Monday, November 17, 2008

Blaakraft @ Bodø Hardcorefestival #11

Hurray, it is that time of the year again! The fantastic Bodø Hardcorefestival celebrates its 10th year with festival no #11, and my band Blaakraft will rock down the house at the end of the opening day, Wednesday the 19th of November. Anyone around the arctic circle this week should pay the festival a visit. It runs from Wednesday the 19th and ends on Saturday the 22nd. It is completely free, you can find great food, record distros, and the fantastic lineup include bands as diverse as Manhattan Skyline, Manna, Julius Androide, Juvelen, Randy, Fippelectormonic, Death Is Not Glamorous, Laura and many many more. Check out the festival website for more info.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Torstein Wjiik on Tour with Animal Machine, Audun Eriksen & Swamps Up Nostrils

Our good friend Torstein Wjiik, who did a fantastic performance at this years Nødutgangfestival, is going on tour with Animal Machine (Poland), Audun Eriksen (Norway) and Swamps Up Nostrils (Norway) at the end of this month. If you're any of these places at the right time, make sure to look them up:

Nov 23 OSLO Sound of MU, Norway

Nov 25 REGENSBURG, Germany (Not included Animal Machine)

Nov 26 VIENNA, Austria

Nov 28 BARCELONA, Spain

Nov 29 BILBAO, Spain (MEM festival) (Not included Animal Machine)

Dec 1 BELGIUM (Not included Animal Machine)

Dec 2 TILBURG, Holland (Not included Animal Machine)

More info here

Thursday, October 30, 2008

NXP - KELA - new release for free download

A brand new release from NXP is available for free download. Said to be one of his noisier releases for a while, it sure is worth a listen.The album is called "Kela" and is out on Requiem Productions.

You can find the download here

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Grand Erector LP

German label Pure Pop For Now People has just released an interesting project by The Grand Erector. Intended as a tribute to the group FAUST, source recordings for the project were contributed by invited members of the Faust mailing list and a few other cronies. The contributions were all then dismantled, RE-processed and RE-smeazed, before being RE-assembled to make the final album. Each track was created by combining material from several sources. Being only 100 copies on black vinyl, including an 8 page 10" booklet with photos by Ian Land, it will probably sell out fast!

THE GRAND ERECTOR would like to thank Alan Holmes, Zoë Skoulding, Maeyc Hewitt and Ann Matthews (ECTOGRAM), Alex O’Shea, Steve Pittis (BAND OF PAIN), Ben Tinker (THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH), J.S. Adams, Dane Johnson, Gustavo Jobim, Jean-Hervé Peron (FAUST), Jim Bowers, Ian Morrison, Jim Donnelly, Ken Hyder (KSPACE), Mike Rowlands, Olivier Manchion (ULAN BATOR / PFE), Phil Wilson (THE JUNE BRIDES), Richard Fontenoy (STELLA MARIS DRONE ORCHESTRA), Ronny Waernes, Joachim Gaertner and Martin Brauner (S/T), Steve Fligelstone, Luis Forner and Paco Gomez (TRAUMMASCHINE), and Zoltan Pfefer.
Listen to a soundclip here

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Noisemusic - is more better?

Someone said to me in a very noisy room: "I guess you like this, being so much noise here!" This made me reflect a bit. Some of my friends, colleagues or family have no clue what this is about. They know I like noise, they know I make noise, hell they even know I am performing occationally. They would never say noisemusic, btw... But is more better? My instant reply was: "I’m not sure, it’s not that good." And good is usually better than more. Not that I am not a fan of more. No, but better is usually…well...

Maybe I should start explaining what I mean. Someone told me that they prefered noisemusic that is possible to play at a low volume. How does that relate to noise? Is this not a contradiction? Yes, it can be. If you are interested in the sheer energy and the massive wall of sound some of these artists can produce, it would be relevant. But I think that it is possible to listen to noisemusic at a very low volume, if the noise itself is interesting enough. Some prefer the repeptetive side of it, and some people enjoy the more structured side of it. The depth of a track would mean a lot to me also. When exposed to noisemusic with a minimal range of frequencies, it is harder to listen to it for a longer periode of time. One example of this can be some of the early recordings of Whitehouse which have some needling high frequencies, and nothing more.

Melodic and compositional structures can sometimes be hard to find for an untrained ear, but that is also something that would improve the listening experience. Many noiseartists would regard Lou Reed – Metal Machine Music as a pioneering work for this approach. If this is combined with depth and a wider range of frequencies, it would be easier listening to and for some considered better. Fine examples of this can be found in Fe-Mail – Voluptous Vultures, later recordings from Wolf Eyes and Lasse Marhaug. Interesting is also albums/releases that have a very wide range of different approaches or sound. Noise compilations have usually these qualities, as they have lots of different bands and artists, who naturally sound very different.

