Travel Bug

March 2008


Back to health and the only bug I’m submitting to is the travel bug, with the last month taking me from Amsterdam to Paris, to Berlin and Freiburg, Torino to Stockholm and even Derby and Cambridge in the fair old Great Britain.


TheGithead tour on our little Gitmobile across Europe was mighty fun, driving an average of 1000 km a day slipping between city and city, rock and rolling to the very receptive crowds. Surviving on too little sleep, poor motorway food and free wi-fi whenever possible, we bonded through adversity, perversity and absurdity. People danced in Paris, headbanged in Koln and wouldn’t let us leave the stage in Amsterdam, so we intend to make this a regular punishment over the year!

Over to Stockholm with Sukhdev Sandhu for a rather extraordinary performance of our Night Haunts project, where Färgfabriken hosted our presentation in almost total darkness. Home to a terrifying installation by artist John Duncan during the daytime, we sat at one end of a gigantic industrial warehouse, in total darkness but for the reflection from a dim light bulb and monitor screen in the far distance where we were placed. The audience had to maneuver their way, as if blind, through the space towards us, with only the sound of amplified dripping water to entice and guide them. The restlessness of the night provided the inspiration for the words and sounds that they then experienced.

This month I’ll be participating in SPNM’s experimental music night, The Sound Source, at London’s Luminaire on 12th March. It will be an unusual and creative response to the work of the late Karlheinz Stockhausen. Headlining the event are Belgian pianist Daan Vandewalle, who will perform Klavierstücke I-IV, and drummer and percussionist Chris Cutler, who will join him for a version of Kontakte. I will then complete the line-up premiering a new work, Retuning Stockhausen, where I’ll be performing live on guitar solo with electronics for the first time in my life in front of an audience. It’s one thing to play guitar with a band, hiding in the ranks, it’s quite another to stand there alone, vulnerable and afraid!. Rounding off the evening we will team up to perform a newly commissioned tribute to one of Stockhausen’s hidden gems, Stockhoven/Beethausen. Should be a fun night out for all!


A free London show for anyone can be shared at the Barbican Centre on 8th March as part of Late Night Do Something Different, with a late bar for any fair drinkers and music, short films, workshops and live performances. I’ll be on stage live at 23.20 (well past my bed-time), after writer Julian Fox, comedy and sonnets from Ken Campbell and Pippa Evans, and my personal favourite - glow in the dark knitting – how can one resist attending?

I am soon off to Amsterdam to present my work as part of a series of lectures around the subject of Amateurism. We are submerged in slick, beautiful, highly produced creative work - in fashion, design and the arts. But perhaps even more inspirational than this are examples of ordinary people's creativity, which abounds in pieces ranging from cafe menus to flea-market brick-a-brack to funny emails. In fact, amateurism’s naïve passion often makes it of greater interest than “professional” work. I’ll be sharing some amusing stories and minor words of wisdom on this subject at the Amsterdam Academy of Architecture.


Also over in The Netherlands I will be showing a new film work at MU Gallery in Eindhoven NL this month too for a group show, Popshop. The show looks at the icons of mass culture in pop music, with artists Kathy Temin, Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard, Cory Arcangel, Ho Tzu Nyen presenting works that riff on ideas of popular music. I will be premiering Soul in Reverse, a new audio/video work that explores the image of Michael Jackson in popular culture, reversing his public image so that he begins as a white soul singer and ends up as a black artist.

The month concludes in Moscow running creative workshops for sound enthusiasts and radio producers from all over Russia, and hopefully cakes at the Kremlin for tea.

Yes, it’s exhausting just thinking about it all.

Until next month



::: listen :::

Steve Roden: A Christmas Play (Ltd Edition)
Aleph-1: Aleph 1 (Ideal)
Autechre: Quaristice (Warp)
Ricardo Villalobos: Enfants (Sei Es Drum)

::: read :::
David Lynch: Catching the Big Fish (Tarcher)
Drew Daniel: 20 Jazz Funk Greats (Continuum)
City Slivers & Fresh Kills: Films of Gordon Matta-Clark (SF Cinematheque)
Aleksandar Dundjerovic: Cinema of Robert Lepage (Wallflower)

::: film:::
Lonesome Jim, Steve Buscemi, USA
There Will be Blood, Paul Thomas Anderson, USA
Be Kind Rewind, Michel Gondry, USA
Le Scaphandre et le Papillon, Julian Schnabel, FR

