The new sound of the city – Berlin Current presents young, unconventional, and experimental pop music from Berlin. Following an Open Call for Proposals, two winning projects will be premiered at CTM 2014 as an ongoing part of the Berlin Current project.
The Berlin Current Call for Works sought proposals from Berlin-based artists who channel the experimental and innovative energy of past music pioneers, producing music and sound that defies mainstream musical conventions and breaks new creative ground. Berlin Current is a collaborative initiative from CTM Festival, Berghain, Boiler Room Berlin, De: Bug, and BLN.FM, made possible by support from the Musicboard Berlin.
The organizers would first like to thank everyone who took the time to submit their proposals, which totalled an impressive 75 submissions and addressed the call from a wide array of sonic perspectives.
The first of two selected proposals was submitted by Owen Roberts, a Music Composition graduate from the University of Oxford. Active in the improvisational music scene, Roberts has participated in a range of performances, installations, and artistic collaborations in Berlin and Europe, and is currently preparing two LP releases for 2014. Roberts’ project, entitled Recycled Hyperprism Plastik for Amplified Chamber Ensemble, is inspired by Edgard Varese’s 1922/23 Hyperprism, written as a response to the new electronic world in which the composer lived. As part of an eight-piece ensemble, Roberts aims to extend Varese’s groundbreaking musical language into 2013 not by arranging techno for orchestral instruments, but by embracing the outer limits of acoustic instruments’ percussive, timbral and textural possibilities to create a relevant form of physical, instrumental techno, opening a dialogue between modern electronic music and its Western musical influences.
Kathy Alberici & Martha Jurksaitis, the call's second winners, propose to create a Sonic Portrait of the Funkhaus Nalepastraße, using a mixed-media approach that will capture elements of history and ecology of the home of the former DDR National Broadcasting Corporation through examining the acoustic, visual and atmospheric environments of the building. A multi-instrumentalist and performer best known for her role in psychedelic doom band, Drum Eyes, Alberici trained intensively in classical violin while growing up, subsequently pursuing a chaotic journey through jazz and noise music that led her to the experimental underbelly of Brighton, UK, and more recently, Berlin, where she forms part of the Small But Hard collective. In addition to an active performance schedule in Berlin and Europe, Kathy has contributed to several independent releases in collaboration with musicians such as Jan St Werner (Mouse on Mars), and Shigeru Ishihara (DJ Scotch Egg). She is also pursuing a Master’s degree in Psychology for Musicians.
Alberici's collaborator, Martha Jurksaitis, is an analogue film artist and founder of independent film production house Cherry Kino. An eight-year career as a film curator led Martha to the underground artist film scene, where she has been making work since 2006 in collaboration with musicians, poets and on solo projects. Jurksaitis' films are currently being toured through North America, with dates at both TIE and Antimatter film art festivals. She also holds a Research Master's degree in artist cinema and synesthesia.
These two works will premiere at CTM 2014 Festival (January 24 – February 2, 2014).
The jury consisted of:
In anticipation of the premiere of both commissioned works at CTM 2014, the Berlin Current programme is already underway, presenting 10 different Berlin-based artists in a series of events including the Polymorphism and n ≠ e (not equal) concert series at Berghain, and Boiler Room Berlin. Check here for an event listing.
More information on the Berlin Current project is available here.