Graham Dunning: Mechanical Techno Set

“IT’S LIKE A BADLY-OILED MACHINE, A MACHINE THAT IS ALMOST FALLING TO PIECES.”Graham Dunning

On March 4th in association with Hare & Hounds 10th anniversary series we bring you the ultimate alternative DJ night. With headliner Steve Davis, snooker champion turned Alt-DJ cult hero paired with live visuals from HelloCatFood and support from Graham Dunning with his Mechanical Techno Set, we’ve no doubt this avant-garde-discotheque will exercise your body and your brain.

Graham Dunning works with sound, processes and found objects visually drawing upon dirt, dust and decay, evoking notions of memory, collecting and archiving. Dunning’s work sonically remixes cultural off-cuts, often utilising the unwarranted noise inherent in vinyl and cassette playback.

A self-taught artist and musician, his work explores sound as texture, timbre and tactility, drawing on bedroom production, tinkering and recycling found objects.

Dunning’s background in experimental music informs his approach into whatever audio, visual, physical piece of art he is creating; experimentation and play being a main part of the process.

“My work explores time and commemoration: How people store their memories, in personal archives – photographs, audio journals, post-it notes – and what becomes of those archives. I find discarded objects interesting in themselves, for the stories that they suggest or that can be read into them. Collecting things has always held a fascination for me, both to do myself and to look at the way others do it.”

This enthusiasm in ‘the way others do it’ is probably what makes this artist such an avid collaborator. From musicians, to producers, to multi-disciplsinerary art groups such as A.A.S – Dunning, in his art-form fluidity, has created a patchwork quilt-esque archive: offering something for all kinds of art-appreciators.

Flick through his website [here]

Recently Dunning’s performance project Mechanical Techno – a teetering stack of collaged vinyl interspersed with physical interventions and extended phonograph needles – has drawn accolades from sound art and music festival scenes.

The installation of the Mechanical Techno set is an incredible thing to watch come to life; Graham is gradually joined on stage by some abstract lo-fi R2D2 sound machine, fully responsive but slightly out of whack, with it’s own chaotic wit. 

Dunning speaks fondly of Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, who referred to dub as “the ghost in me coming out” and with his own brand of techno he certainly unleashes a whole new entity into the a-typical DJ night.

For an in depth interview with Graham from ATTN Magazine click [here]

This is set to be an unmissable, mind bending night of dance. For more info. click on the Facebook event page [here].

[TICKETS ON SALE HERE]

AND DON’T MISS OUR EXCLUSIVE OFFER OF 4 FOR £40Limited online only so get in quick!

 

 

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Colin Stetson: Musical Athlete

‘…feels like music I’ve been subconsciously craving without even knowing it exists.’ – PITCHFORK

Colin Stetson was born and raised in Ann Arbor and spent a decade in San Francisco and Brooklyn honing his formidable talents as a horn player eventually settling in Montreal in 2007.

From early beginnings in experimental jazz group Transmission Trio:

 

Stetson has gone on to collaborate with artists such as Tom Waits, Arcade  Fire,  Bon  Iver,  TV  On  The  Radio,  Feist,  Laurie  Anderson,  Lou  Reed,  Bill  Laswell,  Evan Parker,  The  Chemical  Brothers,  Animal  Collective,  Hamid  Drake,  LCD  Soundsystem,  The  National, Angelique Kidjo, Fink, and David Gilmore – to name but a few.

But above all, he is a solo artist in his own right, who has crafted a unique sonic & visual experience through avant garde and extended techniques, equipped with an eclectic musical palate.

On his solo work, The Quietus says Colin ‘has totally eclipsed the flare of these heavyweights with a series of brutalist yet ambitious and exhilarating records’. He produces enigmatic, physical, strenuous music which courses and caterwauls through a reminiscence of dark jazz, post-rock and industrial electronica.

Colin has perfected the technique of circular breathing and with his live shows, literally ties himself to the grizzly beast; as the performer and instrument grapple together in a hypnotic whirl they almost blur into one.

