Bitstream News from under the radar
The Wire is teaming up with the University of East London to present a series of symposiums on the topic of Critical Beats: Electronic Dance Music, Club Culture & the East London Connection. The series will take the form of six talks and panel discussions involving musicians, producers, critics and writers on the scene and each event will be themed to explore a particular aspect of the culture as it manifests in East London and beyond. The first panel on Sound, Rhythm, Technology & Microgenre takes place at London’s Stratford Circus on 3 November. Full details in next month’s November issue.
PRS For Music Foundation have announced the first 13 recipients of their Women Make Music awards, which aims to address the gender gap in music in the UK. Commissions of up to £5000 each include Bela Emerson’s Falling Up soundtrack for outdoor circus theatre performers Mimbre; Susan Stenger’s six hour composition Full Circle for woodwind, brass, strings and voice; Jennifer Walshe’s ‘catwalk’ performance marking the 50th anniversary of the World Wildlife Fund; Bridget Hayden’s Strong Horses collection of six new pieces developed for real-time layering techniques, and many more. prsformusicfoundation.com/women
Odd Future (or Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, to use their full name) has published a book featuring the LA hiphop skate punk collective’s own photography, design and writings. Called Golf Wang, it promises “a glimpse into their experience as they themselves see it”. After the announcement of a multi-million dollar deal to create their own record label, expect acting roles and other such opportunities to be offered to Tyler, The Creator and Hodgy Beats any day now. pictureboxinc.com
Film maker Tyler Hubby is working on a documentary on composer, violinist and film maker Tony Conrad. Titled Completely In The Present, it isn’t set for release until 2013, but it promises to feature the director’s personal footage of Conrad dating back to 1994, plus the latter’s own archive of recordings and films. tonyconradmovie.com
David S Ware
More documentary action, this time on free jazz saxophonist David S Ware. Ware – who in 2009 underwent a kidney transplant with an organ donated from a fan found via a mailing list – is a long-time practitioner of Transcendental Meditation. Another notable advocate is David Lynch, founder of DLF.TV, who produced the documentary. One of the stated aims of DLF.TV is the promotion of TM, alongside the celebration of “consciousness, creativity and bliss”. The short film is available to watch now online via dlf.tv.
Peter Brötzmann, another saxophonist subject to a recent documentary, is the winner of this year’s prosaically named biennial German Jazz Award. Brötzmann, who turned 70 this year, will receive a prize of €15,000.
While it might seem that only grizzled veterans scoop up all the plaudits, Jazz Burghausen invites entries for the 2012 European Young Artists’ Award, which promises its own €15,000 prize (split as €5000 in cash and €10,000 in promotion) to young jazz artists not older than 30 years old. Applications closing date is 1 November. b-jazz.com
In another retromaniacal, Mighty Booshstyle ‘taking retro to its logical conclusion’
move, London’s self-described “Victorian anachronistic punk rock” group of double negatives The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing have announced their second wax cylinder release. Limited to 50 handmade copies and featuring one new, original track, each costs £25 and comes with instructions on how to build a cylinder player to audition the release. freewebstore. org/blamedfornothing
Robert Ashley’s 1983 television and stage opera Perfect Lives is getting a new treatment. Brooklyn’s Issue Project Room will present Vidas Perfectas from a Spanishlanguage translation of the American composer’s work in its full seven episodes for both the formats it originally appeared in. The first three episodes premiere this December at Irondale Theater in Brooklyn. Meanwhile, Issue Project Room will host a benefit art auction featuring photographs, paintings and works on paper by artists such as this month’s cover artist Christian Marclay, Andy Warhol, Lee Ranaldo, Yoko Ono, James Franco, Wayne Coyne, Tony Conrad, Jutta Koether, Cindy Sherman, John Waters and more. Tickets to the event, which will be bookended with performances by Steve Roden and A^ction (Kim Gordon, Tony Conrad and John Miller), cost $125, or $50 for members. The proceeds will go to the organisation’s year-round activities, but
Robert Ashley we can expect more fundraising activities, as IPR proceed with plans for their new theatre construction, having raised $2.3 million towards the $3.7 million necessary for that project. vidasperfectas.org, issueprojectroom.org
The Wire’s Mike Barnes has just published a revised edition of his 2000 book Captain Beefheart: The Biography. Following Don Van Vliet’s death in December last year, the updated version contains new interview material and references reports and eulogies that appeared in the media. omnibuspress.com
Meanwhile, The Wire’s Nick Richardson is working on an essay on Black Metal live performance for a forthcoming book. If you have memories of gigs that you’d like to share, or old gig reviews or opinions/theories on the subject, he’d be glad to hear from you. Please write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