Other than that, there is also the massive amount of artists incorporating instruments and/or voices that you would easily recognise. And the other way around.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Ultima Contemporary Festival

Today is the opening day of Ultima, Oslo Contemporary Music Festival. If you are anywhere near Oslo the next 2 – 3 weeks, you should try and find time to check out some of the events. To many events to present here, but only a few recommendations:

Saturday 4th - 19:30 BODØ SINFONIETTA @ KULTURKIRKEN JAKOB w/soloists, will perform ao Arnt Håkon Ånesen (NO) Frames (2006/07), John Cage (US) Concerto for Piano and Orchestra (1957/58), Sven-David Sandström (SE) Konsert for fløyte og orkester (1980), Jonathan Harvey (UK) Wheel of Emptiness (1997).

Wednesday 8th - 10:00–12:00 THE LAPTOP AS INSTRUMENT @ AUDITORIET, NORGES MUSIKKHØGSKOLE - A presentation of eksperimental music technology by Dan Trueman.

19:30 ensemble recherche @ KULTURKIRKEN JAKOB - performs Cecilie Ore (NO) Cirrocumulus (2002/2004), Klaus Huber (CH) Plainte (1990), Younghi Pagh-Paan (KR) Hang-Sang III (2005), Karlheinz Stockhausen (DE) 7. Stunde aus KLANG: Balance (2007).

22:00–23:30 STOCKHAUSEN @ LINDEMANSALEN, NORGES MUSIKKHØGSKOLE - Kazuko Ihara, flute performes Karlheinz Stockhausen (DE) Freia (1991), In Freundschaft (1977), Ypsilon (1989) & Mikrophonie I (1964) for 6 players with tam-tam, 2 microphones, 2 filters with potentiometers. Other artists: Asbjørn Flø, Mats Claesson, Jøran Rudi, Kjell Samkopf, Rob Waring og Kjell Tore Innervik.

Friday 10th - asamisimasa w/Mark Knoop @ LINDEMANSALEN, NORGES MUSIKKHØGSKOLE - Performes Karlheinz Stockhausen (DE) Refrain (1959), Karlheinz Stockhausen (DE) Klavierstück XI (1956), Brian Ferneyhough (UK) Bone Alphabet (1991), Karlheinz Stockhausen (DE) Plus-Minus (1963).

Sunday 12th - 19:00 AL KAMANDJATI – The Violinist @ OSLO KONSERTHUS


Thursday 16th - 19:30 NORDIC VOICES With PETER BRÖTZMANN & FRODE GJERSTAD @ KULTURKIRKEN JAKOB - Concert for clarinet and voices. Nordic Voices and soprano Ellen Aagaard meets legends of improvised music, Peter Brötzmann og Frode Gjerstad.

Saturday 18th – 1800 CIKADA @ KULTURKIRKEN JAKOB
Performs pieces by Nils Henrik Asheim (NO) Ensemble music for 5 (1985), Lars Petter Hagen (NO) Sørgemarsj over Edvard Grieg (2008), Henrik Hellstenius (NO) Hi Ophelia! (2006), Eivind Buene (NO) Nature Morte (2008), Arne Nordheim (NO) Partita per viola, clavicembalo e percussione (1963).

Much, much more at ULTIMA

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Lasse Marhaug – Ear Era CD (Review)

Earlier this year Lasse Marhaug got an interesting opportunity. The Henie Onstad Art Centre invited him to go through its massive audio archive. An archive of recordings from concerts and also recordings made in the Norwegian Studio for Electronic Music, located at the centre for some years in the 70s. Recordings (about 800 tapes) filled with artists as different as Karlheinz Stockhausen, Jan Garbarek, Arne Nordheim, Mauricio Kagel, Webster Lewis, Steve Reich, Laurie Anderson, Soft Machine, and various Norwegian jazz and rock artists. Marhaug was asked to make use of these recordings to make his own piece. The result was presented at three concerts at The Henie Onstad Art Centre, and also as this CD version released by Prisma Records. It is in only 500 numbered copies, and there will also be a deluxe box-set of 50 copies available.

Being only about 30 minutes divided into 11 unnamed tracks, it promised some excitement and variety. The first track starts with wind, voices and some naïve synth playing, making you wonder who initially recorded it. For most of the CD it is difficult to identify the original artist, unless you have a very specific knowledge of some of the pieces being used. Instruments and voices are easy to spot though. Marhaug process them slightly, inlcudes various bits and pieces, and makes the track sound a bit melancholic or sad. This first track sets the direction for the majority of Ear Era. It is almost to the end a CD filled with melancholy and sadness, only with a few exceptions, and it makes me wonder if it was made on a rainy day.

One of the techniques Marhaug uses is to cut out bits of music, and loop it, but also twist the pitch, speed it up, slow it down to make it change its mood or pace. A good example of this is in track three where a couple of loops are mixed together during the first half of the track and the loops themselves are slowed down from beginning to end, and thus making them sound sad. Other cut out bits are added to the track and many of them treated the same way.

To draw attention to the point an opposite effect is added in track four, which starts off with a rather noisy, less sad loop, making a happy rhythm. But after a minute the rhythm dissapears and what’s left is some strange sounds being quite mellow also, and the track ends just after two minutes.

