Artspace's International New Music Festival
PAN SONIC - FINLAND
MAKIGAMI KOICHI - JAPAN
JON ROSE - AUSTRALIA
TONY BUCK - BERLIN
DAVID WATSON - NEW YORK
GALATOS, AUCKLAND, 4-6 MARCH 2001
ADAM GALLERY, WELLINGTON, 7-8 MARCH 2001
"Living in New York and travelling a lot, I'm always seeing great musicians and amazing performances and thinking 'I wish this could happen in New Zealand', or 'I wish so'n'so back home could be part of this'. I guess this is my chance to do something about it. All the people we have coming are brilliant, idiosyncratic specialists. They've followed their muse all the way, rather than getting off at the second or third stop. Exposure to this quality of work is rare for New Zealanders. In fact it's pretty rare outside of New York and the larger European cities unfortunately. It's not just the quality, there's lots of 'quality' music around. But, with these people, what stands out is their no-compromise attitude." - David Watson, curator, Alt.Music.
Named after the electronics giant, PAN SONIC, the Finnish duo of Mika Vainio and Ilpo Väisänen mix ultra-minimal electronic fuzz with brainmelting distortion. They represent a new wave of new music in Europe. Pan sonic have pioneered an aesthetic of minimalist rhythmic explorations with a highly developed sonic palette using specially constructed oscillators and synthesisers. They cite as influences the legendary proto-techno duo Suicide, industrial pioneers Throbbing Gristle and Einstürzende Neubauten, the French 'musique concrète' composer Pierre Henry and the eccentric cult rockabilly musician Hasil Adkins. Their sound is increasingly moving away from the regular 4-4 techno, and is now inspired by old Jamaican dub reggae and ska. They are also informed by rockabilly, which they give a late 1970s Eno-ish twist (they have been dubbed 'horsemeat rockabilly'), and Japanese noise (they recently gigged with Yamatsuka Eye of The Boredoms). Their visit coincides with the release of their fourth album Aaltopiri. Mika and Ilpo are also established solo artists. Both contributed solo EPs to Carsten Nicolai's 20' to 2000 series which was awarded the grand prix at Linz's Ars Electronica 2000 this year. [www.sci.fi/~phinnweb/panasonic]
MAKIGAMI KOICHI is an accomplished film and stage actor as well as an bizarre, often hilarious improvising vocal-acrobat. An early member of Ground Zero, he is best known as vocalist for Hikashu, one of Japan's longest-running underground groups. As Hikashu evolved from electronic pop into a fusion of world music, improv and noise, Koichi began collaborating with John Zorn, who produced the all-star Makigami solo record Koroshi No Blues. Makigami also performed with Derek Bailey and Yamatsuka Eye, and was the organiser of Zorn's monthly Tokyo-based improvisational forum Cobra. His first album for solo voice, Kuchinoha, was released in 1995. His recent CD Electric Eel, a collaboration with Swiss jaw harp virtuoso Anton Bruhin, shows evidence of Makigami's study with Mongolian throat singing masters. Though astute in employing technology, his performance is primarily based on his body and his voice. Koichi plays with and subverts Orientalist stereotypes, taking his own culture to task through comedic exaggeration. A staple on television talk shows, Makigami is a celebrity in Japan; he defies the traditional position of experimental artist. [www.makigami.com/index-e.html]
Throughout the 1970s, in England then Australia, violinist Jon Rose worked in a bewildering variety of music genres, from sitar to country and western; from new music composition, to commercial studio session-work; from big band serial composition to sound installation. He became the central figure in the development of free improvisation in Australia. In 1986, he moved to Berlin in order to realise his on-going project, The Relative Violin. He has made deconstructed violin instruments including the legendary double-piston, triple-neck wheeling violin, and giant bowed instruments up to 15 metres in length. Rose has appeared on over 50 records and CDs and worked with many of the innovators in contemporary music including Derek Bailey, Fred Frith, Shelley Hirsch, Toshinori Kondo and Alvin Curran. In 1989, he directed the first Relative Violin Festival with violinists from around the world. He is currently performing The Chaotic Violin, for violin and interactive software. Current projects include the interactive badminton game Perks, based on the musical innovations and perversions of Australian freak composer Percy Grainger. (www.euronet.nl/users/jrviolin/indexnext.html)
