Whitechapel Gallery Music For Museums series

Photo: Polly Braden

London's Whitechapel gallery will run a series of events this autumn which aim to explore the intersection of visual art and experimental music. Starting from the premise that during the 1960s experimental music began to spread its wings beyond the more traditional spaces of concert halls, the series will look at the relationship that formed between music and the museum through a series of live performances, films and audio interventions. On Thursday and Saturday evenings the gallery will present works by avant garde composers and artists from the fluxus and minimalist generations, as well as contemporary compositions, with performances from Rhys Chatham, Mark Fell, Florian Hecker, Thurston Moore, Ryoji Ikeda, Cara Tolmie, and more. A free programme of films looking at the interaction between the moving image and music will feature works from Cory Arcangel, Sonia Boyce & Ain Bailey, Beatrice Gibson,Tony Oursler, Nam June Paik, Jayne Parker and Elizabeth Price.

Music For Museums runs from 17 September–19 November. More information can be found at the Whitechapel website.

Christine Sun Kim’s first solo exhibition in the UK

The Carroll/Fletcher gallery in London will host a solo exhibition of the Berlin based artist Christine Sun Kim. Originally from California, USA, Kim has been deaf since birth. Questioning what she calls “the ownership of sound”, her performative works combine aspects of graphic score, American Sign Language and body language, working with material and devices such as iPad, transducers, audio speakers and piano wires to explore the materiality of sound.

Following previous shows with artists such as Thomas Benno Mader, Wolfgang Müller and Alison O'Daniel, Christine Sun Kim’s debut solo exhibition will run from 27 November–23 January at Carroll/Fletcher gallery, London. More information can be found here.

Complete edition of John Cage's Diary to be published

John Cage with Gordon Mumma

Siglio Press will publish the first complete edition of John Cage's Diary: How To Improve The World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse) in October. Covering the 16 year period between 1965–82, his collection of writings is spread over eight sections containing observations, anecdotes, assessments and stories featuring many friends and colleagues, including Merce Cunningham, Marcel Duchamp, Marshall McLuhan, David Tudor and others. Cage used many of the texts in lectures, where the layout, word count and type faces were determined using chance operation. In keeping with this spirit, editors Joel Biel and Richard Kraft have applied the same method to create the layout for this edition, which features coloured text and a total of 18 fonts.

These Cage texts were initially published in Clark Coolidge's journal Joglars. Diary: How To Improve The World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse) will be published on 30 October by Siglio Press.

Manuel Göttsching to perform E2–E4

This October, Manuel Göttsching will stage his solo electronic work E2–E4 at Inkfolk festival in Hebdon Bridge, UK. This will be the producer, guitarist and Ash Ra Tempel founder’s first ever performance of the piece in the UK, though he has played it before in Berlin, Madrid, New York and elsewhere. Recorded by Göttsching in his hometown West Berlin in 1981, the 58 minute piece is often cited as paving the way for minimal electronic music, trance rock and house.

The show will take place at the Hebden Bridge Picture House on 3 October, with support from Rough Fields, Moonboots (on Aficionado Recordings) and DJ CP. More information can be found at the Inkfolk website. You can read Keith Moliné talk to Göttsching about the making of this electronic masterpiece in The Wire 334.

Ice T and Ron McCurdy perform Langston Hughes jazz poems

West Coast rapper-cum-actor Ice T will join trumpeter Ron McCurdy for a performance of Langston Hughes’s jazz poem suite Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods For Jazz at The Barbican, London. Written in the early 1960s as a homage to the struggle for creative freedom, Hughes’s 12 part poem and music remained unperformed at the time of his death in 1967.

Ask Your Mama is part of the Langston Hughes Project happening at the Barbican, London, on 21 November. More information can be found here.

Humber Calling at Hull's Freedom festival curated by Scanner

Photo: Leon Chew

Robin Rimbaud aka Scanner has curated the Humber Calling strand of Hull's Freedom festival. Comprising six new commissions, Humber Calling will feature work inspired by the festival's wider theme of Broadcast: Voices Of Freedom as well as in response to a new Rimbaud composition called Air Time. “Artists submitting ideas for the commissions are being asked to consider the nature of the voice as our instrument to convey ideas, ideology, emotions, experiences; and/or to explore how broadcasting can cross political, geographical and social boundaries,” say the organisers. “Artists are asked to consider their commission in the context of a phone box – be that in, on, or in light of the phone box – marking and celebrating Hull’s iconic cream phone boxes, the legacy of the city’s independent communications infrastructure.”

Freedom takes place between 4–6 September. More information can be found here.