So the album continues, a mix of strange, weird sounds and noises, mixed carefully with some more noisier, harsher bits. Melancholy being the most prominent mood to me, but also occasional happiness and energy. What is really striking about this release, is the gentle way Marhaug mixes it all together. No part, strange or noisy is overfocused, and everything comes together as a nice whole. When seeing Marhaug live, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer energy of his noise and performance, and it can be easy to presume that he would translate that to all his recordings, but here he proves just the opposite. Nice, gentle, short tracks, but still challenging to listen to, and after 3 – 4 listens, I still find myself being surprised.

The CD ends in a way that makes me think it needed a happy or more promising finale. Track 10 is a short track of just over two minutes, and has almost the same sadness as the rest of the album. It starts with some rumbles and a rythmic sad loop, but when left with 30 seconds a female voice enters the track, and at the very end it is clearly that she is saying: “it will be best for you if anything is good for you”. And so the track ends, leaving the door open for track 11, which starts with a simple, almost generic loop. After a while some more driven parts come to life, and the track gets more and more noisy, but in a much more happy mood than the previous tracks.

This CD made me sad and made me smile. It even made me want to dance occasionally, but also made me wanting more. Ear Era is a piece of music with lots of diversity and it triggers various moods. What more can you ask? Some more, maybe?

Available from the artist.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Faust announces new release!

Legendary krautrockers Faust announces that they are about to master their brand new studio album. The album was recorded in the Fortress Studios London in August this year, and will be released some time late November by Fred Label Limited. It will be first released as a CD and shortly after there will be a vinyl release available. Featuring on the album are Zappi, Jean-Hervé Peron, James Johnston, Geraldine Swayne and James Hodson with special guest Terry Edwards. While waiting for the new album, there is a chance to see Faust at these venues and dates:

October 3rd @ the INTERZONA in Verona, Italy

October 4th @ the INIT in Rome, Italy

October 10th @ the Raindance Film Festival in London, UK - Zappi and JHP will attend a session of Q&A after the screening of "IST FAUST SCHOEN", a critical documentary film by Julien Perrin

October 11th @ The Secret Market for One of One London, UK

October 16th @ the GARAJ in Istanbul, Turkey

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Spectrum XXI Festival 2008

The third international festival of spectral music will take place this year in London, Paris, Brussels, Mons and East Grinstead from 16th through to the 26th of November. This is a festival curated by Iancu Dimutresu and Ana-Maria Avram from Romania and performers will be The Hyperion Ensemble with soloist Tim Hodgkinson, Gustavo Aguilar, Robert Reigle and the iO quartet of New York. They will present works by Dumitrescu, Avram, Hodgkinson, Petrescu, Cazaban, Vlad, Geers and others including myself. Dumitrescu and Avram with the Hyperion ensemble is probably the most vital conductors and performers (and composers!) I have seen and heard in the classical avantgarde, so if you are anywhere near one of these location at the time they are, you would not want to miss an opportunity to see a great event.

Other links: 1#, 2#, 3#, 4#, 5#

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Puma & Lasse Marhaug - on vinyl!

One of my favourite combos, the hard-hitting improv trio Puma, and the Norwegian king of noise, Lasse Marhaug have announced that they will release an album of some of the recordings they have done. Puma has made a snip available at their myspace. They will also perform together live in 2009, which they have had trouble finding time to in 2008. They will visit Japan in January and February of 2009, and also Denmark, Germany, France, Benelux and England will be visited. Dates to be announced later. The even better news is that they will make the release available on vinyl only!

I was fortunate enough to see this combo live at Nødutgangfestivalen last year, and that performance made a huge impression on me. This video is from Ekkofest in Bergen (N):

Monday, September 15, 2008

Nødutgangfestival 2009 news!

The avantgarde festival Nødutgangfestival dates for 2009 are set! This time it will be a festival in the dark autumn! This festival held just above the arctic circle in the north of Norway, has a wonderful mix of avantgarde and experimental artists and bands. Previous headlines as Faust, KK Null, Lasse Marhaug, La STPO, S/T, Jazzkammer, and lots of Norwegian and local exciting artists has made this festival an interesting event of the year.

As opposed to the previous years, where the festival has been held in June and July, the next year will see Nødutgangfestival in the late autumn. The dates has been set to 22nd to 25th of October. The main venues will continue to be Sinus, Gimle and Bremnes Fort, but with additional venues as Bodø Kunstforening and who knows, maybe some new exciting ones as well. The goal for the future is still to surprise, create joy and also provoce, and 2009 will also meet those goals. The festival will continue to develope its profile, and Nødutgangfestival will show new sides of itself next year and in the years to come.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Belles Alliances - free download

My collaboration with Brazilian artist Gustavo Jobim has recently been released on a compilation of collaborators, Belles Alliances. Last year I was given two soundclips by Gustavo, on which he played syntheziser. So I did some cut ups, processed and mixed it all in to one track, Abstract Painted Train. The release consists of great tracks all made by remixing or collaborating with Gustavo in some way. In addition to yours truly, the artists are: The Chorlton Radiophonic Workshop (UK),That Hideous Strength (USA), Nathan Siter (USA/Finland), Conrad Schnitzler (Germany), Helder Correia (Portugal), Amyr Cantusio Jr. (Brazil), Robert Jaz (USA), Member (Germany), Daniel Bordini (Brazil), Leandro Theodorico (Brazil), Justynn Tyme (USA). Check out Gustavos main page or go directly to the release for a free download of this wonderful album, booklet and all. Photos by Ian land, and artwork by Helder Correia.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Back with a track!

