Posts Tagged ‘Experimental Music’

“Memphis” (Digital Painting/Album Cover, 2007)

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

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“There is no history to tell us of the beginnings of Memphis, only legend. It’s legendary founder, Menes, may have been one or several of the shadowy figures whose identity has never been established. Menes however… has been acknowledged through the centuries as the first ruler of Egypt. Before his time, the country was divided into Upper and Lower Egypt, each separate and distinct from the other and largely made up of independent kingdoms. Menes united these into one undivided Egypt.” (Marion Teena Dimick, Memphis: City of the White Wall)

This image was later used as the cover for the third Nova Scotia album Memphis (Ikuisuus Records, 2008). Nova Scotia are an experimental noise band from New Zealand comprised of Rick Jensen, Dean Brown and Dick Whyte (also featuring a guest performance by Antony Milton on this recording). Click here to listen to excerpts from the album. Find out more about Nova Scotia.

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“‘Memphis’ is a consistently flowing top-shelf example of how electronic and acoustic sources work together in improvised music today. It’s nearly impossible to not mention the classic example of AMM’s pioneering work in this field or the more contemporary efforts of Evan Parker’s group settings, even if Jensen’s reed work owes more to someone like Jon Butcher. The interplay between Jensen’s multiphonics and ornamental work and the brass-playing on the opening track is almost Scelsi-like amidst the drones and looped sounds from Whyte’s guitar and the other subtle sonics. Some truly sublime and captivating music. “Rosetta Stone Paperweight” features more feedback and the sort of scraped sound aesthetic found on “AMMusic” circa 1969, but perhaps with a more sensitive set of ears. This is not improvised music of reckless abandon, but carefully crafted abstract soundscapes of the most deliberate nature. The dynamic interplay gets a bit sloppy in moments but really exposes how in touch these cats are with one another in the moment.” (Heathen Harvest)

“The recordings were done at 2 seperate gigs at Photospace Gallery in Wellington, NZ. I exhibited at the gallery twice and we began performing there quite often (the owner even played drums for my group The Rick Jensen Trio). Nova Scotia played a number of times there as the environment was particularly suited to us, outside was the main street in Wellington, where everyone would go drinking at night. It was all nightclubs and bars, buskers and drunk people. When we performed we’d open the windows and use any street sound that came through and integrate it into our performance. For the track that features Antony, we played a gig with him and then invited him to join us, it turned out to be an unusual song. All of the performances we did at Photospace had a particular feel to them, and we certainly developed our sound a lot with these gigs. There’s not a lot more to say about them, at this point we were using many homemade instruments, broken electronics, 4 tracks, and anything we had at hand. This album represents a highly experimental period for us and shows the way we were going at the time.” (Rick Jensen)

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“John Cage – 4’33” [May ’68 Comeback Special RECON]” (Video Art, 2010)

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

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Reconstruction of John Cage’s 4’33” using 68 YouTube videos of people performing the piece on a variety of instruments. Part of the ongoing RECON project. Many thanks to Rhizome.org and C-Monster for featuring this work recently.

“There is no such thing as an empty space or an empty time. There is always something to see, something to hear. In fact, try as we may to make a silence, we cannot.” (John Cage, Experimental Music)

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“MEND” (Tao Wells and Dick Whyte, Supercomposition, 2010)

Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

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The concept is simple, take two bands which are characterized as opposed (culturally, personally, ideologically) and superimpose a song from each band on top of one other (mending the rift). Concept developed by Tao Wells and myself one weekend in New Plymouth and eventually spawned my Britney Spears Best of Noise solo project.

These are not ‘remixes’, though we are interested in their relation to remixing. We have simply laid two songs on top of each other (a rhizome, a remedy) in the hope that there will be moments of connection between the layers. The points at which these two layers touch (caress) offer moments of “mending.” While mixing makes use of the cut, mending makes use of care.

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“Artdick News: John Cage RECON Goes Semi-Viral” (Rhizome, 2010)

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

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Exciting news! My video reconstruction John Cage – 4’33” [May ’68 Comeback Special RECON] was featured on the front page of Rhizome (one of the most well known digital art networking sites) after being posted on Mediateletipos. It went semi-viral and has since been posted on a number of blogs and was even twittered a few times. Since then the video has received more than 2000 views! Special thanks to Drawing Silence, who was the first person to re-blog this video, and PietMondriaan who also featured it on their art blog.

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“Britney Spears + The Dead C = HOT” (Rhimix, 2010)

Monday, September 20th, 2010

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Minimalist musical mashup superimposing The Dead C’s “Suffer Bomb Damage” over top of Britney Spears’ “Radar.” The Dead C (Bruce Russell, Michael Morley, Robbie Yeats) are a seminal free-noise band from New Zealand. Part of the ongoing Britney Spears Best of Noise project. Many thanks to Abulafia: Electronic Folk Music for featuring this on their blog. The first 8 tracks of this project were released on the concept album Britney Spears + Noise = HOT. Download the full album for free (in FLAC or high quality MP3) on my Bandcamp Page.

“That there is an area between other forms of music where all of the “rules” which hold them apart cease to apply. All musics bleed into this Empty Quater, some exist more within, and some more without, its bounds.” (Bruce Russell, Free Noise Manifesto)

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“Britney Spears + Pierre Schaeffer = HOT” (Rhimix, 2010)

Friday, October 1st, 2010

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Minimalist musical mashup superimposing Pierre Schaeffer’s avant-garde composition “Cinq Etudes De Bruits: Etude Violette” over top of Britney Spears’ “Toxic.” Schaeffer is a composer and musicologist who was instrumental in pioneering musique concrete as an art form. Part of the ongoing Britney Spears Best of Noise project. The first 8 tracks of this project were released on the concept album Britney Spears + Noise = HOT. Download the full album for free (in FLAC or high quality MP3) on my Bandcamp Page.

