Savage Pencil In Conversation At Supersonic!

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With less than a week to go until Supersonic’s 10th anniversary celebrations, the festival’s running order has almost fully taken shape and is gearing up to be one of the best editions in Capsule’s illustrious history. We can now unveil the icing on the cake of this year’s delicious looking lineup; an exclusive Q&A session with artist Edwin Pouncey (AKA Savage Pencil). Pouncey’s lurid, halucinatory artwork will be familiar to any readers of the Wire, as his intensely vivid and sharply satirical Trip or Squeek strips have been gracing the publication’s pages for over 10 years. Therefore, it’s only fitting that the Wire’s deputy editor Frances Morgan will be sitting down to quiz Pouncey on his artistic process.

Though his acerbic work can be seen as part of the rich lineage of satirical illustration, Edwin’s distinctive style is informed by a myriad of fascinating influences, assimiliating the ’60s freak scene, Japanese monster movies and the weird fiction of HP Lovecraft into own his eye scorching vision. Casting a wry and intoxicated eye at pop culture (and contemporary avant-garde music in particular), Pouncey makes use of a recurring cast of characters including such luminaries as Steve Reich, Stockhausen, Moondog, Mark E Smith, Sonic Youth, Robert Wyatt, Suicide, Kraftwerk, Crass, Lou Reed, Jandek, Throbbing Gristle and Sleep, weaving them into his obtuse visual tapestry with aplomb. In the process, Pouncey’s art itself has become as much a part of the current experimental art landscape as the artists he has paid tribute to, with the works of Savage Pencil adorning album covers and shirts from the likes of Sonic Youth, The Fall, Sunn O))) and numerous others.

With a career spanning almost four decades, Edwin is celebrating by compiling all of his Trip Or Squeek cartoons in one weighty tome for the first time. Containing over 100 comic strips, the book features extensive notes, a discography and never-before-seen preparatory sketches by Savage Pencil, in addition to an illustrated foreword by artist Gary Panter. The book is indenspensible for anyone with a passion for experimental art and psychedelic illustration, and it’s an honour to welcome him along to our tenth anniversary. We urge you to grab this opportunity to gain an insight into the mind that guides the Savage Pencil…

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The Art Of Listening – An Exploration Of Artistic Presentation

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In addition to blasting your eardrums with some of the finest sounds imaginable, Supersonic also aims to educate and enlighten in a myriad of other ways too. The decision to embrace other forms of art aside from solely music has been universally praised, and the festival has also found new ways to present these artforms, whether as part of exhibitions, installations, or even incorporating them into bands’ performances, and this year sees some of the most elaborate and spectacular artistic endeavours yet.

Starting things off at the Birmingham City University at 1:30PM on the first day of the festival, ‘Counting In’ is an extended panel discussion focusing on the presentation of sound works, installations, performances and audio art, and exploring how context can affect our approaches to listening. If you’ve ever wondered about the best ways to stage a work of experimental art, how audiences can be best encouraged to enjoy it, or even how to become a better listener yourself, then this promises to be an extremely illuminating discussion (not to mention a great networking opportunity).

The key to any good panel discussion is an interesting and diverse set of panellists, something that ‘Counting In’ delivers quite generously. You may have seen multi-disciplinary artist Lucas Abela (aka Justice Yeldham) performing a set filled with blood, sweat and tears using amplified shards of glass at last year’s festival, and his Vinyl Rally is also due to be exhibited this year – an ingenious fusion of vinyl fetishism, arcade game kitsch, audio collage and pure noise fury that has to be seen to be believed! Joining Lucas will be Frances Morgan (deputy editor of The Wire magazine), composer Simon Hall (Assistant Head of Music Technology at Birmingham Conservatoire) and Irene Revell (Director of Electra, an organisation that curates, commissions and produces projects by artists working across sound, moving image, performance and the visual arts). Revell will be using Kim Gordon (Sonic Youth) and Jutta Koether’s ‘Reverse Karaoke’ installation (also on show over the weekend!) as a case study, evaluating how the project entices and engages listeners and the means in which it does so.

This panel is presented in conjunction with Sound and Music, and supported by Birmingham City University.

Tickets are FREE to weekend ticket holders (places are limited and booking in advance is essential via [email protected] with ‘LISTENING’ in the title) or £10 https://www.theticketsellers.co.uk

Speaking of ‘Reverse Karaoke’, this piece is one of the most wonderfully participatory installations to ever be shown at the festival, beckoning participants into a lavishly painted Yurt, where a a lo-fi rehearsal set-up (complete with guitar, microphone, bass, and drums and a basic PA system) awaits them. Once inside, the participant can play these instruments and record their own song along with a pre-recorded vocal track of Kim Gordon’s voice. A live sound engineer ensures you’ll have a good tone, and burns the track onto two CDs – one for you, and one to remain in a record box as part of the piece itself! Since being commissioned by Electra back in 2005, the work has toured Europe extensively and been exhibited at Magasin-CNAC, Grenoble, France; MAK, Vienna, Austria and Wysing Arts Centre, Camrbidge, as well as being included in the major touring exhibition ‘Sonic Youth Etc.: Sensational Fix’, but this is the first time the piece has been shown in Birmingham. You’d be mad to miss out!