Finally I am back at my blog after a long brake. It has been a long eventful summer, that I will not bore you with here, but I promise that I will post more frequent after this.
Meanwhile a track has been put out (again) at the Chain Tape Collective. This time it was a project inspired by the signs of the zodiac, so the project Zodiac, consists of twelve tracks. I am not a fan of those signs, but I have learned that there is actually a thirteenth sign called the Ophiucus - the serpent holder, but the only one not included as an astrological sign. So I decided that I could be a part of this project with this bonustrack called Ophiucus. The track itself consists of snake sounds, and some spoken parts of a well known actor. Guess who?

Download the track here

Check out the entire project here

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

New track for download

A new compilation is ready from the Chain Tape Collective, and I have done one of the tracks. CT-Bugs is a collection of compositions based on a set of sample recordings of a various insects from around the world. No other sound sources were used other than the insects. The artists, all members of (CT) Collective, manipulated these sample recordings with various effects and audio software, in order to produce their final work of musical art.
Download my track here
or check out the entire album with lots of magnificent tracks from the other artists!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Nødutgang Festival Compilation

My friend at the Paranoia Is Freedom blog just posted this years album as a free download. A release to promote this years festiuval, it includes only artists participating. Not all, but some. The release is as all years a Go To Gate Records release, but this time it is a download release only:

This is a free download album to promote this years NØDUTGANG festival. It will hit everyone brave enough to be there between June 12 and June 15. The concerts and performances will be held at several venues in Bodø (Norway). For more information about the program, dates, prices etc look at this link.The album is the third in a row that pick up several off the artists on the festival and let them present their music. The first two years (2006 and 2007) came out as CDs, but we thought that it might be better to let it be a free download album. So here it is. Free for everyone to download and distribute at their www or blog or whatever. NO ONE has any permission to take any kind off fee for downloading these tracks. OK enough words lets get into the real thing. Here is the tracklisting;

Art Errorist – Esistmirkalt

Bagio – Migraine

Bjerga/Iversen - Theres A Ghost In The Dream Machine (extract for Nødutgang)

Blaakraft - Opus 23

Hr. Vandal - Through the air

La STPO - Colonies (Edit)

NXP - Soundtrack of our lives (emergency exit mix)

PLX 15 - Power Within

Scared Dog - A Space Tail Pt 1

Skoulding, Zoë – Astrolaire

Tognazzi featuring Haddy – Song For A Dark Girl

Wærnes, Ronny - Trans-micro Impro Express

The album is in two parts as RAR.

You can download part A here and part B here.

The albums for 2006 and 2007 can be downloaded for free here.

Monday, May 26, 2008

LabField church concerts

Here is a chance to start the Nødutgangfestival early. The organisations Ny Musikk, Bodø Sinfonietta & Nødutgangfestivalen will co-operate in setting up a concert in the cathedral Bodø Domkirke 3rd of june 2008 at 2000 hrs. Check out the video below:

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

New tracks - released on compilations

I have two more tracks out on the web. This time two rather different ones.

The first track was released as a part of yet another CT-Collective project, Acoustic II. Recorded during November, December 2007 & January 2008, postproduction, postcomposing and mixing during February 2008. Only acoustic sounds found in or outside my house are used. Only a minimum of processing has been done. Postproduction was mostly mixing layers of acoustic sounds together. The track is called Homeacoustics (of course), and clocks in at 5 minuts precisely.

Get it here

The second track is released as a part of the HAZE netlabels release Tribute to Tribute. The track, called 19de, is a tribute to the 19th of January when I did the recordings. It is a 12 minute noise track with screeching feedback, thunderous rumbling and more multilayered than the first in this post. A classic!

Get it here

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Nødutgangfestival announces all artists


Thursday June 12th @ Gimle
Doors opens at 19:00. Concert starts at 20:00.
Ticketprices; 30,-/50,- NOK. (with X Rockeklubb)

NXP (with Juryen)
Scared Dog Hr. Vandal
Torstein Wjiik
Bagio (Ger)

Friday June 13th @ Bodø kunstforening
Concert starts at 18:00. Free.

Lasse Jensen
Zoë Skoulding (w/Alan Holmes) (UK)

Friday June 13th @ Sinus
Doors opens at 20:00. Concert starts at 21:00.
Ticket price; 100,- NOK.