::: diary dates :::

01 March-Kirikou & Karaba Ampithea 4000 Angers FR
02 March-Kirikou & Karaba Zenith Rouen FR
05 March-Kirikou & Karaba Docks Oceane Le Havre FR
07 March-Dancers Cut Guildhall Arts Centre UK
09 March-Kirikou & Karaba Le Zenith Caen FR
12 March-Stockhausen show Luminaire London UK
13 March-Dancers' Cut Leap Festival Liverpool UK
13 March-Lecture Academy of Architecture Amsterdam NL
16 March-Kirikou & Karaba Antares Le Mans FR
17-19 March-Workshops Moscow RU
20 March-Faultline dance Peepel Centre Leicester UK
22 March-Kirikou & Karaba Galaxie Amneville FR
26 March-Kirikou & Karaba Le Zenith Nancy FR
27 March-Dancers' Cut Deda Derby UK
29-30 March-Kirikou & Karaba Zenith Arean Lille FR
03 April-Barbican talk Instructions for Modern Living London UK
04 April-President of Honneur Qwatz Music Awards Paris FR
10 April-Faultline dance Junction Cambridge UK
13 April-Blindscape with Tez Nemo Festival Paris FR
19 April-Kirikou & Karaba Arena de Geneve CH
19-20 April-Future of Sound Valencia SP
23 April-Kirikou & Karaba Zenith de Strasbourg FR
24 April-Dancers' Cut Bridgwater Arts Centre Devon UK
30 April-Kirikou & Karaba Palais Nikaia Nice FR
03 May-May Ball Belfast N.Ireland
08 May-Future of Sound 11 Amsterdam NL
10 May-BFI Film event London UK
14 May-Kirikou & Karaba Zenith de Dijon FR
17 May-Kirikou & Karaba Summum Grenoble FR
24 May-Kirikou & Karaba Le Dome Marseille FR
28 May-Kirikou & Karaba Zenith Sud Montpelier FR
01 June-Kirikou & Karaba Zenith D’Auvergne Toulouse FR
04 June-Kirikou & Karaba Le Zenith Toulouse FR
07 June-Kirikou & Karaba Patinoire Meriadeck Bordeaux FR
11 June-Kirikou & Karaba Le Zenith Pau FR
12 June-Blindscape Slovenia
02 Aug-BBC Proms talk on Stockhausen London UK

07 March-Royce Hall UCLA with Manuel Gottsching LA USA


MU Gallery
Eindhoven NL

28 March - 04 May 2008

Group show of work that looks at the icons of mass culture in pop music, debuting Soul in Reverse, a new video work by Scanner that explores the image of Michael Jackson in popular culture, reversing his public image so that he begins as a white soul singer and ends up as a black artist. Other artists include Kathy Temin, Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard, Cory Arcangel, Ho Tzu Nyen.


Night Haunts
By Sukhdev Sandhu
Design Mind Unit
Sound Design Scanner

Artangel Interaction invited writer and historian Sukhdev Sandhu to write a nocturnal journal unfolding over the course of 2006. His postings will appear sequentially at this microsite specially designed by Mind Unit. Sandhu's forays see him prospecting in the London night with the people who drive its pulse, from the avian police to security guards, zookeepers and exorcists. Acclaimed artist and musician Scanner has collaborated with Sukhdev and Ian Budden of Mind Unit to compose the sound for the site.


Bittersweet Songs for the Sleepless City
Artangel Interaction

NightJam is the latest project in Artangel Interaction’s Nights of London series of artist-led collaborations with people who have a special view on a hidden side of the nocturnal city. Scanner invited young people at New Horizon Youth Centre in King’s Cross to collaborate on a creative project that expresses how the city at night looks and sounds to their ears and eyes. Through music and voice workshops they explored the sense of freedom and fear, celebration and solitude of the concealing darkness. Meanwhile, they captured their nights on disposable cameras, taking images that are at times eerie, startling, contemplative and funny. NightJam presents two elusive visual and musical journeys through the city’s ‘quiet’ hours.

NightJam presents two music tracks, a film, photographs, that can be experienced and freely downloaded. A limited edition CD is also being distributed for free through the website. Now featuring remixes of NightJam by Stephen Vitiello, Hakan Lidbo, Troy Banarzi, Si-cut.db and Pete Lockett.