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Motorik Skills

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Motorik Skills:Apache Beat 101 presented by Hallogallo and The Quietus

The word ‘motorik’, which literally means ‘motor skill’ in German, was originally coined by journalists to describe the minimal yet propulsive four four beat that underpinned a surprisingly small amount of leftfield German rock music from the early 70s. It was a hallmark of Klaus Dinger’s drumming for Neu!, although he rejected the term, preferring to call the rhythm the ‘Apache beat’. This metronomic approach could be heard bubbling through in Kraftwerk’s ‘Ruckzuck’, and early Can fare such as the blistering ‘Mother Sky’ and ‘Father Cannot Yell’ but was cemented as we know it now by Neu!

This beat has retrospectively come to be seen as the war drum of modernity; the pulse pushing music and the listener into the future. It is often associated – with good reason – with the great transport networks of Germany, the railway lines and the autobahns. In fact the rhythm even mimics that of a car speeding along the open road or a train clattering along the rails: fast, measured, travel never ending across Europe endless. It was the rock beat stripped back to a glittering chassis. It was the minimalist framework on which subtle improvisation could take place.

Of course, when I had the temerity to say all this to former member of Kraftwerk and Neu! guitarist, Michael Rother, he laughed and said that in fact the inspiration for this measured German rock beat had come from something altogether less mechanistic and more fluid: a game of five-a-side football including himself, Klaus Dinger and Ralf Hutter.

As a bonus to fans we’ve invited Michael Rother on stage to take part in a Q and A discussing the motorik beat, hallogallo, Harmonia and Neu!.

Hosted by  The Quietus

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE THEATRE SPACE HAS LIMITED CAPACITY

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Hallogallo + Napalm Death confirmed for Supersonic

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FURTHER ACTS ANNOUNCED FOR
SUPERSONIC FESTIVAL 2010

HALLOGALLO 2010 – Michael Rother + Friends present the music of NEU!
NAPALM DEATH / PEOPLE LIKE US / DEMONS (W/SICK LLAMA) / OvO
/ CAVE / PART WILD HORSES MANE ON BOTH SIDES / DOSH / TWEAK BIRD / DRUMCORPS  / PCM

Joining confirmed acts including:

GODFLESH / SWANS / JAILBREAK FEAT. CHRIS CORSANO + HEATHER LEIGH / MELT BANANA / JAMES BLACKSHAW / LICHENS / BONG / GNOD /VOICE OF THE SEVEN THUNDERS / NECRO DEATHMORT / GNAW / EAGLE TWIN / BLUE SABBATH BLACK FIJI

22 – 24 OCTOBER 2010
Birmingham, UK
www.supersonicfestival.com

Tickets on sale now from:
www.theticketsellers.co.uk
www.seetickets.com

Following the news that the 2010 edition of Birmingham’s acclaimed annual Supersonic Festival will be headlined by SWANS and GODFLESH, Capsule are excited to announce a further round of live acts who will also perform at this year’s festival, including HALLOGALLO 2010 and NAPALM DEATH. Tickets are now on sale!

“I´m thrilled to return to Supersonic this year with my new live project Hallogallo 2010. We will present some favourite music by NEU!, Harmonia and from my solo albums. I look forward to Supersonic this year because two great musicians and friends are joining me in Hallogallo 2010: Steve Shelley (drummer of Sonic Youth) and Aaron Mullan (guitar player of Tall Firs). Expect some fast-forward movement!” – Michael Rother, Hallogallo 2010/NEU!

Capsule are also excited to confirm that unquestionably the most influential band in extreme music’s ferocious history NAPALM DEATH will be performing in their hometown to make their first ever Supersonic Festival appearance. Acclaimed as the creators of Grindcore, Napalm Death will be pushing the envelope of metal to new extremes in what is guaranteed to be an unforgettable performance.

“We are very much looking forward to playing Supersonic this year. It’s always great to play a hometown gig, and with this festival being so diverse musically it’s going to be even more fun for us as we rarely get the chance to play such events –  and on the same stage as SWANS, well what can I say?” – Shane Embury, Napalm Death

Also confirmed are an incredible, eclectic mix of music and visual artists, including PART WILD HORSES MANE ON BOTH SIDES with their mesmerizing and unforgettable avant-primitivism,  oVo with their incredible combination of heavy riffage, bombastic drumming and unforgettable vocals, as well as a return from the dark lords of Drum and Bass, PCM. DOSH will be performing, complete with mandatory pots and pans, as well as DRUMCORPS, with their unique, high-energy mix of music production values and the raw power of American hardcore.

TWEAK BIRD are also confirmed, bringing their big drums, fuzzed out baritone guitar and tandem spacey vocal melodies, and also CAVE, with their sickeningly tight drum and bass. There will also be multi-sensory art in the form of DJ and multimedia artist Vicki Bennett, aka PEOPLE LIKE US, and dark visual music trio DEMONS (W/SICK LLAMA).

This latest announcement forms part of a series of line up announcements for Supersonic 2010 with many more exciting acts and artists to be revealed in the coming weeks and months.

Tickets on sale now from:
www.theticketsellers.co.uk
www.seetickets.com

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