Friday 2 September 2016, 8pm
Tim Hodgkinson / lap steel guitar, electronics, clarinets
Thomas Lehn / analogue synthesiser
Roger Turner / drumsets and percussion
Since 1997, KONK PACK have toured regularly throughout Europe, completed four major tours of the US, and have been described by The Wire magazine's Lee Henderson as "one of the most exciting improv groups in the world." The group have released four compact discs on the German label GROB, and have a fifth CD out on the Megaphone label in Baltimore, USA. They have performed at many major music festivals from Vancouver to Belgrade. The musics they've made individually are reason enough to take note of this trio, but the music they make together leaves audiences amazed and inspired.
Joining them on the bill will be Stockholm-based Australian musician, John Chantler, marking the launch of 'Which way to leave?’, his latest LP for Lawrence English’s ROOM40 label.
John Chantler's visit has been made possible with support from The Swedish Arts Grants Committee.
Increasingly lauded as a contemporary composer, with works featured at international contemporary music festivals, and a set of pieces for ensemble out on the Mode label, Hodgkinson has also a powerful commitment to intense and highly energised performance practice. In over thirty years' work he has placed himself in a series of definitive projects, whether as cofounder of the seminal Henry Cow group, as saxophonist with influential avant metal band God, or as bass clarinet soloist in the spectral compositions of Iancu Dumitrescu. His lap steel guitar playing remains completely uncategorisable bringing subdued and not so subdued echoes of rock musics and other ethnicities.
Schooled both as a concert pianist playing contemporary repertoire and as a recording technician, Thomas Lehn deploys a huge musicality through his unique chosen outlet the analogue synthesiser. This instrument allows him extremely close and immediate contact with all aspects of sound modification - a vast gamut of living electronic sound produced with unmatched speed and fluency. Thomas Lehn simply represents a coming-of-age of electronic sound production in the domain of concert performance that sets a standard for the entire medium. He is therefore unsurprisingly an essential member of many of the most active and significant projects in this highly international and dynamic scene.
Over decades Roger Turner has brought the renowned volcanic power and finely honed precision of his drum work to ensembles that have often forged real connections with musicians both sides of the Atlantic. In addition he has worked extensively in the microscopic laboratory of the acoustic duo situation where he acquired a highly developed sense of detail and of dynamic control. One of that select group of world-class players who have collectively redefined the language of contemporary percussion. In Turner's hands minute inflections of tension can shape the group's musical direction and galvanise a new level of audience experience.
John Chantler is a musician and organiser living in Stockholm, Sweden.
In 2016 Chantler released 'Which way to leave?’, his latest LP for Lawrence English’s ROOM40 label.
The self-reflexive sequencing that tracks the sub-harmonic series in the opening blast of 'Falling Forward' positions the record as Chantler's most explicitly melodic. These melodies however do not exist in a mono-dimensional vacuum, rather they co-exist in a meshed framework of dynamic timbral layers.
The record’s abrupt cuts, deft variations of density and unexpected diversions are happily explored with headlong dives into ravishing texture and extended stretches of surface stasis. The music draws on a domestic reimagining of the traditions of studio based electronic music/musique concrete and 20th century minimalism and delivers this with brash revitalized energy.
This new LP follows ‘Still Light, Outside’ an extended suite that combines passages of stark minimalism centred at the bodily invasive extremes of the pipe organ’s register with striking explosions of colour; massed chords shot through with heavy distortion and electronics that operate according to their own dream logic. It was described as ‘strikingly beautiful’ by The Guardian.