I guess where it started to get interesting for me was when I realised you didn’t have to only learn from or mimic other players of your chosen instrument, regardless of what it might be. So much more can be gleaned if you do the same thing with other instruments and different sound sources entirely.”– Colin Stetson

For an fascinating interview with Stetson about Mastering the Flow click [here]

Considered a prodigy in his teens, Colin was thrust in to the limelight; in freshman year he was instantly playing in a sax quartet and the main symphonic band whilst majoring in visual art. He speaks of how during this time ‘the challenge to live up to the hype is quite real.’ and as a result he has maintained a solid work ethic throughout his life, ‘it was just an all-intensive and personally challenging regimen, which pretty much sets you up for a lifetime of living that way.’.

When it comes to mastering an instrument in the way Colin has, many may envisage a vitamin D deficient recluse locked away in a dark room running scales until their fingers drop off. Practice is of course a huge factor but also the physical demands of performing in this way requires peak fitness – and Colin is something of a musical athlete.

Natural ability, practice, eclectic palate, work ethic and artistic collaboration are what contribute to creating this intriguing, well rounded musician but something which ties this all together beautifully is the immediate emotivity you hear when you put on a Colin Stetson record or watch him perform.

It was his long standing dream to work with musical hero Tom Waits. One hazy early morning in his San Fransisco home at the age of 23 the phone rings, Colin drearily answers and it’s Tom Waits on the line. He’s got his number through a mutual friend, bassist Matthew Sperry. This friend had changed the course of his life. For the next year and a half Colin and Matthew played regularly in Tom Waits’ band until one day, Colin received another life-altering phone call saying Matthew had been hit by a car on his way to work and had been killed, leaving behind a wife and 2 year old daughter. The much-loved Matthew’s untimely death had a profound effect on Stetson as he states:

“I tell the first part of the story to set up the second part of the story – what we think is all important and life-altering events when we’re young, they pale in comparison to the things that actually do touch us on a real meaningful level and change us in ways that I think are long lasting and are actually what we should be looking for in our lives.”

Such sentiments and sensitivity can certainly be heard in Colin’s rich, all encompassing sound.

Listen and watch his most recent release from the forthcoming album ‘All this I do for Glory’

Out April 28th 2017

[pre-order here]

 

TICKETS ON SALE NOW!

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Arbouretum: Mystical Landscapes

About to release their 6th studio album ‘Song of the Rose’, the prolific Arbouretum continue to wonder on through the wilderness of rock. Since their first release in 2004 the band have been perfecting their craft of storytelling in song, both lyrically and sonically.

Signed to the fiercely independent label Thrill Jockey records, Arbouretum have been called “the best of the millennial classic rock bands, a guitar-fuzzed powerhouse.” Hailing from Baltimore US, the band travels through the ever changing landscape of alt-rock with effortless motion. From brooding Americana, to dark folk, sludge, doom, psych-rock and a fleck of prog, the expanding structures lead us from the mystical, poetic lyrics of David Heumann, told over grinding grungy riffs, into guitar solos which wind into improvisations between a group of respectful players painting a vivid sonic picture in homage to their predecessors.

THE QUIETUS described 2013’s album ‘Coming out of the Fog’ as ‘..the album Neil Young and Crazy Horse should have delivered instead of the disappointing Psychedelic Pill.’

Arbouretum’s lyrics explore elements of philosophy, mysticism, redemption, and the implications of human “progress.”

“Heumann is the kind of songwriter who, when he slips in a lyric about a tree or a bird or a running river, seems to have actually observed such objects, not just read about them in books. There’s something elemental about his fuzzed-drenched, Americana-infused anthems, something both grounded and deeply mystical.”- Jennifer Kelly, Pop Matters

2011’s album The Gathering was part inspired by the ‘The Red Book’ written by philosopher Jung in 1913 and throughout the course of his writings Heumann has continued to muse over the bigger questions whilst meandering through picturesque landscapes which his Instagram mostly reveals.

