Like all of ADE, Sound Lab is about pleasure at least as much as it is about business. For all the business and technological talks, it would be nothing if we didn’t remind ourselves what all this is for: awesome sound making! Which is why the evening event program is just as vital as any demo or discussion. Check it out:
STEIM’s Fedde ten Berge and Jesse Meijer have been working on The Pentacle 15.3 Surround Sound System for five years now. It is a powerful, bespoke high fidelity mobile speaker system consisting of 15 speakers and three subwoofers - all 18 speakers are purpose built for The Pentacle. The sound spatiallity of The Pentacle is controlled the same way you control an audio signal. This means its sound spatialisation is absolutely in sync with your audio and so the spatial positioning of sounds can be “played” live from a digital audio or modular synth system in the same way musicians control pitch or tone of notes.
The Pentacle is based and maintained at STEIM (Studio for Electro-Instrumental Music) in Amsterdam. Dozens of artists have been developing live performances and sound art experiences especially for The Pentacle during residencies there. STEIM is an independent electronic music center founded in 1969 which has been supporting an international community of experimental electronic performers, musicians, and visual artists, in developing unique instruments for their work for several decades.
The Pentacle artists The Pentacle program for ADE features 4 brilliant artists. Fedde ten Berge creates architectural sound structures evolving through complex rhythms, drones and melody lines, using his own self built hardware, including the PRP Voyager developed in collaboration with Ward Slager. Görkem Arikan is presenting his performance piece “ARMonic”, developed during his studies at the Institute of Sonology & STEIM - using a DIY wearable intervace that gives him the ability to shape prepared materials and live-sampled sounds in real time. Synthaclaus - a duo of synthesist Frank Baldé and drummer / percussionist Alex Brajkovic - combine different musical approaches, ranging from ambient textures to heavily sequenced rhythmic bursts. And Boy van Ooijen proves beyond doubt that sound sculpture isn’t just about academic noise, combining generative melodies, fast breakbeats, detuned synthesizers, subby basslines, broken bicycle grooves, and a little bit of nostalgia for the 90’s rave culture - all performed with a drumkit!
Algorave Thursday October 17th, Compagnietheater from 8 PM till 11:30 PM
Algoraves are electronic dance parties where the music and visuals are created by live coders in realtime. The word was coined around 2012, initially as a joke, but has since taken hold with Algoraves taking place worldwide. Algoraves focus on humans making- and dancing to music. Algorave musicians don’t pretend their software is being creative: they take responsibility for the music they make, shaping it using whatever means they have. More importantly the focus is not on what the musician is doing, but on the music, and people dancing to it. Algoraves embrace the alien sounds of raves from the past, and introduce alien, futuristic rhythms and beats made through strange, algorithm-aided processes. It’s up to the good people on the dancefloor to help the musicians make sense of this and do the real creative work in making a great feast.
The ADE Algorave session has a brilliant array of international talent: One Man Computer Club, originally from Sicily Coral and Oram Award winner Shelly Knotts from Bristol and Durham in the UK. Sabrina Verhage and Timo Hoogland from the Netherlands, and the Panda Zooicide collective, who are Amsterdam based but feature members from USA, Mexico, and Germany. Between them they bring all kinds of connections to academia and the international livecoding community, but vitally also detailed understanding of not just electronica and noise, but hip-hop, jazz, funk, rock and all kinds of other musical styles that they work into their code.
There couldn’t be a much better guarantee of musical quality - and musical surprises - than the hook up of Belgium’s leftfield guru LEFTO with Amsterdam’s own online radio institute Red Light. For this ADE Sound Lab session, LEFTO and Red Light Radio have brought together a prime selection of up and coming talent from the Low Countries.
Young Brussels quintet 2 Times Nothing promise an exciting, eclectic mix of jazz and electronic sound. Rotterdam based duo Animistic Beliefs deliver a lush and heavy tapestry of retro futuristic electro and techno. The Annie Pleasure project is shrouded in mystery, but we can tell you it is the brainchild of the bass player of one of Belgium’s most exciting jazz bands. Even more mysterious is De Witte Kunst, who have created remarkable buzz with just one soundcloud song and an intriguing Instagram presence. The ever-hypnotic married couple electronic space-dub-pop duo Peaking Lights, now Amsterdam resident, are flying high from their recent Dekmantel album and guarantee beautiful dreamscapes. And finally, the Belgo-Bolivian whizz kid Susobrino, with his unique blend of electronic beats and exotic sounds, took home the coveted “Most Promising Artist” at last year’s Red Bull Elektropedia Awards, and shouldn’t be missed at ADE.
On ADE Friday, Edison Jams Modular Sessions makes its return to Sound Lab - this year based at the Compagnietheater where we will see and hear some fabulous experiments in sound. Edison Jams promise “nerdy people doing cool things, cool people doing nerdy things!” which is pretty much a perfect summation of the combination of fun, sharp wit and seriousness that make up their showcases.
We’re looking forward to improvised modular sets by: Leoš Hort alias HRTL, co founder of Brno-based cassette record label Bükko Tapes and an active member of famous Bastl Instruments collective, which creates hand-made open-source music hardware. Flavia Ferreira aka Young Padawan, founder of the Beatlabs music production school in Barcelona and consultant to many important hardware makers. Mandy Bakker aka Jungle Of Wires, who brings deep musicianship to her trip-hop inspired modular work, thanks to her background as a drummer in diverse bands.
The Netherlands’ own Sjamsoedin, who over eight years has developed his modular performance system into a gorgeous light-and-sound installation, and perhaps most thrilling of all, the daddy of modular Malcolm Cecil, who not only introduced Stevie Wonder to the world of synthesis but has created untold glorious music of his own with the T.O.N.T.O. system and other electronic innovations.
The program also features the annual Demolition panel with moderator and DJ Dave Clarke alongside a panel of top DJ talent, demo pitches and audiovisual installations, plus there are three Gear Test Labs spread out over the Compagnietheater and De Brakke Grond where you can find a broad range of hardware and software brands to try out including Ableton, Moog, Pioneer DJ and Roland amongst others. A complete overview of the 2019 ADE Sound Lab program can be found here.
The program starts Wednesday, October 16th at De Brakke Grond and the Compagnietheater, and rounds up Saturday, October 19th. The ADE Sound Lab evening program is also accessible for ADE Card holders (limited capacity).
Photo credits: Adi Goldstein, Guap Ahmed, Joris Raaijman, Markus Spiske and Willeke Machiels