Tuesday 15 February 2022, 8pm
new quartet is a recently formed group of John Butcher (saxophones), Christian Kobi (saxophones), Christian Müller (electronics) and David Toop (objects, flute).
After studio recordings in the city, this debut concert at OTO will allow the group to further expand their vocabulary and investigate modes of operation as yet undefined.
Butcher is well known as a saxophonist who attempts to engage with the uniqueness of time and place. His music ranges through improvisation, his own compositions, multitracked pieces and explorations with feedback and unusual acoustics. Since the early 80s he has collaborated with hundreds of musicians – including Derek Bailey, Rhodri Davies, Andy Moor (EX), Phil Minton, Christian Marclay, Eddie Prevost, John Stevens’ SME, Gino Robair, Polwechsel, Mark Sanders, John Tilbury, and Okkyung Lee.
Alongside long term projects he values occasional encounters; from large groups such as the EX Orkestra & Butch Morris’ “London Skyscraper”, to duo concerts with Fred Frith, Akio Suzuki, Paal Nilssen-Love, Keiji Haino, David Toop, Otomo Yoshihide, Sophie Agnel and Matthew Shipp.
Recent compositions include “Penny Wands” for Futurist Intonarumori, two HCMF commissions for his own groups, “Good Liquor Caused my Heart for to Sing” for the London Sinfonietta and “Tarab Cuts”, a response to recordings of early Arabic classical music which was shortlisted for a 2014 British Composer’s Award.
“English saxophonist John Butcher may be among the world’s most influential musicians, operating at the cutting-edge of improvisatory practice since the ‘80s. Whenever an acoustic musician starts to sound like a bank of oscillators, a tropical forest, a brook or an insect factory, Butcher’s influence is likely nearby.” – New York City Jazz Record.
His work explores the relationship between sound, silence and action in space. He studied music in Basel, Paris and Zuerich, with a concentration in experimental music and improvisation. Kobi performs and creates with various musicians, composers and artists in context of long term partnerships with artists such as Phill Niblock, Jürg Frey, Taku Sugimoto and Keith Rowe. Since 2004 he curates the „zoom in“ festival for improvised music at the Minster of Bern. Christian Kobi teaches improvisation at the Bern University of Arts (HKB).2004 Founder and artistic director of »zoom in«, a festival for improvised music at Berne Minster.
2006 Co-founder of the new music label «CUBUS RECORDS».2012/13 Artistic director of Szofa Budapst (supported by Pro Helvetia) When improvising solo all comes out of a person: Every detail of the sound, every turn in the flow, any adjustment in the spatial and temporal context are dominated by the person on stage. Christian Kobi pursues a prolific solo carrier alongside his many activities as a saxophonist in Konus Quartett as well as founder and curator of festivals. Through an intensive exploration of improvised music he developed highly personalized sound language. 2018 Music Prize of the Canton of Bern.
born in 1971 near Basel, Switzerland, is clarinettist and electronic-musician. He completed his classical studies at the Conservatory for Music & Theater. During the last twenty years Christian Müller worked mainly as improvising electronic-musician, electro-acoustic bass-clarinettist and composer with a conceptual approach. He realized numerous works with the duo Strøm (with Gaudenz Badrutt, electronics, since 2000) and also in national and international projects. As member of Strøm and as a solo musician he created several sound installations and audiovisual pieces and also worked in multimedia-based contexts with dancers and performers. Since 2010 he works with the writer Regina Dürig as Butterland, an interdisciplinary project that combines text and sound. Furthermore he works continously in various contexts and in various bands like DEER, IMO, Convulsif or Infest.
He collaborates and has collaborated in diverse constallations for concerts and multimedia-based works, a. o. with the musicians Martin Schütz, Hans Koch, Christian Kobi, Tomas Korber, Diatribes, Jonas Kocher, Bertrand Denzler, Jacques Demierre, Burkhard Beins, Clayton Thomas, Oren Ambarchi, Bertrand Gauguet, Michel Doneda, Flo Götte, Norbert Möslang, toktek, Simon Berz, Peter Conradin Zumthor, Lionel Friedli, Lê Ninh Quan, Mitsuaki Matsumoto, Urs Peter Schneider, Strotter Inst., dieb13, Susanna Gartmayer, Patricia Bosshard, Yan Jun, Cristián Alvear, Sergio Merce, Loenel Kaplan, Gabrieal Areal, Fernando Perales...
Solo and as member of Strøm, DEER and Convulsif he toured through northern, central and eastern Europe, Russia, China, Chile and Argentina.
David Toop (born 1949) has been developing a practice that crosses boundaries of sound, listening, music and materials since 1970. This encompasses improvised music performance, writing, electronic sound, field recording, exhibition curating, sound art installations and opera. It includes seven acclaimed books, including Rap Attack (1984), Ocean of Sound (1995), Sinister Resonance (2010), Into the Maelstrom (2016) and forthcoming - Flutter Echo, a memoir first published in Japan in 2017 (May 2019) and Inflamed Invisible: Writing On Art and Sound 1976-2018 (2020). Briefly a member of David Cunningham’s pop project The Flying Lizards in 1979, he has released thirteen solo albums, from New and Rediscovered Musical Instruments on Brian Eno’s Obscure label (1975) and Sound Body on David Sylvian’s Samadhisound label (2006) to Entities Inertias Faint Beings (2016). His 1978 Amazonas recordings of Yanomami shamanism and ritual were released on Sub Rosa as Lost Shadows (2016). In recent years his collaborations include Rie Nakajima, Akio Suzuki, Tania Chen, John Butcher, Ken Ikeda, Elaine Mitchener, Henry Grimes, Sharon Gal, Camille Norment, Sidsel Endresen, Alasdair Roberts, Thurston Moore, Ryuichi Sakamoto and a revived Alterations, the iconoclastic improvising quartet with Steve Beresford, Peter Cusack and Terry Day first formed in 1977. Curator of sound art exhibitions including Sonic Boom at the Hayward Gallery (2000), his opera – Star-shaped Biscuit – was performed as an Aldeburgh Faster Than Sound project in 2012. He is currently Professor of Audio Culture and Improvisation at London College of Communication.