“If you look at creative people throughout history, one thing that many of them have in common is going on walks. I like to put myself in that company. I prefer the scenery of the natural world than that of the human-made world. So, in that sense, it does inform my writing, though not in a literal way.” – David Heumann

From their forthcoming release, titular track “Song of the Rose” completes a trilogy of songs from past records, calling back to “Song of the Nile” and “Song of the Pearl,” which have their roots in examining Taoist and Gnostic mythic traditions. Fittingly, “Rose” is also a nod to Heumann’s ancestor Richard Lovelace, a 17th century poet who penned “The Rose.”

The glimpses you can hear of the forthcoming album sound like a scrap book of all the best tales the band have delivered so far on their 5 previous albums, woven together with a new, contemporary finesse, having recorded for the first time with Kyle Spence at his studios in Athens, GA (Kurt Vile, Luke Roberts, Harvey Milk).

Click [here] for a more in depth interview on the new release.

So, Supersonic Festival goers, come and venture through the mystic landscapes of Arbouretum this June – we know you’re bound to get lost!

Preview full track ‘Fall From an Eyrie’ off their forthcoming album, ‘Song of the Rose’


TICKETS ON SALE NOW! 

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Listen back to The Supersonic Take-over Show

On Friday night we hosted our first Supersonic Take-over Show on Brum Radio.

Over 2 hours we delved in to the first 10 acts to be announced for this year’s festival. Listening to tunes from the artists, their influences and interesting sound bites & interviews.

This is SURE to get you in the mood for our festival this June!

Big thanks to Brum Radio for hosting: www.brumradio.com

REMEMBER, tickets on sale NOW!

AND we have a special group ticket deal on with 5 weekend tickets for the price of 4 – so round up the troops!

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Supersonic Take Over Show on Brum Radio

Tonight, at 10pm, listen LIVE to Brum Radio for the Supersonic Take Over Show.

For two hours we explore the first 10 acts to be announced for this year’s festival. We play tunes from the artists, listen to their influences and inter-splice interesting sound bites and interviews we’ve discovered along the way.

You can listen along [here]

Or listen back on [mixcloud] or [soundcloud]

TICKETS ON SALE NOW!

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Associate Producer – Supersonic Festival 2017


Masaki Batoh at Bring to Light

Job Description: Associate Producer – Supersonic Festival 2017

Fee: £3,200 35 days + 5 flexi days freelance contract (40 days max)

  • 2 days per week March – May
  • 3 days per week May – July to include a full working week 12-18 June

Term: 21 Mar – 7 Jul 2017

The Associate Producer will work closely with the Executive producer to support the delivery of key aspects of the festival relating to workshops, talks and the Supersonic Marketplace – a space for independent distributors, record labels, poster artists and others to sell their wares and network with each other. They will also play a role in managing and delivering Supersonic’s Kids Gig – created for children under seven, the aim of our Kids Gigs are to introduce children to experimental music at an early age, nurturing the audiences of the future.

This post is offered as a fixed term freelance contract until July 2017. The fee will be £3,200 inclusive of VAT. The starting date is Tuesday 21 March 2017.

 

Schedule: 35 days plus 5 flexi-days (40 days max) until 7 July 2017

  • 2 days per week March – May
  • 3 days per week May – July to include a full working week 12 – 18 June

 

This role will be based at the Capsule office in Birmingham – Unit 316, The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Birmingham, B9 4AA. The role is not suitable for remote working.

 

To apply for this post please read our Associate Producer Application Pack February 2017 and then send:

 

Deadline Thursday 9 March, 6pmSend by email with subject header “Associate Producer” to Felicity Alwell, Executive Producer, info@capsule.org.uk

 

BACKGROUND
Named by Stuart Maconie, BBC 6 Music as ‘the UK’s premier experimental music festival”, listed No.2 in The Times guide to the 50 best events of the summer (2015) and one of the 10 best European festivals by Momondo (2015). Since 2003, it has grown in scale and ambition becoming the UK’s go-to event for experimental, collaborative and otherwise out of the box musical thinking. Combining today’s burgeoning talent with legendary, one-of-a-kind performances, it creates a sense of spectacle that electrifies Birmingham.

