adventures in circuit bending, diy electronics and experimental music
This week saw 2 specially commissioned performances by Japanese noise artist Merzbow (Masami Akita) with the Dirty Electronics Ensemble led by De Montfort University’s own noise medic Dr John Richards (kREEPA).
The project began a few weeks ago with a 2 day workshop with John to build a DIY electronic instrument, the Sudophone or Merztin, which would be central to the performance. The Merztin consists of a simple oscillator, fuzz and feedback circuit with an amplifier and speaker housed within a baked bean can, the performer can control pitch and feedback via several body contacts. An additional jack socket was added at Merzbow’s request.
Rehearsals took place on 16th April followed by the first performance that evening at the Hare and Hounds, Birmingham with support from Alienist (Nick Bullen, ex Napalm Death). The second performance took place at DMU’s PACE studio 1. Merzbow and John took center stage flanked by the 27 strong ensemble, Masami with 2 laptops and an arsenal of guitar pedals and John with his Kreepback instrument. The performance began with the ensemble playing unamplified, with sporadic pulsing tones and squeaks as the sound was slowly brought out of through the PA, building the with intensity into a wall of of sound at which point Merzbow kicked in with a blistering seismic sonic assault.
Merzbow and the Dirty Electronics Ensemble Pt 1