Volcano The Bear releasing retrospective box set

Photo: Ivan Jones

To mark their 20th anniversary, Volcano The Bear have compiled a box set collecting rarities, unreleased material, live recordings and tracks from early cassette-only releases. Containing 64 tracks running over four hours, the five LP set, titled Commencing, will be bundled with a 50 page book collecting stories and artwork from the group’s history.

In the two decades since they formed in Leicester, UK, in the mid-1990s, Volcano The Bear have acquired a global underground following for their buzzing surrealist songs, sleeve art and theatrical presentations. Their members have included Aaron Moore, Nick Mott, Clarence Manuelo and Daniel Padden – Mott left the group and formed Spectral Armies with Ben Jones and Sarah Sullivan of Jazzfinger.

Work on the box set has been in progress for more than two years. It’s now scheduled to be released in late October/early November by Miasmah. More details incoming here.

Ghost Box release tenth anniversary compilation

Jim JUPP (Belbury Poly), Julian HOUSE (The Focus Group), February 2012

The Ghost Box label goes back to the future – or should that be the past? – with a brand new compilation celebrating their tenth anniversary (which, in true time-shifting fashion, actually passed quietly back at the end of 2014). In A Moment… Ghost Box collects highlights from Julian House and Jim Jupp’s label’s catalogue. The anthology includes “Farmer’s Angle”, by Jupp’s Belbury Poly, from the very first EP released on Ghost Box in 2004, as well as tracks by House’s The Focus Group, The Advisory Circle, Pye Corner Audio and lesser known Ghost Box names such as Roj, Hintermass and Soundcarriers.

Other highlights include John Foxx and The Belbury Circle’s collaboration “Almost There”, and music from protohauntological classic The Séance At Hobs Lane by Drew Mulholland’s Mount Vernon Arts Lab. Originally released in 2001 and reissued by Ghost Box in 2007, The Séance featured contributions from Coil’s John Balance, Portishead’s Adrian Utley and Barry 7 from Add N To (X).

In A Moment… Ghost Box will also be released as a download, but the label promises that it will be producing physical copies as lavish editions (including a gatefold LP) with new artwork by Julian House and extensive sleevenotes by veteran ghost hunter Simon Reynolds, whose 2006 Haunted Audio article in The Wire 273 delved into the world of Ghost Box and fellow hauntologists Mordant Music. The collection is released by Ghost Box on 9 October, following a flurry of label activity that has included new reissues of The Séance At Hobs Lane and The Advisory Circle’s Other Channels.

Bikini Kill reissue first demo tape

Riot Grrrl outfit Bikini Kill have announced the reissue of their 1991 demo tape Revolution Girl Style Now. Coming out two years before their 1993 debut album Pussy Whipped (Kill Rock Stars), the cassette was the Olympia, Washington group’s first publicly released recording. Revolution Girl Style Now follows on from the reissue of The CD Version Of The First Two Records (which comprised of the Bikini Kill EP and tracks from Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah) by their own Bikini Kill Records imprint in June 2015. Featuring three previously unreleased tracks, Revolution Girl Style Now will be released on 22 September, in vinyl, CD and download formats, as well as a limited edition cassette. Pre-orders are available now from their website.

HT: Pitchfork

New films: The New Punks and The Great American Cassette Masters

Beth Custer of Club Foot Orchestra. Photo: Anne Hamersky

Film maker William Davenport has made two documentary films about a generation of musicians and artists who emerged out of the 1980s punk scene. One, called The New Punks, documents the progression of noise and industrial music, and it features footage and conversations with artists including GX Jupitter-Larsen of The Haters, Sue Ann Harkey of Audio Leter, Borbetomagus’s Jim Sauter and Donald Dietrich, Negativland’s Mark Hosler, Peter Conheim and Don Joyce, Beth Custer of Club Foot Orchestra, and more. The other, The Great American Cassette Masters, focuses on the DIY cassette culture that sprang up in the early 1980s, with contributions from DAS of Big City Orchestra, Zan Hoffman, Don Campau of The Living Archive Of Underground Music, Debbe Jaffe of Cause And Effect and Master Slave Relationship, Joel Haertling of Architects Office, and more.

“The films were inspired by the magazine I published from 1983–87 called Unsound,” explains Davenport. “The series is about the longevity of the creative process, as well as about how these creators paved the way for the following generations. Before the internet and at the beginning of desktop publishing, they created magazines, fanzines, flyers, custom LP and cassettes packages. I did not want to make films about the nostalgic past, but to focus on musicians and artists that have continued today.”

The series will be concluded by a third and final film, currently being edited, called Memories Of Music. More information on The New Punks and The Great American Cassette Masters can be found at the Talk Story Films website.