The successful candidate will be an organised and proactive individual. They will work closely with the executive producer and the rest of the festival team to ensure the smooth delivery of this flagship festival event. This is an exciting role for an up and coming producer who wants to mark their mark and develop their career in festivals, music and live events.

 

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Call out for workshop proposals


Stephen Fowler wildman life drawing workshop

The UK’s premier experimental music and arts event, Supersonic Festival 2017, returns this June from the 16th to the 18th and we’re on the hunt for some creative minds to bring us unusual, imaginative and engaging new workshops as part of our festival weekend.

For facilitating a workshop you will be given a budget of up to £150 and 2 weekend tickets to the festival.

From high-brow to indulgent fun: we want you to craft something extraordinary so we can offer a variety of inclusive workshops for our curious audience.

Whether you’re flying solo, a group or an organisation, we want to hear ideas that embrace our passion for collaboration between both artists and audience alike, in a bid to reveal the otherwise indescribable connections between art forms and champion the unclassifiable.

So send us your proposal!

Deadline for Applications: 20 March 2017

The successful proposals will be from contributors who present an innovative idea, show a clear understanding of all-things-Supersonic; a festival which celebrates the expressive, challenging and generally out-there whilst remaining inclusive and engaging to varied audiences.

 

If you are interested in contributing, please complete this form Workshop Proposal Form and email to info@capsule.org.uk with ‘Workshop Proposal’ in the subject line.

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Steve Davis: Cued Up

 

(photo credit: Matt Bohill)

‘Steve Davis makes the point that if anyone ever tried to push him off balance, he would waver not to the left, right or backwards, but only forwards.’

– Steve Davis on snooker stance at http://www.fcsnooker.co.uk/

Steve Davis – the legendary sporting phenomenon from the 80s who took snooker to new heights and as presenter of The Interesting Alternative Show on Phoenix FM brought prog and jazz oddities to his cult audience, now turns his hands to the decks. A real game changer: a real forward thinker.

Listen back to the archive of The Interesting Alternative Show:

We at Supersonic began to wonder about the science, the physics behind being both snooker champion and superstar DJ.

An insightful article on snooker technique at http://www.fcsnooker.co.uk/ assists with this comparison:

‘Players should not be bound by principles generally laid down in previous books. If need be, they should experiment and find out if they can achieve their objectives in other ways.

“What suits one player will not automatically suit another”.

Discover the stance that works best for you and do not copy others. Try and focus on what is happening on top of the table and not what is happening beneath.’

From snooker, to turn, the table is a place Steve Davis is well on top of. He is certainly not bound by previously laid principles and experiments with an atypical approach to bringing the party.

It’s a hobby which he claims has spun out of control. His notorious 2016 Glastonbury set at the 500 capacity Stonebridge bar was mobbed by a curious turned shocked and enthralled crowd. With a packed out DJ diary since, Steve has continued to woo party goers from Bluedot to Bloc Festival. Drawing from an eclectic array of influences: Magma, Caravan, Oscar Perry, Soft Machine and Gong to name but a few – Steve spins together a unique set in his quest to deliver the music he loves to lovers of the party.

For an article on the 10 records that changed Steve’s life, click [here]

According to http://snookerdelight.com, here are the steps towards taking the perfect snooker shot:

[or as a DJ: the perfect drop]

(we’re really enjoying this metaphor)

Step 1: Determine where you want the cue ball to go

Step 2: Determine where the cue ball will strike the object ball [audience]

Step 3: Determine how to strike the cue ball – pace and position [pretty clear]

Step 4: Stand behind the intended line of the cue ball (NOTE: this is where a lot of amateur players get into trouble) [DJ booth]

Step 5: Walk into the shot in a specific consistent way [finger point]

Step 6: Feather and pause as needed […]

Step 7: Strike the cue ball [DROP]

OK I think we’ve laboured the point long enough. This is going to be a championship worthy set.

Get your tickets for Steve Davis, in association with The Hare & Hounds 10th Anniversary Series, on sale NOW at:

https://www.skiddle.com/whats-on/Birmingham/Hare-And-Hounds/Super-Sonic-Festival-Presents-Steve-Davis-(DJ-Set)/12910549/

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