“So these were the three circumstances that compelled me to experiment in music: I was involved in music; I was working with turntables (then with tape-recorders); I was horrified by modern 12-tone music. I said to myself, ‘Maybe I can find something different… maybe salvation, liberation, is possible.’ Seeing that no-one knew what to do anymore with DoReMi, maybe we had to look outside that… Unfortunately it took me forty years to conclude that nothing is possible outside DoReMi… In other words, I wasted my life.” (Pierre Schaeffer)

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“Britney Spears + Sun Ra + John Cage = HOT” (Rhimix, 2010)

Thursday, October 7th, 2010

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The fourth in my series of Britney Spears experimental remixes, superimposing Sun Ra and John Cage (from the album “John Cage Meets Sun Ra”) over top of Spears’ “Piece of Me.” Sun Ra is a free jazz space traveller and John Cage is an avant-garde composer instrumental in developing the use of chance operations in experimental music. Part of the ongoing Britney Spears Best of Noise project. Many thanks to Path To Unknown Worlds and Swen’s Weblog for featuring this recently. The first 8 tracks of this project were released on the concept album Britney Spears + Noise = HOT. Download the full album for free (in FLAC or high quality MP3) on my Bandcamp Page.

“The first question I ask myself when something doesn’t seem to be beautiful is why do I think it’s not beautiful. And very shortly you discover that there is no reason.” (John Cage)

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“Britney Spears + Noise = HOT” (Concept Album, 2010)

Friday, October 29th, 2010

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Concept album mashing avant-garde music (Sun Ra, John Cage, The Dead C, Pierre Schaeffer, Arthur Doyle) with Britney Spears songs. Download the full album for free (in FLAC or high quality MP3) on my Bandcamp Page.

1ST EDITION: 20 copies with hand lettered covers were given away free at Frederick Sound and Light Exploration Society art fair on October 9th (also featuring The Unknown Rockstar, The DollPumice, Campbell Kneale, Matt Whitwell, Bryce Galloway, Drawing Silence and Claire Harris, among others). 2ND EDITION: 20 copies featuring the cover above were ‘sold’ for gold coin donation at the MyGalaxi art market on October 29th and 30th. 3RD EDITION: 10 copies were given away for free at Big Dick’s Best of YouTube screening at the NZ Film Archive. Subsequent editions have been produced for Wellington Zinefest and general distribution.

Part of the ongoing Britney Spears Best of Noise project. There is also now a torrent on Pirate Bay. Update: Volume 2 OUT NOW!

“These are not remixes, as such, though I am interested in their relation to remixing. All I have done is superimpose well known avant-garde musicians over top of Britney Spears songs in the hope that multiple points of connection might be established between the two layers. I call this a rhimix. Remixes are are based on the “cut” (melding several tracks together, producing one). Rhimixes are based on the “caress” (mending several tracks together, producing a multiplicity of points at which they touch). The remix = juxtacomposition (comprised of different samples). The rhimix = supercomposition (comprised of different speeds).”

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“Britney Spears + Yximalloo = HOT” (Mashup, 2010)

Sunday, January 9th, 2011

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Minimalist mashup superimposing Yximalloo’s “Why To Christmas” (from the album Fangs of Lucifer) over top of the Britney Spears song ‘3’. Yximalloo (a.k.a. Naofumi Ishimaru) is a Japanese experimental/noise/pop musician, best known for his collaborations with Jad Fair of Half Japanese. Download the full 8 track album for free (in FLAC or high quality MP3) from Bandcamp.

From the 8 track concept album Britney Spears + Noise = HOT Vol. 2 (mashing Britney Spears songs with noise and avant-garde musicians). Part of the ongoing Britney Spears Best of Noise project. If you enjoyed this you may also want to check out Britney Spears + Noise = HOT Vol. 1 (including The Dead C, William S. Burroughs, Arthur Doyle, Nam June Paik, Pierre Schaeffer and Sun Ra).

“The trouble with Japanese pop, Yximalloo says, is that Japanese are brainwashed by caucasian culture. In Japan, 98% of people are following trends and only 2% of people are setting them. He recently heard Pizzicato 5 for the first time, and looks disappointed when I tell him they’ve split up.” (read more)

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“Britney Spears + Henri Pousseur = HOT” (Mashup, 2010)

Monday, January 10th, 2011

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Minimalist mashup superimposing Henri Pousseur’s “Scambi” (Exchanges) over top of the Britney Spears song “If You Seek Amy.” Henri Pousseur was an experimental composer whose tape work “Scambi” was particularly unique, in that it uses what Pousseur called an ‘open form’, meaning that it is meant to be assembled and reassembled in infinite variations (prefiguring concepts like ‘open source’ and ‘creative commons’). For this reason multiple versions of “Scambi” exist (the version I have used was Pousseur’s 1957 mix).

From the 8 track concept album Britney Spears + Noise = HOT Vol. 2 (mashing Britney Spears songs with noise and avant-garde musicians). Listen or download the full album for free from Bandcamp. Part of the ongoing Britney Spears Best of Noise project. If you enjoyed this you may also want to check out Britney Spears + Noise = HOT Vol. 1 (including The Dead C, William S. Burroughs, Arthur Doyle, Nam June Paik, Pierre Schaeffer and Sun Ra).

“I think composition will not always be the production of closed and finished objects which one can buy and sell… We will have to think increasingly in a collective way… In fact this has always been the case.” (Henri Pousseur, read more)

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