By now you’ve probably heard all about our Kids Gigs, a series of concerts designed to introduce your young ones to the power and beauty of live music in a safe, child friendly environment (if not, where have you been?). This year we’re proud to present the Flower-Corsano Duo on Saturday 20th, and Islaja on Sunday 21st, but it’s not just art of the musical variety that we’re offering to your kids this year. The fantastic visual arts collective Juneau Projects will be offering a 20 minute animation workshop at both gigs, with the aim of gently introducing your child to the art of creating moving pictures. Using coloured lights and a series of basic images, your children will be encouraged to bring these pictures to life before letting their hair down for the following musical treat.
This combination of visual arts and experimental music is the perfect gift for a precocious child (ideally under the age of 7), and this is a great opportunity to share an artistic experience with your young ones. There are barely any tickets left for Flower-Corsano Duo, but we still have plenty for Islaja; spaces are limited however, so book now to avoid dissapointment!
Tickets cost £10 (parent and child) or £12.50 (parent and two children), and this includes both the gig and the workshop.
The Quietus recently spoke with Sir Richard Bishop about the new Rangda album, his decision to stream all his solo albums for free and of course, his upcoming Supersonic experience. Richard’s live performances are never less than incredible, and it sounds as though this is a musician who is truly firing on all cylinders at the moment –
[Rangda has] certainly become more confident working together since the first record came out. That only happens over time. You have to remember, the first time the three of us actually played music together was two days before the recording of False Flag, so we didn’t have much of a chance to get to know each other musically on a direct experiential level. That came later when we began touring, working things out on the battlefield, in the trenches, so to speak. But now, I know we’re capable of doing anything we want in a musical sense. It’s just up to us to determine what that will be.
You can read the entire interview here, and you can watch both Sir Richard Bishop and rangda perform at this year’s Supersonic festival on Saturday 20th October.
Six Organs Of Admittance‘s Ben Chasny is an artist as prolific as he is chameleonic, with his recorded output ranging from sunny, free flowing folk to shimmering dronescapes and scorching elongated jams. You can never be completely sure what Chasny has in store for you when it comes to the band’s live performances, but the news that he will be accompanied for his Supersonc set by his former Comets On Fire band mates, Ben Flashman and Utrillo Kushner, may indicate that this could be one of his more intensive, psych-rock oriented sets. A recent review of this lineup in the LA Times described their set as thus:
Throughout the night, bassist Ben Flashman and drummer Utrillo Kushner laid down syrupy Post-Black Sabbath structures over which Chasny and rhythm guitarist Noel Von Harmonson roamed, locking into a groove for chunks of songs before loosely and gracefully turning themselves over to instrumental exploration, usually focused on Chasny’s solos.
Speaking to the Quietus, Chasny explained the reasoning for reunited with Flashman and Kushner:
I think the key energy was just getting back together with a group of friends that hadn’t all played music together in quite some time. The fact that we were all in Comets is sort of secondary to the fact that we have all played music for a long time and toured hard and knew each other pretty well sonically. It’s definitely not a Comets reunion. I mean, I don’t really think we’ve ever broken up. There has never been a point where Comets said, “We are done.” We’ve just been concentrating on other things for a while.
Chasny fans are spoilt for choice this year, as the guitarist will also be performing as part of experimental supergroup Rangda alongside Sir Richard Bishop and Chris Corsano. In the same interview, Chasny mentioned the different musical chemistries between each different group:
After playing together in Rangda I think we have a closer musical relationship now. It’s not so much a something that can be exactly pinned down as it is a more subconscious way of acting and reacting with each other. The same goes for the guys in Comets. I think as any group of people play music with each other they start to understand the space that they operate in more and more in relationship to each other.
Supersonic’s gigs for kids series returns this year in style, with some of the festival’s finest performing artists taking the time to play their big sounds for little people. Ideally suited for children under 7, this is a great way to introduce your children to the wonders of experimental audio, and a fantastic opportunity to show them the power and beauty of live music in a safe, child friendly environment.
First up, the Flower/Corsano Duo will be providing a psychedelic, free-flowing voyage for your young ones to embark upon. Taking place on the Saturday at 1.30pm in the Custard Factory’s Old Library, these two fine musicians will create a warm and inviting (yet distinctly avant-garde) soundscape that can’t fail to capture the attentions of listeners both young and old. Chris Corsano is a bona fide percussive virtuoso, whose energetic and unconventional drumming is sure to get your kids dancing, whilst Mick Flower will be manning the strings to provide some expansive textural accompaniment.