Divide Pepe (film)
KK Null (JPN)
Famlende Forsøk
art-errorist Jean-Hervé Peron (Ger/FR)

Saturday June 14 @ Sinus
Doors opens at 20:00. Concert starts at 21:00.
Ticket price; 100,- NOK.

USB (performance)
Blaakraft Bjerga/Iversen
Tognazzi featuring Haddy
Divide Pepe (film)
Varde Jazzkammer

Sunday June 15th @ Bremnes fort
Concert starts at 15:00. Free.
Be aware that the temprature inside the mountain is about 4 degrees!

Laup String Quartet
Linn Halvorsrød
Ralph und Ralph with Ronny Wærnes

Friday, April 18, 2008

More artists for Nødutgangfestival

KK Null (Japan):

KK NULL (real name : KAZUYUKI KISHINO) was born in Tokyo, Japan. Composer, guitarist, singer, mastermind of ZENI GEVA and electronic wizard. One of the top names in Japanese noise music and in a larger context, one of the great cult artists in experimental music since the early 80's.


Famlende Forsøk:

They started up in the early 80s, but with major inspiration from the 70s industrial music represented by Throbbing Gristle, S.P.K. & Cabaret Voltaire. In early releases they used metal percussions and industrial sounds, but later they abandoned the metal percussion, but continued down an even more experimental path, and during the 90s developed a more improvised approach.



Local band MetroGnom plays 70s instrumental symphonic prog, with elements of spacerock and fusion. Some call it eclectic prog. However, they achieve making 20 minutes long pieces of music, without sounding boring. As a live band, MetroGnom is explosive, raw, jazzy and tender. They vary wonderful between rythmic and flowing melodies.


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Winter photos

We've had some snow this winter...


My garden bench
You can see more pictures here.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Jean-Hervé Peron/Andrew Liles album out

The new album of Faust frontman Jean-Hervé Peron and Andrew Liles from NWW and Current 93 is out on art-errorist label. The track "The Drummer is on Valium" is on download from the art-errorist site, and the album is available for sale direct from the site also. A very enjoyable track that promises more pleasures in forthcoming listens and live performances!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Nødutgangfestival 2008

The three first bands are ready for Nødutgangfestival 2008, in my hometown of Bodø, Norway. French avant-rockers La STPO, Norwegain soundartist Linn Halvorsrød and local heroes PLX-15.

La STPO (France):

La Société Timides à la Parade des Oiseaux was born in may 1984 on the ashes of the band Sarajevo, which played an impossible compromise between Pere Ubu, Wire and such bands.
La STPO fights against anyone defining them. Dadaism, avant-prog, punk, RIO, jazz, zeuhl og no-wave will be some of the experts opinion about this society, but they will twist and turn it to fit into the surreal La STPO world. Evidently inspired by avant-prog bands like Henry Cow or krautrockers Faust. Vocalist Godjikian describes the muisc as "musique explositionniste". He explains smilingly this french expression: music that induces explosions in the head of its listeners.


Linn Halvorsrød:

The Radio vibrates someplace between 100 channels, Anton LaVey and Johnny Cash are having a game of Poker in the next room, intence, chanting, with a glimps of sunshine through the torn up curtains, subpop, collage, music concrete.


PLX-15 is one of the more important cult bands in Norway. participated on the very much talked about compilation ”Can a Butterfly Smash a Weel?” reviewed in the March edition of The Wire. They played some kind of punk-synthpop, by some named as pre-techno. They will have a reunion at Nødutgang 2008.


Sunday, March 02, 2008

Chain Tape Collective

The CT Collective was originally started by Michael Klobuchar as a chain tape group; that is, as a group whose members recorded music by mailing a master tape throughout the United States and Europe. The finished tape was then cleaned up and distributed to the members as a CD. No one got paid for any of this, and the organization, mastering, and mailing of our collaborative projects was done by members who volunteered their time and resources.

Nowadays, the CT collective have multiple projects going on, and it is a modern internet based collective. The projects are streamable from the website, and all the tracks are downloadable. I have recently participated in some projects, and here are two of them just now published:
Birds. This project was about only processing bird sounds. Click the picture to go to the project and access all the tracks. My track is also here:
Birds and Men. This project was also about processing birds, but combining human generated sounds as well. Actually, both projects was done at the same time. Click the picture to get access to all the tracks. Mine is also here:

To join the CT Collective, suggest projects, and contribute music and/or labor to the cause, go to the links page and click the mailing list link.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Avantgardefestival Schiporst

It is about time to start planning the summer, and what better place to start if not in Schiporst.

In the north-German countryside, on a farm, something important happens. Being audience or artist. During a weekend, performance and concerts of high quality and professional standards happens, in a mixture you will never find anywhere else. Add the homely atmosphere created by Jean-Hervé Peron and Carina Varain at their homefarm, and the fact that artists and audience eat and drink together, and you have a setting almost unbeatable. I have lovely memories, fantastic experiences and made very good friends at Schiporst (not to mention all the records I bought!).

