AMN Reviews: John Wiese – Escaped Language (2017; Gilgongo Records)

John Wiese is a polymath of sorts: composer, musician, publisher, and graphic artist, among other things. On this EP-length single-track recording, released in September, Wiese experiments in musique concrete.

The first four minutes of Escaped Language offer synth drones, but then the electroacoustic elements enter and take hold. As with many albums of this rough genre, it is hard to determine the sources of the various sounds. Scraping metal, harsh walls of noise, distorted synth waves, fractured elements, and percussive samples combine to form a chaotic mix. There is no discernable melody, harmony, or rhythm – instead, the composition is of an architectural nature, with an array of building blocks combined to form twisted structures. But perhaps just as important is how Wiese distributes these sounds across the left and right channels. At any point in time, each has its own distinct set of elements, though some move and warp in between the channels. These pieces evolve into a crescendo that abruptly ends around the 19-minute mark.

Escaped Language was recorded live during Ina/GRM’s 2016 Présences Électronique Festival in Paris, and is a fitting addition to that institution’s oeuvre.

Note: Wiese will be performing tonight (November 18, 2017) in Chicago. Reservations are free.

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Chicago Scene: November 18-21, 2017

This is a weekly overview live avant performances in the Chicago area. Contact us if you’d like your shows listed.

Saturday, November 18th 2017

8:00PM at Graham Foundation (Madlener House), 4 W Burton Pl (Free, RSVP)
John Wiese

Sunday, November 19th 2017

8:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western ($10-$5)
The Schönberg Project
Kayleigh Butcher, Christopher Narloch

9:00PM at the Hungry Brain, 2319 W Belmont ($10 suggested donation) (wheelchair-accessible)
Chris Dammann’s Restroy, with James Davis, Paul Giallorenzo, Avreeayl Ra

Monday, November 20th 2017

9:00PM at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W Belmont, 773.281.4444 (wheelchair-accessible)
Extraordinary Popular Delusions : Jim Baker, Mars Williams, Brian Sandstrom, Steve Hunt

9:00PM at Elastic, 3429 W Diversey, #208, 773.772.3616 ($10)
Clif Wallace Trio with Vinnie Roofe, Erik Hunter
Dan Pierson, Mike Harmon, Avreeayl Ra

Tuesday, November 21st 2017

9:00PM at the Hideout, 1354 W Wabansia, 773.227.4433 ($10)
Jim Baker and Michael Zerang – Celebrating 35 Years
Jim Baker, Michael Zerang, Aaron Zarzutzki, Carol Genetti

For more information, such as directions, as well as upcoming performances, see:

http://now-is.org/, http://www.ratchetmusic.com, http://www.mcachicago.org, http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/dca/supp_info/chicago_culturalcenterschedule.html, http://www.skylarkchicago.com, http://www.hideoutchicago.com, http://www.elasticrevolution.com, http://www.myopicbookstore.com/music.html, http://www.lampo.org, http://dalniente.com, http://iceorg.org/events/category/chicago, http://www.emptybottle.com/

Second Inversion Reviews

Via Second Inversion.

Astor Piazzolla: “Fuga y Misterio” from María de Buenos Aires (Steinway & Sons)
Pablo Ziegler & Christopher O’Riley, pianos

Jenni Brandon: Pleistocene Epoch: The Great Ice Age (Jenni Brandon)
Jennifer Stevenson, bass clarinet

David Lang: Child: I. “Stick Figure” (Cantaloupe Music)
Sentieri Selvaggi

Conlon Nancarrow: Four Player Piano Studies (Cantaloupe Music)
(arr. Evan Ziporyn) Bang on a Can All-Stars

The Perfect Nothing Catalog by Conrad Winslow

Harry Partch: Delusion of the Fury (Innova Recordings)

Arnold Schoenberg: Pierrot Lunaire (Hungaroton Records)
Erika Sziklay, soprano; András Mihály, conductor; Budapest Chamber Ensemble

Adrian Lane: “Playing with Ghosts” (Preserved Sound)

Michael Daugherty: Dead Elvis (CCn’C Records)
Martin Kuuskmann, bassoon; Absolute Ensemble

Julia Wolfe: Cruel Sister (Cantaloupe Music)
Ensemble Resonanz

Robert Honstein: Night Scenes from the Ospedale (Soundspells Productions)
The Sebastians

Downtown Music Gallery Newsletter

Albert Ayler

Via Downtown Music Gallery.

