Unsound Festival 2011, an original week-long avant-garde music event, starts on October 9 in Kraków, Poland.
Unsound Festival started in 2003 as an underground event of advanced music, and its importance has grown over the years. The annual event is produced by Fundacja Tone, a not-for-profit organization. Unsound has created smaller events in Prague, Warsaw, Bratslava, Kiev, and Minsk, the capital of Belarus. In 2010, a 10-day satellite event involving music, film, workshops and panel discussions, Unsound Festival New York, has begun, its third edition is set to spring 2012. Unsound is a founding member of ICAS (International Cities of Advanced Sound).
This year Unsound Festival theme is inspired from Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock, featuring experimental, futuristic music, and events related to the signification of futurism in music, arts, and human life.
The festival-goers have the opportunity to visit churches, galleries, cafes, museums, clubs in Kraków.
Live performers and DJs, experimentalists, party music, digital music, evolving and fractured forms of bass-heavy club music (Bass Mutations are a part of the festival) are included in this year line-up.
Chris & Cosey (Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti, ex Throbbing Gristle) with an unique form of industrial music are headliners at Engineering Museum. Peter Christopherson died last year and the band came to an end. Optimo Music released a vinyl edition of Chris Carter’s solo cassette of synthesizer music, The Spaces Between.
John Foxx and The Maths with electronic pop are also present. Foxx’s Metamatic is a strong evocation of urban and technological alienation.
Unsound Festival opens on Saturday, with Jingoku’s evening of film screenings, Jigoku’s Future Shock Film Season – Opening Marathon.
The selection includes documentary Future Shock (1972, US, Alexander Grasshoff), Soviet psyche-acid animation Journey To The Stars (1981, Russia, Roman Kachanov), No Blade of Grass (1970, UK, Cornel Wilde) with its apocalyptic futurism and Spectreman (1971, Japan, Yasuharu Hasebe) with nuclear superheroes and pollution monsters.
The opening of the Unsound Festival 2011 Installations takes place on Sunday, and displays works by John Rafman & Daniel Lopatin (Oneohtrix Point Never), Robin Fox (Editions Mego) and Raime (Blackest Ever Black) with Ewlina Aleksandrowicz and Andrzej Wojtas.
At the Engineering Museum Oj, Nie Mogę Się Zatrzymać!(1975) screened with a live score by Felix Kubin and Macio Moretti, and 1924 silent Soviet sci-fi movie Aelita, Queen Of Mars is live-soundtracked by The Generator Analogue Orchestra with Wojcek Czern and others. Felix Kubin plays with Danny Wolfers aka Legowelt at the nightclub Pauza.
Felix Kubin presents on Monday, The Symptom of The East, exploring sound art and experimental music in Eastern Europe. At Krakow Music Academy performs drone-folk heroes Natural Snow Buildings, then Mark McGuire (Emeralds) plays a live set of cyclical guitar and synthesizer improvisations. William Bennett (Whitehouse founder) presents the Poland debut of Cut Hands, afro noise genre (a mix of African and Haitian vaudou percussion with digital synthesis and processing).
Eastern Bridges, a series of Unsound Festival, starts on Tuesday, featuring artists from Eastern Europe, i/dex and The Volume. Robin Fox, audio-visual artist, talks about art and science “from neurobiology to cochlear implants, analog synthesizers to audio-controlled lasers”. At the Manggha art gallery, LXMP renders Herbie Hancock’s Future Shock! album. Niwea, iconAclass and Napsyzklat are present too.
The fourth day of Unsound Festival presents a discussion with William Bennett (Cut Hands, Whitehouse), hosted by Blackest Ever Black, centered on the controversial artist’s interest in voodoo and unconscious communication, including his own theory of “the transparent concession“. The 800th Lifetime: Music For The End of The World is a special concert which takes place at Manggha, and includes live performances from Kangding Ray (Raster-Noton), Robin Fox and HTRK.
On Thursday, at Unsound Festival Gordon Savicic talks about Social Media Hacking, and Steve Goodman (Kode9) about “sound, music and futurity”, drawing from his book Sonic Warfare. Dead Center, Christian Wallumrod and Ricardo Villalobos & Max Loderbauer perform live at the 16th century St Katherine’s Church in Kazimierz. Sun Araw, Hype Williams, Laurel Halo, Holy Other and Rustie play psych-electronic music at Manggha.
On Friday are planned talks with Leyland Kirby (The Caretaker), Morphosis, Catz n Dogz and Dave Tompkins (author of How To Wreck A Nice Beach, a history of the vocoder). Time Horizons: featuring The Caretaker, Kode9 + MFO (paying homage to the sci-fi short La Jetee) and composer Morton Subotnick performing Silver Apples of The Moon on the Buchla synth, accompanied by visuals from Lillevan.
Techno dance music is scheduled at the Unsound Festival on Friday night, Juan Atkins’ Model 500, MMM, Kassem Mosse, Ital, KiNK, Tin Man, Morphosis, Space Dimension Controller with DJs Joy Orbison and Catz ‘N Dogz.
Chris & Cosey and John Foxx play on Saturday at the Unsound Festival 2011, then Sex Worker, LA Vampires, Maria Minerva and Dylan Ettinger. Later perform 2562, Addison Groove, Dreadnought, Teeth, Andy Stott, Sepalcure and Brokenchord, DJ Spinn and DJ Rashad, Objekt, Jacques Greene and Jam City.
Unsound Festival closes on Sunday. Sinfonietta Cracovia interprets the music of Henryk Górecki and Arvo Pärt at the Tempel Synagogue, then A Winged Victory For The Sullen and Jacaszek. The Information Pylon – a co-presentation from Exotic Pylon and the nascent Public Information label – offers wyrd electronics from The Haxan Cloak, Ekoplekz and Stellar OM Source.
Unsound Festival 2011 ends with Burning Out closing party, with VHS Head, Braille, LA Vampires and Machinedrum.
Unsound Festival 2010 theme was Horror: the pleasure of fear and unease.
Unsound Festival 2010, Darkness & Light (video)
Unsound Festival 2010, The Pretty One (video)