As of now the following line-up appears on the festivals website:

Nurse With Wound (UK/USA) (c)

Ana-Maria Avram & Iancu Dumitrescu, Chris Cutler &Tim Hodgkinson (RO/UK) (c)

Faust ( A/F/UK) (c)

KKNull (JAP) (tbc)

Stahl Quartett (GER) (c)

Sunseastar (UK) (c)

Xabec (Ger) (c)

Black Carrots (UK) (c)

Silent Movies (I) (c)

ElectrixGarden (GER) (c)

Traummaschine ( SP) (tbc)

Biomass (I) (tbc)

13th Monkey (GER) (c)

Sternschuss Trio ( ISR/GER) (c)

Daniel Sarid & Assif Tsahar (ISR) (tbc)

Pierre Chevalier (B) (c)

Brian Mitchell (USA) (c)

Asylum Lunaticum (GER) (tbc)

Saturday, February 16, 2008

New release

I am proud to announce that Ambolthue Records just released my new solo cdr Johnny Guitar. About 30 minutes and 4 brand new tracks. Crushing sounds and lots of energy is some key words for this release.

It's available through the labels mailorder at a very reasonable price, and you might find other goodies there as well.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

New sounds - Stokastiske Lodd

In October 2007 I teamed up with Hallstein Sandvin in Hønsehuset studio. We had some great fun improvising, and made some wonderful noise. Hallstein mixed together the sounds we made, and composed two tracks. You can listen to it at our new Myspace, or download the tracks here:

Let us know what you think. We might do another session in the studio, and watch out for the results here.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Salvatore wins Norwegian award

Strangely enough, Salvatore was nominated and won the Norwegian Spellemannspris 2007 in the category of Electronica. Salvatore claims to be playing instrumental rock music, and use simplicity and repetition with an optimistic, emotional feel. It's an underground band, but with a sense of spaciousness and they have been quite inspired by German krautbands as NEU!.
Salvatore has mixed and explored different styles, and members have gone back and forth into the line-up. Previously, some of the members of the band used to be in electronica groups, and they sometimes mix electronic sounds with live guitar, bass and drums. This perspective might be the reason why they won this category, and of course the album itself. From the label:

2007’s first album, Days Of Rage, is Salvatore’s 6th, and was released on New Year’s Day. Now the ever-evolving band features two new English members: Anthony Barratt from Billy Mahonie (Too Pure) and Leon Muraglia, the man behind the legendary Kosmische Club in London. Still having one foot in the Kraut department, they have added more electronic elements. It might their most accessible album this far.
Not quite rock/pop, and not quite art/experimental, Salvatore inhabit an important mid-point in contemporary music. The music is intelligent, but does not compromise on heart, and that great feeling of euphoria.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Sonic Arts Network

A couple of days ago I recieved "Blood, Muscle & Air" - the new CD from the Sonic Arts Network. It concists of great vocal work by artists from around the world. Amongst the 14 vocalists we find our own Maja Ratkje and other great names such as Jaap Blonk, Chris Mann and David Moss, who curated the release and will be performing in Stavanger in September. All of the artists have theire own unique style, but they are rooted and connected to the listener by the blood, muscle and air we all possess. Great inventiveness also brands the vocalists and they have all a powerful and personal performance, it impressed me very much.

By joining the network for only £25 (£20 for UK residents), you get three CDs a year, and lots of info as well about what is going on in the UK:

Sonic Arts Network is an organisation in the United Kingdom that enables both audiences and practitioners to engage with the art of sound in diverse, accessible and innovative ways. Sonic Arts Network fosters a culture of creative risk taking and experimental approaches to sound through a cutting edge programme of festivals, events, commissions and education projects. The organisation believes in the unique capacity of listening to enrich people’s lives by unlocking creativity, promoting social and environmental awareness and engaging a diverse range of communities.Sonic Arts Network’s activities separate into three main areas:

Activities – Events, regular festivals such as Cut and Splice and Expo, tours and commissions.

Education - Award winning national education project Sonic Postcards, artist workshops and talks.

Network - Sonic Arts Network is a membership organisation that is the hub of information, opportunities and publications for the UK sonic arts scene.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Incapacitants, Hijokaidan & Birchville Cat Motel

are simultaneously released by Lasse Marhaugs new label Pica Disk. Japan noise veterans Incapacitants CD "Burning Orange" is a live recording from All Ears festival in Oslo, Norway in January 2007. This is actually a split with Incapacitants - Fumio Kosakai and T.Mikawa on track one (Orange Smoke), followed by (Out Of Schnaps ) by "Fumio Tommiakawa" who are- Kosakai and T.Mikawa with Tommi Keränen). Track one is simply fantastic pure noise, complex or simple as it can be, and you can hear the two just trying to kick ass. In a sense they do, as this is a live recording that contains a lot of energy in all its beauty. The second track starts out more varied, and it seems that the (three on this) artists try to communicate with each other. I love it after just one listen and I am already looking forward to some more rounds.

