Music Biennale Zagreb: zeitkratzer Plays Kraftwerk & Malec
Zeitkratzer or “the ensemble of soloists” uses this oxymoron to describe itself, underlining that its strength lies specifically in the uniqueness of its members.
It was founded in the late 1990s by composer and pianist Reinhold Friedl, and since then has been active internationally through bold free projects, completely independent from musical and other institutions. Nine members, comprised of musicians and sound and light designers, come from very different European cities and perform works by the 20th-century avant-garde composers, electronic music artists and numerous participants from the alternative, underground and experimental international scene. Their areas of interest thus include to an equal extent new-music anthological pieces, collaborations with philharmonic orchestras etc., that is a sort of a “serious music context”, as well as rock, noise, and improvised music, and even folk and early music. The list of musicians it has collaborated with is very long, so we will only mention a few names to illustrate the ensemble’s versatility: Alvin Curran (musica elettronica viva), Zbigniew Karkowksi, Keiji Haino, Lou Reed, Elliott Sharp and Laurie Anderson.
The zeitkratzer also established a kind of collaboration with Ivo Malec, in the sense that Reinhold Friedl visited him in Paris, extensively interviewed him and devoted radio show episodes to him. As part of the program collaboration of the MBZ and the MaMa (Multimedia Institute) in Zagreb, the zeitkratzer will perform a tribute to this musician, recognizing him as an artist who inadvertently emerged as almost a pioneer of noise, drone or ambient electronic music already in the early 1970s. One might say that the zeitkratzer sees Malec as a progressive artistic figure who, in his time, masterfully balanced between the electronic and instrumental modes of composing and performing, flirted with alternative and experimental concepts, while also breaking the boundaries of “pure” taste. Pure taste is a category the zeitkratzer refers to, but does not bother with—instead, it believes that new music is cultivated and improved thanks to the constant contamination by other musical phenomena. The ensemble will present Malec’s electronic compositions in a live performance, with his last electroacoustic composition Artemisia from 1991 playing an important role in this process.
To mark the 20th anniversary of its founding, the zeitkratzer released a series of interesting albums, on which it presented its characteristic approach to the exploration of new musical territories. The first of these albums were dedicated to the Kraftwerk’s early releases, that is, to the phase in which the ensemble was closest to the krautrock genre. In keeping with the inclination to educate and develop the genre realm of its activities, the zeitkratzer will also present its own interpretation of the Kraftwerk's repertoire in addition to the tribute to Malec at the Pogon Jedinstvo. By combining these two musical phenomena that are so close, yet so distant, it will certainly ensure that the ears of the listeners are profusely and constructively contaminated.
concert in two parts:
first part: hommage Ivo Malec
second part: instrumental versions of Kraftwerk songs