Last November I had to learn that Dietmar Gallhammer, whom I first knew as driving force behind the swiss anarcho-hc-experimental band Jaywalker had died in Autumn 2012. We’ve been in touch briefly during the late 80’s and early 90’s resulting in an interview and an concert in my then home-town. On Klappstuhl I issued one of their tapes – live recordings from 1988 – on which I stumbled last Autumn again.
I needed a break from the heady electronic & experimental stuff I’ve been listening for some time continously and started to assemble the various bits and pieces, including the final tape he sent me as Jaywalker Recordings with permission to use it as it fits.
Over time parts of it appeared on various Compilations but never completely. So instead of simply reissuing the live tape for the digital age I’ve decided to remaster all the material and compile an Archive Release in the spirit of anarchistic DIY attitude as Free Download release with artwork based on DD’s original prints and dedicate this release to him.
When Jaywalker fell apart Dominique Mollet appeared as member of Dwarfish while DD founded another hc trio; Religious Overdose shortly after with Ivo Pärt & Thomas Peter, resulting in the album ‘Flatus Flow Rate’ in 1996. His more experimental leanings where sat on the back seat with this but not for long. In fact he got simultanously involved in Destroy After Use with Frankie Buchholz and Martin S. Past with whom he kept performing over the years on guitar and videoprojection. See some excerpts here on his utube channel.
Besides his musical musings he kept an interest in graphics and invested his time besides parenthood in a multi-media workshop for mentally handicaped people and founded a time-trade (trade of abilities and time instead of payment) platform in his home area Aargau.
Some of his graphical experiments with HDR photography can currently be viewed via his Flickr account.
A final glimpse showing the direction his musical path was going in 2012 is this otherwise unreleased solo track:
Boyd Rice spread the word on Dec. 17th, 2017; the mighty Z’EV is gone.
66 years is perhaps not the shortest lifespan and no one get’s out alive but it left me speechless for quite some time. The shock waves are increasing.
If one person was the anti-figurehead of Industrial culture it was him. Nice and handsome in person, incredible consequent and forward in his works. I’ve only met him once, approaching him after a performance in 2005 slightly embarrassed to out me as a ‘fan’ but I could not resist to let him know how much his attitude and concepts meant to me.
After studies at CalArts he moved to the bay area where he adopted the artist name Z’EV in late 1979 and developed his unique percussive style with found and used objectsformed from industrial materials such as stainless steel, titanium, and PVC plastics f.e..
“The foundation of my work, regardless of genre, is Process combining the Dadaist / Duchampian notion of Found / Finding, the Cut Up of Brion Gysin, and Cagian indeterminacy” says Z’EV in his own words.
In late 1980 he opened up for BAUHAUS on their british / european dates. His influence on Test Dept., Einstürzende Neubauten and others can only be guessed today.
Z’EV lived more than 10 years in Amsterdam, and guested there as Teacher at the Theater School for New Dance Development besides pursuing his projects. While performing was his main way of reaching people he released plenty of audio works, solo and quite a lot collaborative efforts (with Chris Watson, KK Null, Merzbow, Genesis P. Orridge, Larsen, Hati and Organum to name only a few) and published several writings.
Most famous is ‘Rhythmajik‘ on Rhythm and Magic obviously, first published by Temple Press in 1992 as book, later distributed freely as PDF via his site. Examples of his audio visual works sculptures, videos etc. can be found also. Some more music was self-published or reissued via bandcamp.
Back to the original fb posting, I feel there’s not too much one can add to these words:
“I would say that Z’EV was to the avant garde what Iggy Pop was to rock and roll: total intensity, energy and raw power and he often left the stage in the early eighties cut up and bleeding from the injuries he received from his own instruments. ………… a man I thought was one of the most under appreciated figures in modern music. A linguist, an ethnomusicologist, a scholar, a mystic; but a man who could distill all this into a performance so intense that it could captivate an audience in a punk rock venue. That was his unique gift. He was one of the most talented people I have ever met. And there has never been any performer akin to him.”