London’s gallery of sonic arts SoundFjord is working with Audio Gourmet’s Harry Towell and Bartosz Dziadosz to produce a fundraiser album in aid of those affected by the recent riots and city centre unrest in the UK. The work – which is scheduled for release in October and is tentatively titled A Silent Swaying Breath: A Public Record ley)
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New and exclusive on thewire.co.uk this month
8 | The Wire | Bitstream
Music from Anat Ben-David, Chris & Cosey and Hieroglyphic Being. Plus a new Bill Orcutt video, and exclusive footage of Sun Araw in Jamaica
Regular sections are updated on a daily, weekly or more ad hoc schedule. These include:
The Portal Our pick of the web with guest links from a host of outsider musicians and artists
The Tumblr: Sleeves Received A new platform for top sleeve art from The Wire postbag: thewiremagazine.tumblr.com – is meant as a “statement and monument to collaboration and community”, and will weave together a selection of one-minute, unedited recordings from artists, musicians and the general public from around the world. SoundFjord is based in Tottenham, the location of recent riots following the fatal police shooting of a Tottenham man. It also triggered several nights of unrest in cities across the country. soundfjord.co.uk, audiogourmet.co.uk
Dub Vendor, London’s veteran reggae dealer, has shut its doors after 35 years as a market stall and two record shops. Dub fanatics can find some solace in the shop continuing online as a mail order service. Dub Vendor’s location in Clapham was close to some of the areas worst hit by recent unrest in London, and according to a statement from Dub Vendor, “Recent events have accelerated our decision to concentrate completely on our online and mail order service.” dubvendor.co.uk
The 12th edition of the venerable Chambers Dictionary will feature the terms ‘dubstep’, ‘grime’, ‘mashup’, ‘beatboxing’ and ‘bash’ment’. While we applaud the word-nerds’ attempt to keep up with everchanging musical times, we’d like to point out that no one ever spells ‘bashment’ with an apostrophe in it. chambers.co.uk
Here’s one for the nerds in Catalonia: organisers L’ull Cec have announced four monthly, three-day seminars taking place in Barcelona which promise to cover the basics and advanced techniques of sound synthesis, plus an introduction to SuperCollider (if taken as a whole). Sessions are led by the likes of Thor Magnusson, whose PhD dissertation in Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence was titled “Epistemic Tools: The Phenomenology Of Digital Musical Instruments”. The first one runs from 30 September–2 October; €90 for one seminar and €200 for all four. lullcec.org
Domino Records have announced the physical release of the collaboration between quirky pop ensemble Dirty Projectors and Björk, Mount Wittenberg Orca, which came out last year as a download only. Inspired by a whale sighting from Mount Wittenberg in Northern California, it contains seven tracks totalling 21 minutes and will appear on CD and a hand-numbered, limited edition LP with deluxe packaging on 25 October. dominorecordco.com/mountwittenbergorca
Anthony Braxton is the subject of a festival in New York this month. Titled Energies, Ideas, Intuitions, the four-night event takes place at Roulette and promises “the most comprehensive portrait of the composer yet presented in the United States”. Braxton himself will perform or conduct each evening, and each night will include at least one premiere of his work. Programmes will encompass opera, orchestral, chamber, solo, electroacoustic, choral and dance works and musicians will include Mary Halvorson, Nate Wooley, Jessica Pavone, Aaron Siegel and more. Following this event, New Braxton House, the label operated by his Tri-Centric
Lost tapes: Can
Foundation, will release the first ever studio recording of the composer’s opera Trillium E. The four disc set will include the libretto, photos and critical essays. roulette.org, tricentricfoundation.org
Mute and Spoon Records have announced further details of their 40th anniversary Can reissue project. The group’s 1971 classic Tago Mago is set for reissue in a deluxe CD edition this November, with an extra disc of previously unreleased live material from 1972. All 14 of Can’s studio albums are to be packaged up in early 2012 as a vinyl deluxe box set which promises to include a never-released live album. Another box of unreleased studio, soundtrack and live material, The Lost Tapes, is scheduled for March 2012. To kick off the Can frenzy, Abtart gallery in Stuttgart and Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin are hosting visual homages to the group under the name Halleluwah!, with tributes and responses to Can in visuals and sound.
The roll-call of artists includes Malcolm Mooney, Carsten Nicolai and Robert Lippok, and the exhibition at Abtart continues to 5 November. At Künstlerhaus Bethanien it will run from 24 November until 18 December. mute.com, spoonrecords.com
Visual artist and film maker Helen Petts has been commissioned by the Cultural Olympiad to make a film following German artist Kurt Schwitters’s route of exile from Nazi Germany to Ambleside in the Lake District, where he ended his days. The film will be seen as an installation alongside Schwitters’s Merzbarn wall in an exhibition at the Hatton Gallery in Newcastle next June, and it will feature a Merz-like soundtrack created by vocalist Phil Minton, percussionist Roger Turner, Sylvia Hallett on bicycle wheel and Adam Bohman on found objects. A festival of Schwitters-inspired music will take place at the Sage in Gateshead during the exhibition. helenpetts.com
Trip Or Squeek By Savage Pencil
Bitstream | Trip Or Squeek | The Wire | 9