Having finally reached a stage of absolute frustration and annoyance at the Situationists from somewhere in the midst of my dissertation, I decided to make use of the whole ‘know thy enemy’ chat and throw myself in head first. I guess I’m more used to the derive when it comes to psychogeography so I decided to set myself up a little game of chance.
I decided on a duration of 1 hour to start things off. Entertainingly, within about 4 coin tosses, I’d found myself very close to my house, being directed up what I can only describe as an arcade that I’ve never noticed before. The part of my brain that’s recently been obsessed with Benjamin’s Arcades Project found this amusing.
Here are the results, it dawns on me that I didn’t record a few instances where chance dictated that I go straight ahead instead of turning so the figures are slightly off I guess. More to think about for the next game.
I plotted out the route I’d been led down (above) and put together a little flash film of the journey (below). There were a few interesting discoveries along the way that I may write about at some point and there are a few possible pieces of work that may or may not arise from the game. You can take a look at a few more bits (more to follow) on flickr. I’d say it was quite enjoyable but I think it could be improved with more time to poke around, I felt a little against the clock having set myself a limit of one hour. Time permitting I’ll hopefully give it another go with some modifiers thrown in.
I’m really pleased to announce that my epic 2 and a bit hour tape process piece “The Persistence of Decay” has been selected for inclusion in radioCona’s Radio Art Space. A Slovenian exhibition of audio work which will be presented both in gallery spaces and as an FM broadcast from the 7th to the 15th of December. More information on the event is here if you can’t wait and want your very own copy of The Persistence of Decay, well, you can get the whole thing, along with a bit of chat about the process here.
And now, a trio of pieces made in the last week across some quite different projects.
First up is Heavy listing, the first proper sketch for what I think will for the basis for a live performance in Brighton in January next year and may beccome a new album (possibly titled Marconi’s Shipwreck but I’m not entirely sure yet). Heavy Listing by Erstlaub
Next is a recording of a practice for one of my occasional and fairly chaotic trumpet and pedal improvisations. I’ll be doing something along the lines of this live at Drouthy’s in Dundee on the 17th of November. It should be a pretty interesting night, I’ll probably post about it again nearer the time. 131011 by Erstlaub
Finally, a very personal audio treatment piece I made today. There’s an allusion towards what it’s about in the following description
“Song and music imprint themselves on our intrinsic sense of identity. This piece explores the idea of a song with very personal connection becoming trapped in the liminal space where memory and self start to break down. The underlying structure remains but nuance and texture are lost.”
A few short works of concrete poetry derived (dérived?) from psychogeographic ponderings based on local sites of resonance for me. The first echoes the profile of the Law Hill, the second, a strut of the Tay Road Bridge, the third traces the banks of the Tay Estuary.
CCTV and surveillance culture have become an underlying trope of the 21st Century. With this increased level of observation, we somehow become more annonymous. Blurred faces get lost in the crowd, actions stripped of context, the observer imparts their own narratives on the cast of the endless, unedited stream.
Caught on tape, our actions repeat, purpose forgotten, in an endless cry to the gods of the 21st Century
Then moving even closer to techno, I produced my first remix in years and years. It’s based on a forthcoming Broken20 release by Nanorhytmn, it’ll probably appear in the BrokenZero free remix release that we’re putting out to partner the full thing.
Finally, a total departure, a little visual haiku. I’d recently been to an artist talk by Ken Cockburn about he and Alec Finlay’s The Road North project which helped me tie together a few loose ends that had been floating around in my head for a few weeks. Mirroring the profile of the Law with content relating to explorations recently undertaken.
Lots coming up in the next few weeks from Broken20.
Also, I just saw Lars Von Trier’s Melancholia at the DCA. Amazing! Possibly the best contemporary film I’ve seen since his Antichrist which had a similarly profound impact. Can’t recommend enough.
Cheers also to all the people at the Shared Imagination Symposium this week for some interesting talks and ideas and for at least pretending to enjoy Gair and I’s Atom Town themed ‘performance lecture’.
I’m particularly looking forward to the keynote by Dr. Rob La Frenais, Senior Curator at Arts Catalyst , London an ever interesting and exciting organisation which I had the pleasure to perform at in the summer.
Places are very limited but you can attend by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire about spaces. The evening performance by Pernille Spence and the screening of Atom Town are open to all 6pm – 8.30pm, Thursday October 6th at Centrespace, DCA, Dundee.