulation between music and politics and the social, and it was full of contradictions. There’s a little paper I’ve written recently on this whole experience about politics and Henry Cow. It tells some of the stories, for instance, about turning up in a town outside Naples to play a Festa dell’Unità to effectively an audience of Italian farmers and peasants. We started late in the evening with our atonal rock, our polyrhythmic scores - we have recordings of all these gigs - and about 2 minutes in, somebody starts to boo, about 3 or 4 minutes in people start to clap in a hostile way, and then we continued to play for an hour and a half - and this noise carries on the whole time! We didn’t discuss this much in the band in my memory, but I was left thinking: “What does it mean to bring modernist rock with political lyrics to Italian peasants in a Festa dell’Unità? And to elicit hostility and antipathy from those we were putatively trying to reach, to give musical pleasure to, and to politicize with our music?” These experiences left me with an intense set of questions that have informed all my later work. What didn’t inform my later work is some kind of mindless devotion to the music we were playing at the time, or any of my later performing work. Although I still find aspects of it very interesting, I was also very troubled by our music - especially the more modernist parts and the improvising. We did a great deal of electronic improvising in Henry Cow, in between and linking pieces and songs, often 20 or 30 minute group improvisations; and these days I find those passages much more fresh and interesting than the rather awful folk-rocky interludes, of which there were plenty. I also admire these days the most austere modernist pieces; they too stand the test of time quite well and offer what remains a very original sound world. So, I am ambivalent about Henry Cow’s music and I always have been. As you can hear, I always had some doubts about what we did, but I was also fascinated by and believed in what we were trying to do. I’m very interested in the interface between music and politics, and while the group’s aspirations were tremendous, the reality was problematic in a number of ways."


06 aprile 2017

Buon esito ha avuto, a detta dei protagonisti, la conferenza-concerto tenuta la scorsa settimana da Chris Cutler, Yumi Hara e Guy Harries per il ciclo Practice as Research per gli studenti dell'University of East London, anche per merito degli studenti stessi, coinvolti in prima persona nelle più cruciali fasi dell'allestimento tecnico audio e video dell'evento. Cutler ha parlato estesamente della serie di podcast Probes, da lui prodotta negli ultimi cinque anni per il Museo d'Arte Contemporanea di Barcellona e correntemente diffusa da Radio Web MACBA. A questa serie è dedicato anche uno speciale apparso in questi giorni sul web in Perfect Sound Forever a cura di Jonas Vognsen.

Beginning in 2012, Ràdio Web MACBA – the online "non-profit research and transmission project" of The Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art – has been hosting Probes, a series of podcasts curated by Chris Cutler, founder of ReR Megacorp and drummer of Henry Cow and Art Bears. The program delivers a comprehensive history of new musical developments over the last more than 100 years. As such, it deals not only with changes in technology and material circumstances, but is also a study in the life and spread of ideas.
Using part of Marshall McLuhans's conceptual framework as a starting point, the series has to date described various movements in the music of the industrialized world where composers and musicians shifted from a focus on pitch to more broad experimentation with timbre. Topics explored include prepared instruments, extended techniques, the use of ancient, folk and exotic instruments, portamenti and noise, as well as in-depth looks at the human voice, harpsichords, gamelan and exotica – with new instruments, non-musical objects, amplification and electrification coming up on the horizon. Probes is a unique resource, not to be missed by anyone interested in our contemporary world of music – and how we got here.


05 aprile 2017

E uno speciale cofanetto sta per pubblicarlo anche Confront Recordings, in un'edizione limitata a sole cento copie: si tratta di una raccolta antologica in cinque cd di cinque diversi concerti offerti tra il 2005 e il 2009 dall'ensemble The Seen in cinque diverse formazioni, ogni volta sotto la guida di Mark Wastell. Tra i musicisti coinvolti ci sono molti nomi ricorrenti nelle produzioni dell'etichetta londinese, che di recente ha festeggiato i suoi primi vent'anni di attività: Rhodri Davies, David Toop, Phil Durrant, il compianto Wolfgang Fuchs, Burkhard Beins, Dominic Lash, Joe Williamson, John Butcher, Paul Abbott e molti molti altri. Informazioni e prenotazioni: http://www.confrontrecordings.com/the-seen-archive-volumes-i-v

04 aprile 2017

Dallo speciale cofanetto Alterations Limited Edition Boxset realizzato in occasione dell'Alterations Festival - al Cafe Oto londinese il giugno scorso, dal 13 al 19 - fuoriesce anche individualmente la registrazione del concerto che segnò il ritorno sulle scene del quartetto delle origini, dopo quasi trent'anni di inattività: Live at Iklectik London 2015. Dai concerti del festival proviene invece Void Transactions, con una selezione di brani proposti in quei giorni dal solo quartetto, senza i numerosi ospiti: Peter Cusack, Steve Beresford, Terry Day e David Toop. Produce il tutto Blanca Regina, con fattura molto artigianale e in quantità assai limitate, con il marchio Unpredictable Series.


03 aprile 2017

Per una sua puntata di Out to Lunch per Resonance FM Ben Watson recupera una misteriosa registrazione inedita di Lol Coxhill in trio con Stuart Hall e Pat Thomas: uno degli organizzatori del concerto, John Plant, conferma via FB che si era a Londra, presso il Tom Allen Centre a Stratford, nei primi anni Ottanta. Il documento ora è custodito in archive.org

Lol Coxhill - soprano sax, wry commentary, improvised narration; Stuart Hall - guitar, violin, bass; Pat Thomas - piano, electronics. This gig was part of the Brilliant Corners Jazz Project organised by John Plant and Kevin Michael Cockerell at the Tom Allen Centre in the early 80s. Sound and recording by Alick Letort. Pat Thomas and Ulrike Coxhill both said "fine" about it being made available online for the many people who value every note Lol played (we don't know what's happened to Stuart Hall). The picture of Lol was drawn by OTL at Lol's Esemplastic Tuesday with Sarah Gail Brand at the RCA on 11th November 2003.


02 aprile 2017

Chi invece fa sul serio è Hobo, che torna a presentare a Legnano - dopo Mantova e Piacenza - il suo progetto dedicato a Robert Wyatt, creato in collaborazione con Alessandro Achilli. Martedì 4 aprile alle ore 21.00, al Cinema Sala Ratti.

La rassegna Sconfina/menti, curata da Roberto Ferdani, ospita Hobo plays Robert Wyatt - Musica e parole di (e su) Robert Wyatt. A cura del critico e giornalista musicale Alessandro Achilli. Musiche eseguite dal duo Hobo: Eloisa Manera (violino, voce), Massimo Giuntoli (tastiere, voce, arrangiamenti)

01 aprile 2017

Tutti, ma proprio tutti, cantano Wyatt. Perfino Max Gazzè, si sarebbe detto un tempo... Oggi però il termine di riferimento è Hatsune Miku, 'la prima voce dal futuro'. Bravina peraltro con O Caroline (e niente male con Kew.Rhone...)