“I once played for a classroom full of 5 year olds and they all immediately got up and danced. That was a reaction I’d never seen before and I loved it” says Chris of his decision to play this special pre-school set. “I’d imagine that it’ll be quieter [than our other set at the festival] since little ears are sensitive to loud sounds. What we do is always improvised, and it seems like a great chance to play off the energy of an audience of kids and see where things go from there.” Playing to a room of infants is evidently a very different proposition to playing for an adult (or even adolescent) audience, forcing the musician to find new ways to perform their craft. “It’ll be a challenge to keep shorter attention spans engaged throughout the set” Chris muses, “and I wonder if it’ll be tough to keep kids focused when the music doesn’t have vocals. But I hope they get into it in the totally unselfconscious way that kids do.” It’s a pleasing thought that many of the children in attendance may look back fondly at this gig and cherish Corsano’s frantic drumming as their first musical memory. “I remember listening to LPs” says Chris, reminiscing on his earliest encounters with music. “The two that stick out the most in my memory are Devo’s ‘Freedom of Choice’ and a record of Haunted House sound effects.”
So if you’d like to share a very special musical memory with your children, bring them down to witness Chris and Mick’s adventurous sounds first-hand on Saturday 20th October. Tickets cost £10 (parent and child) or £12.50 (parent and two children), and the gig will also include an animation workshop by artist duo Juneau Projects. And if your kids can’t seem to get enough experimental music, you can also take them to see daring Finnish folk artist Islaja the next day!
We’re extremely excited to welcome the multi-faceted psychedelic improv monster known as Rangda to the stage. Taking its name from an Indonesian child-eating demon queen, this experimental unit features three prominent avant-garde musicians, namely Ben Chasny, Chris Corsano and Sir Richard Bishop, who will also be performing their own sets over the weekend too. If you’re yet to become acquainted with these three, here’s a quick introduction and a few reasons why their sets this year are going to be unmissable…
The trio released their debut album, ‘False Flag’, back in 2010, much to the delight of experimental music fans across the globe. The howling, untamed improvisations contained within simultaneously bring to mind the wide eyed free jazz of Ornette Coleman, the blistering noise rock of Boredoms and the free-wheeling cosmic energy of Can. ‘Fist Family’ finds Corsano exorcising his demons and unleashing hell upon his poor kit, as Chasny and Bishop’s guitars howl away at the moon like highly strung lions. ‘Sarcophagi’ ventures into calmer waters, with tender, shimmering guitar licks playing off against Corsano’s beautifully restrained drumming, whilst the aptly titled ‘Serrated Edges’ sees frantic, kaleidoscopic Hendrix-isms colliding with intricate, jazzy cymbal splashes and gleeful snare abuse. The vast, meditative psychedelia and slowly unfurling vibrations of 15 minute closer ‘Plain of Jars’ round off this aural journey in spectacular fashion.
Anticipation is running high in certain circles for the band’s follow up, ‘Formerly Extinct’ due to be released through Drag City Records on the 18th September. Expect to hear choice cuts from both records and much more from the band’s Supersonic set, especially as these three players’ improvisational skills are sure to come to the fore and provide one wild ride for all and sundry!
Chris Corsano is an extremely accomplished improv percussionist, who has collaborated with artists as diverse as Björk, Thurston Moore, Jim O’Rourke and even Jandek. Corsano will be joined at Supersonic by Mick Flower (of incendiary drone rock behemoths Vibracathedral Orchestra) for a set of intricate Eastern tinged odysseys, pitting these two dazzling musicians against each other in an intense yet expansive musical setting that promises to be a very absorbing journey indeed.
Six Organs of Admittance
Ben Chasny has played with everyone from psych-rock heroes Comets On Fire to David Tibet’s esoteric Current 93, but with his primary project, Six Organs Of Admittance, Chasny gets the chance to show off his skills as a song-writer. Ranging from spacious, heartfelt folk to scorching psychedelic jams, Six Organs Of Admittance’s music is constantly evolving and redfining itself. Expect nothing less than an absolute revelation from Chasny’s set this year!
Sir Richard Bishop
After cutting his teeth with the highly acclaimed experimental rock three piece Sun City Girls, Bishop began to explore more diverse influences, taking inspiration from a number of different sources from around the world to create a truly unique and thoroughly engaging sound. Traditional Arabic, Indian and African sounds are all audible within Bishop’s nimble fretwork, but there’s something else at play here too, that indefinable something that makes Richard one of the most exciting contemporary acoustic guitarists around. Miss his set at your peril!
Our annual programme of big sounds for little people returns! These performances act as an introduction to experimental music for children and their families.
Sunday 21st October 1.30pm
Old Library, Custard Factory Islaja
Her unique vocal style and daring DIY approach to music composition is coupled with a beautiful sense of playfulness. Soulful and icy in one breath, she is one of the key players of the Finnish free folk scene. http://islaja.com/
Saturday 20th October, 1.30pm
Old Library, Custard Factory Flower/Corsano Duo
Corsano is a multi faceted drummer and one of the most exciting improv percussionists in the world. Lightning quick yet with an unconventional approach to rhythm, we’re looking forward to some top notch dancing from the kids for this show. He teams up with multi instrumentalist, free psych player Mick Flower on strings. http://www.cor-sano.com/