John Zorn’s Hermetic Organ Vol 5! Connie Converse Comp: Laurie Anderson / Mike Patton / Mary Halvorson & Jessica Pavone..! Paal Nilssen-Love Large Unit & Duo: Frode Gjerstad! Jurg Frey 5 CD Set! Julius Eastman! John Butcher & Akio Suzuki!

Robert Dick / Uli Johannes Kieckbusch / Alfred Zimmerlin! Zero Point: Daniel Carter/Marius Duboule/Michael Bates/Deric Dickens! Keiji Haino / Jim O’Rourke / Oren Ambarchi LP! Todd Capp’s Mystery Train!

Plus Historic Music from Charles Mingus Sextet 1964! Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band! Cluster! John Cage 3 CD Set Edition RZ! Harry Bertoia CD/DVD! Pascal Comelade! Albert Ayler on LP’s! Serge Gainsbourg & Jean-Claude Vannier! And Even More..!

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THE DMG 26TH ANNIVERSARY SERIES OF SONIC CELEBRATIONS Continue with:

Sunday, November 19th:
6pm: TODD CAPP / SYLVAIN KASSAP / GUILLERMO GREGORIO / PATRICK HOLMES / MICHAEL LYTLE Clarinet Choir
7pm: ANDY HAAS and DON FIORINO – Sax/Electronics and Guitar

Sunday, November 26th:
6pm: FRANCOIS GRILLOT / RICH ROSENTHAL / LEONID GALAGANOV – ContraBass/Guitar/Drums
7pm: VIV CORRINGHAM and GLEN HALL – Experimental Vocals and Multi-Instruments

Sunday, December 3rd:
6pm: ANDERS NILSSON / HAMPUS OHMAN-FROLUND / SAM KULIK Scandinavian Guitar & Drums Trombone
7pm: AARON NOVIK / PATRICK HOLMES / THOMAS HEBERER – Clarinet / B-flat Clarinet / Trumpet

Rare Monday, December 4th Event:
6pm: NH / MM / GERALD CLEAVER Trio
7pm: CHRIS PITSIOKOS – Solo Alto Sax!

Sunday, December 10th:
6pm: DISSIPATED FACE: DANIEL CARTER / KURT RALSKE / STEPHEN POPKIN /
MICHAEL LUBLIN / WILL DAHL / BILL MILKOWSKI
7pm: RAS MOSHE /KYOKO KITAMURA / ANDERS NILSSON

Sunday, December 17th:
6pm: ATTRACTIVE NUISANCE: CRAIG FLANAGIN & NORMANDY SHERWOOD: Modular Electronics
7pm: PRAIRIE MUFFIN: FUNG CHERN HWEI – Solo Violin!

Morton Subotnick Interview

Via Art + Music + Technology Podcast.

Personal heroes. This is a very personal subject for most people, because our choice of heroes says a lot about us. My reverence for Morton’s work has a lot to do with how it changed my ears – and therefore my life.

Being introduced to Silver Apples allowed me to think of music as a less discrete, more fluid, material. Don’t need to limit yourself to standard instruments focused on verses and choruses; you can choose to use electrons to develop phrases, premonitions, echoes and silence instead. I was never able to think of (or hear) music the same way again.

In this chat, Morton and I talk about his current work, the events that got him to think about electronic music, and how he came to revisit the use of the Buchla modular system. We also talk a little bit about his upcoming book project, and the documentary that is being made about him. But it was a relaxed and enjoyable chat – appropriate for this highlight of my podcast: Number 200.