Hijokaidan is a duo of Jojo Hiroshige (guitar) and Junko (voice). The high pitch voice of Junko is a perfect match to the guitar shredding noises of Jojo Hiroshige. The "Polar Nights Live" CD was recorded at All Ears festival in 2006. From the Pica Disk website:

"Jojo and Junko performed as a Hijokaidan two-piece on the opening night of the festival, a rarely heard line-up. Their performance got such a tremendous response that they came back for an encore (Otomo Yoshihide, longtime Hijokaidan fan who also performed at the festival, proclaimed "Incredible! Hijokaidan never does encores!"). The second night Jojo collaborated with guitarist Per Gisle Galåen (DEL, The Birds), unleashing thick layers of psychedelic and distorted guitar fog, which fans of of Fushitsusha, Les Rallizes Denudes and Jojo's non-Hijokaidan work will appreciate. The final night saw Junko hooking up with noise-nik Sten Ove Toft (Ryfylke) for a hellish meltdown of twisted electronics and the most intense voice in music.
Unlike most other noise acts Hijokaidan has not spoiled their fans with a huge number of releases, which makes Polar Nights Live an even more unique statement of pure noise sound."

Bircville Cat Motel "Gunpowder Temple Of Heaven" CD contains a 40 minutes long noise-drone track. This is the project of New Zealander Campbell Kneale, and the track is building and building and is not even drowning itself! the CD also comes with a booklet with Birchville Cat Motel discography.

All the CDs come in nicely done paper wallets, and you can read more and check soundsamples at the labels website.

In addition you should check out some of the Pica Disk releases from 2007!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Why does some music make people angry?

In my favourite mailing-list, The Faust List, we had a small debate about this topic. It was raised due to experience that especially avantgarde music often makes some people furious. Some of the artist mentioned here was Sun Ra and Captain Beefheart.

This is a question with some complexity attached to it... But here is how I tried to respond to it (and some more which I added just now):

While working with people for many years, I have learned that sometimes it is impossible to predict what provoces a certain individual. This can be both clients and/or professionals I worked with or co-operated with. While working with behaviour problems, I also learned that it is very difficult to predict what triggers anger or rage, unless I was given the opportunity to investigate further. What I found as a common ground, was that most of them had an internal unsafety, sometimes based on disorganized attachement or attachement disorders.

"Attachment disorder refers to an inability to form normal attachments with caregivers during childhood. This may have adverse effects throughout the lifespan. Results of a study showed a positive and strong correlation between the security of the child-mother attachment representation and positiveness of self. It also showed significant and positive correlations between positiveness of self to competence and social acceptance, to behavioral adjustment at school, and to behavioral manifestations of self-esteem"

I am not saying that anger by adults towards avantgarde music co-relates to this (so far). BUT disorganized attachement makes people want to have more control! What I also found was that if someone had low self-esteem, or insecurity in the self and you combine this with a strong need of control, it would often create some form of behavioural problem, depending on how the people around this certain individual would relate to him/her. When these individuals are left in charge, and can do as they please, without being asked questions or in other ways provoced, no problems whatsoever will appear. Other than maybe someone don't like what they do at times.

Say that someone has been exposed to a boss or someone in charge who doesn't want to debate a decision and/or controlling every aspect of someones job. My theory is that this boss has some of these problems I describe. Certainly if they get angry if you try to debate something or ask uncomfortable questions. This need of control can easily adapt to how we relate to most of our world, also art.

It is also easy to understand that how we look upon our selves (self-esteem) affects our feelings, and our feelings in the next step affects our behaviour. And for most people art, and also music is affecting (or as someone pointed out, inspires) feelings as well. This is probably also the order of it; so how we look upon our selves would have a strong affect upon how we respond to art, which again will affect our physical reactions to art, and certainly music.

Music, unlike most art, is difficult to escape, especially when we are exposed to it in closed confinements. Or rooms, work, tv or radio at home...not everybody can slam the door to close it out. A painting or a sculpture that provoces you is easier to shut out. When exposed to something you don't understand and have no control of how you are exposed to it, it surely does something to you - emotionally. Response is often with silence, withdrawal, sadness, or in this case anger.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Record an album in 29 days!

It's almost that time of year again: Enter the RPM challenge! Write, record and put together an album of original material during the month of February. Just go to the site and sign up for the deed. Last year I went ahead and ended up with my release The Soprano Challenge, so I am gonna sharpen my tools and get ready this year as well. This is not a traditional contest, all you have to do is finish the challenge, and you are a winner. Last year more than 850 albums where submitted and more than 8000 songs can be found in the jukebox.

From the website:
"This is the challenge: record an album in 29 days, just because you can.
That’s 10 songs or 35 minutes of original material recorded during the month of February. Go ahead… put it to tape.
  • Recording can only be done in the month of February – no prerecorded songs.
  • All material must be previously unreleased, and we encourage you to write the material during February too.
  • Participating bands get their own page on the site, which you can blog to as much as you want. You also get access to the band-only discussion board, where you can swap ideas, resources, etc., and the ability to e-mail and private message with the other participants.
  • All the completed albums may be put up in the jukebox on the website, if you so choose, so people can check it out; conversely, if you’d rather not share your work with the public, then no one needs to hear it but us.