Australian drummer TONY BUCK is known as leader of hardcore improvisation band Peril and as a member of the trio The Necks. Graduating from the Sydney Conservatorium, Buck spent his early musical life experimenting with rock and jazz. He did all kinds of work, performing with visiting American jazz stars, appearing on TV with leading pop bands, and mixing noise styles in underground clubs. Since 1990 he has concentrated on personal projects. After a year in Japan, where he formed Peril with Otomo Yoshihide and Kato Hideki, Buck moved to Europe and became deeply involved in the European music scene. Now he is focussing on the integration of sampling electronics and percussion within an improvising context. He has developed a personal virtual MIDI controlling instrument at Steim in Amsterdam, which he often uses in solo performances. Buck has recorded over 80 of his own compositions and composed pieces for theatre and dance. His music has featured in several films, including The Necks' soundtrack for the Australian movie The Boys. [www.thenecks.com]
DAVID WATSON started as a guitarist and improviser in the early 1980s in Wellington. He organised three national festivals of experimental music and was a member of Braille recording collective and the Primitive Art Group (1981-6). He moved to New York in 1987, and has performed and recorded with Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo and Thurston Moore, his group Endgame (which includes Philip Glass' percussionists Jim Pugliese and Christine Bard), John Zorn, Ikue Mori, Shelley Hirsch, Mark Stewart (from Paul Simon's and Steve Riech's ensembles), John Cage collaborator Chris Mann, Christian Marclay and others. A regular at The Knitting Factory and Tonic, he's also played Experimental Intermedia, Merkin Hall, PS1, Roulette, Greenwich House, The Cooler and CBGB's. Playing bagpipes since the mid 1980s, Watson has set out to take this typecast instrument beyond conventional boundaries. John Zorn calls his new bagpipe CD Skirl 'the great bagpipe record from the downtown scene'.
Germany's FLORIAN HECKER is the enfant terrible of the audio file and boy genius of Vienna's Mego clan. The world's hippest laptop brigade, Mego are notorious for their pranksterism. Their acts include Fennesz, Pita and Farmers Manual. Influenced by computer linguistics as well as his autodidact's view of contemporary music, Hecker's albums have helped redefine the contemporary sound culture by creating perverse relationships between volume and silence, articulating a new visions of sonic beauty in the process. As a member of the Austrian Mego collective, he was awarded a Prix Ars Electronica Award of Distinction for Digital Musics in 1999.
GALATOS, GALATOS STREET, 4-6 MARCH 2001
Sunday $20 / Monday $15 / Tuesday $15 / Concession $30
SUNDAY 4 MARCH
ENTREE: DAVID WATSON + JON ROSE + FLORIAN HECKER + JASON SMITH
MAIN: PAN SONIC
DESSERT: TONY BUCK + MAKAGAMI KOICHI
MONDAY 5 MARCH
MAIN: DAVID WATSON AND TONY BUCK
DESSERT: FLORIAN HECKER / EVERYBODY
TUESDAY 6 MARCH
MAIN: MAKIGAMI KOICHI / THE JOHN ROSE EXPERIENCE
DESSERT : FLORIAN HECKER / EVERYBODY
ADAM ART GALLERY, 7-8 MARCH, 2001
$12 / 10 per night
FIRST COURSE: MAKIGAMI KOICHI
SECOND COURSE: PETER DALY + JON ROSE + ANTHONY DONALDSON
FIRST COURSE: JON ROSE + DAVID WATSON
SECOND COURSE: MAKIGAMI KOICHI + DAVID DONALDSON + DAVID LONG
ARTSPACE IN MARCH / APRIL 2001
Alt.Music: Artspace's New Music Mini-Festival, with David Watson, Makigami Koichi, Pan sonic, Jon Rose, Tony Buck and Florian Hecker. Galatos, Auckland 4-6 March 2001; and Adam Gallery, Wellington, 7-8 March. Auckland tickets from Beautiful Music, $25 / $20 / $30. With thanks to Asia 2000 and the Goethe Institut.
Bright Paradise at Artspace, featuring a major installation by Paul Morrison, plus work by Paul Seitsema, Tony De Lautour and Ian McDonald, Saturday 3 March at 4pm. Bright Paradise is a joint project with Auckland Art Gallery and the University of Auckland, with support from Creative New Zealand, the Chartwell Trust, the Sue Fisher Art Trust, IFA, the British Council, City Life and Aalto Colour. Until 28 April. Events: Saturday 17 March at noon, Floor Talk, curator Allan Smith, and artists Caroline Rothwell and John Reynolds respond to Paul Morrison's installation; Saturday 24 March at noon, Paradise Debriefing, Wystan Curnow leads a panel discussion on the show and the future of the Auckland Triennial; Saturday 31 March from noon, Waltzing the Feral, a John Lyall performance.
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