[Boyd Rice / NON]
Two new releases, one from the ever so busy Thisco mainstay Rasalasad, in his style published as free / pay what you want release full of concentrated drone ambience or perhaps “Hypnotic Escapism Music” as in the description of the Thisphoria album on Grain Of Sound which seems fitting for most of his recent releases.
And from Cologne / Berlin finally the debut album from Mik@, also known as part of DL, or The M.M.V.P. projects, a release with the central theme of urban living & travelling, transition phases and unfullfiled desires.
A great shot showing Marsh / Andrews / Baker in full form performing at the Paradiso in Amsterdam 23 / 09 /2017.
The final gig of this year’s return to live performance with the aid of many old allies – Steve Halliwell (Keys) also in the background to be seen, The Syd’s i.e. Sarah and Wendy Patridge on Backing Vocals, Mike Cozzi (Gtr.) and on the Bass Scott Firth (PIL).
Shriekback used the Kickstarter Platform to make this possible and played many tracks from 1985’s ‘Oil And Gold’, a few from ‘Big Night Music’ and some classic singles like ‘My Spine Is The Bassline’, ‘All Lined Up’ in updated versions but only one song from their recent ‘Without Fish And Strings’ album; ‘Recessive Jean’ which is not the strongest imho but worked fine as a medley with the incredible groovy ‘Feelers’.
It was hard to tell who was more delighted that this happened, the band or the fans – a great night out in a great City. Thanks to modern tech nearly every move is documented somewhere but to have been there is actually still priceless.
“2017 marks the 40th year since Martha and the Muffins was founded in Toronto by Ontario College of Art students David Millar and Mark Gane, along with Martha Johnson, Carl Finkle and Tim Gane. Several months later, the band was augmented by two more members, Andy Haas and Martha Ladly. ‘Summer of Song’ is a remembrance of the early days of the band, when we were young and everything seemed possible.”
A very dreamy and thoughtful ballad, well i guess only a few miss getting calmer while travelling through the decades.
On another note Echo Beach released a second Compilation of M&M Remixes in July, called ‘Where Blue Meets Green (balearic edits)’, Martha and the Muffins tracks re-edited, re-sampled and “focused” by DJ’s Sir Billy, TC Sunshine and Martin “ez” Fekl. See and hear the promo video to get an impression of the sunny spirit here:
Andhere’s a bonus remix of their brandmark single “Echo Beach” which is semi-surprisingly not included in the above mentioned Ibiza inspired DJ mixes and only available currently as a free promo download.
Semi-surprisingly indeed if you consider Echo Beach already released a limited CD full of remixes of this one song in 2010 at the 30th anniversary of the original Single release.
Of course not only Nicolai Beverungen (the label head) was caught by this catchy melancholic danceable working class lines, “Echo Beach” was rightfully a Canadian, Australian and British Top 10 Hit and is still remembered as one of the classic New Wave / Post Punk tunes of the 1980’s.
Finally their debut Album Metro Music will receive the deluxe treatment from Universal Music Canada and be reissued as CD / 2LP with bonus tracks unknown yet.
Hard to believe but this will be just the second CD issue of this classic Album at all (…).
Marco Milanesio finally opened up his archives from the past a little wider resulting in the issue of an unreleased ambient experimental studio session recorded in December 1996. Remastered at O.F.F. and issued via the renowned and always busy Nostalgie De La Boue:
The new Blacksilklabel from Berlin released mid July an 12″EP / DL of three remastered and two remixed tracks, taken from the deleted HAX ‘Tecnologie Del Movimento’ Compilations, the early Split Tape ‘Notturno’ and one from the final Album ’24 o 25′.
Although this sounds a bit mixed up the tracks work very well together and the (to me unknown before) remixers Phase Fatal & Unhuman spice up the tracks perfectly. The only lowpoint is the artwork which is close to meaningless to me but musically I am more than happy and this will make my 2017 best of list anyway….
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