Write some instrumentals, split up the songwriting duties amongst band members, form an RPM side project, write songs on the piano or clarinet instead of your primary instrument, make that metal album you’ve always wanted to - buy a ukulele! Just do your best to make the best album you can. Be unafraid. What if every musician you knew put their music first for 29 days? What if you recorded the best song of your life? What if the world was never the same? What’s stopping us? Nothing. February is Record Production Month. You have no reason to say no, and nothing to lose."

So, do you accept the challenge?

Monday, January 14, 2008

HumdinGer releaseparty 26th of January

HumdinGer is one of my favourite local punks. Consisting of Steven Balmbra - vocals (aka Balmbrain), Tommen Hveding - Guitar, Lars Nicolaysen - Drums (with me in Psykisk Tortur & Blaakraft, and veteran noisehead in town) & Johnny Larssen - Bass (from Krim U and recently also in Blaakraft). Inspired by a wide range of music as punk, jazz, prog and experimental, they deliver a varied setlist. Although they are in many senses a punkband, they are to me a lot more.

Our own label Go To Gate Records, have just released "What you hear is what you get", a wonderful 10" picture disc by HumdinGer (included is a cdr of the music if you have problems with the format). Recorded live in the studio, it has the rawness of a punkrelease, but the tracks prove a band well shaken together. At the releaseparty they will do all the tracks AND more, and the record is of course up for sale!

This night they are supported by the DJ-ing of Ole Ivar from Metrognom & Mouches Volantes, the latter did a very nice job at last years Nødutgang festival in collaboration with Alan Holmes of Ectogram amongst others. Ole Ivar has promised to play a variety of his own flavours, which normally(!) ranges from ancient prog to modern music. So all in all an event I am really looking forward to!

Friday, January 11, 2008


A Film By Tom Hovinbøle
[OHM] Records & Pastiche Films 2004

This double pack DVD & CD was one big inspiration for me when I first saw it. A dvd documentary about noise music is not something you can find in your common record shop or at your local dvd pusher. For me it represented a glimpse into a world quite unknown to me. Once I saw it I knew that noise was something accounted for and somehow my experiments did enter a path leading to live perfromances. I have always listened to strange music and normal music, but once this film was put in my dvd player I realised that I had missed out on something for years and years. Not strange, though, as the noise scene had somehow stayed underground for many years and only in resent years has arised and made its way to more common knowledge.

from the [Ohm] Records website:

"NOR NOISE is a documentary about Noise music – perhaps the most exiting and innovative form of music to evolve in the last years. The film maker Tom Hovinbøle has since the project started in 2001, interviewed some of the most central artists, both internationally and in Norway. The artists speaks about their relationship to tis music: What is it? Where does it come from? How do you work with pure sounds? Which possibilities opens up with the new sound processing opportunities? Noise is also put into an historical context spanning from the Futurists and Luigi Russolo before the First World War, through the first experiments with electronical music in the fifties, the avant-garde in the sixties, the Industry and Punk movements in the seventies, before Noise establishes it self as a music in its own right in Japan during the seventies. The film also contains a lot of rare concert footage with the artists. "

Some of the artists participating: Tore H. Bøe (Origami Republika), David Cotner (USA), Masami Akita (Merzbow), Lasse Marhaug, Maja S.K. Ratkje (Spunk and Fe-mail), Francisco Lopéz (Spain), Helge Sten (Deathprod) and Otomo Yoshihide (Japan) , and on the CD you can hear exciting Norwegian acts such as Jazzkammer, Crazy River, Norwegian Noise Orchestra, Fe-Mail, and more.

It is still available from the website, and being released in 2004, it is still highly valid today. In my opinion it provides an interesting introduction to Norwegian (and some international) noise history and it is a wonderfully done documentary with english subtitles.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Live @ Sound of Mu, Oslo, Norway, 27th of Oct 2007

Photo by Espen Wærnes
Situated almost at the bottom of Markveien, close to the river, Sound of Mu has a large window to the street where passers by can check out the contemporary events taking place, or art on the walls. Inside it is light and high under the ceiling, and the furniture is minimalistic retro - a chair and a table to put your pint on. Owned by artists the venue/coffeeshop has lots of various things going on; concerts, exibitions, DJ's, bookreleases and festivals. Not a crowded place, but defenetily a place where you can be surprised or have your prejudices racked.

Per Gisle of Apartment Records did the booking of this gig, being a part of the Fritt Fall concert series. I was in Oslo to see another gig by a major Canadian act, and I was up and running in high moods from the big event from the night before.

On this particular Saturday afternoon, I shared the place with SunState, normally only Swede Jon Eriksen and Norwegian Lars Myrvoll, but this time they did an extended version and where joined by three musicians. Free jazz noise would be one way to describe it. I might load up some vids of them another time, so you can make up your own mind. Here is some vids from my own performance:

Video by Espen Wærnes

Video by Espen Wærnes

Video by Terje Sjøli