Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A huge thanks to Times New Viking for coming in and recording some songs at ZBC this past weekend!

If you didn't hear it today, we'll be posting those tracks right here on the blog. There may also be some YouTube worthy video as well. Be sure to keep your eyes on the blog!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Times New Viking at WZBC!!!

I'm absolutely obsessed with Times New Viking. You can ask any of the friends, roommates, ex-girlfriends, current girlfriends, concerned family members, and perfect strangers who I have attempted to convert to Times New Viking fandom. Really, Rip It Off is an awesome record and the band is an awesome live show.

Anyway, now that I've gotten all that out of the way I'll get to my point. Times New Viking will be doing a radio session at WZBC this Saturday before their show at the Paradise with Super Furry Animals. We'll be recording it and playing it the following Tuesday on Spectra Sonic Sound (10 AM - 12 PM). Who knows, they may also do an interview and tell me personal stuff. We just don't know and you'll have to tune. Also be sure to check here in the coming week for exclusive mp3's of the tracks they play. Maybe even some Youtube worthy video? You'll just have to wait and see!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Friday 2/15, 6-10 p.m.: Karlheinz Stockhausen Special

This Friday, WZBC will be airing a special 4-hour Test Pattern devoted to the music of Karlheinz Stockhausen. The program will be hosted by John Straub (host of WZBC's Kraft-o-Matic Bed o' Nails, every other Friday, 3-5 p.m.)

It's hard to imagine very many people wanting to listen to this many different Stockhausen pieces in a row for 4 straight hours. So here is an annotated list of approximately when different pieces will be aired. That way interested listeners can "pick their battles."

The program will focus on Stockhausen's recordings from the 1960's, with just a couple earlier pieces from the '50's and one later piece from the 1990's.

Annotated program from John:

6:00: I'm going to start with a 23-minute excerpt from Kurzwellen, recorded in 1969. This is a personal favorite. Stockhausen's own liner notes for the recording also put the piece into context by looking back at a few of his earlier pieces that I'll also be featuring, so I thought I'd read some of those notes as an introduction.

~6:30: Gesang der Junglinge (1956) An early classic mixing synthetic sounds with the recording of a boy's voice singing a Biblical passage, "Chant of the Adolescents in the Fiery Furnace"

~6:45: Kontakte (1958-1960) - piano & percussion playing along with pre-recorded sounds on tape. I'll play the 1st 12 minutes.

~7:00: Momente (1962-1964) Side 1 of the mid-60's vinyl release on Nonesuch. A cantata for soprano, choir, brass, percussion and electric organs. A lot of commentators emphasize how this piece was about "existence in the moment and ignoring the past," which is seen as a hallmark of Stockhausen's most famous work.

~7:30: Mixture (1964): Electronics with Orchestra. I'll play the 2nd half of this piece which is a mirror image of itself.

Stockhausen spent a lot of time in Japan in 1966, which had a big influence on his late '60's work. The next few things tend to be less complex and seem to be striving towards some kind of electronic world music.

~8:00: Telemusik (1966)

~8:20: Hymnen (1966-1967) - Electronic stew of various national anthems.

~8:30: Holger Czukay's "Boat Woman Song". This was my introduction to Stockhausen. Czukay was a student of Stockhausen's in the early 60's before he co-founded Can in 1968. This early solo recording from 1968 mixes shortwave radio signals from all over the world and recordings of traditional Vietnamese and Cambodian singing. Obviously influenced by Stockhausen's "electronic world music" especially Kurzwellen (Short Waves). My interest in Can led me to this beautiful solo recording, which led me to Stockhausen's Kurzwellen.

~8:40 Kurzwellen (1968) Here I'm going to play an excerpt from the 2nd half of a 1968 recording. I will open the show at 6:00 with the first half of a 1969 recording of the same piece. Performance of the piece involves musicians responding to random short wave radio broadcasts. The same timpani motif (a BBC station ID) happened to come over the shortwaves during these two different performances. The different reactions by the musicians to that identical stimulus is something that intrigued Stockhausen about these two recordings of Kurzwellen.

~9:05: Helicopter String Quartet (1995) - Beginning in 1977, Stockhausen spent most the rest of his life working on a 7-part operatic opus called Licht. The 7 parts corresponded to the 7 days of the week. Wednesday was one of the last pieces he completed in the mid-1990's. His Helicopter String Quartet is part of that piece of Licht. The Helicopter String Quartet involves each member of a string quartet playing in a different helicopter with independent flight paths. The musicians stay synchronized by wearing headphones in which they all hear the same click track. The 1995 premier was performed by the Arditti String Quartet. Here's a YouTube clip of a 2003 performance:


~9:35: Talk about Stockhausen's controversial quote on September 16, 2001. The excerpt from the quote that stirred up the controversy was that the 9/11 attacks were, "... the greatest work of art that exists for the whole Cosmos."

I will read the full quote and discuss the context.

~9:45: I will sign off and play an excerpt of the new recording of Stimung (1968).

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Neptune on the Z mk. II

So remember a few days ago, when I told you all that Neptune was coming to the Z but we didn't know when? Well, now we do. Check it:

Time: 10AM - 12PM, Feb 12.

Be sure to tune in suckers.