Concerts and Events

Electric Eclectics 5. The Funny Farm, Meaford, Ontario. July 30–August 1, 2010. True to its moniker, Electric Eclectics is more than just a head-spinningly diverse festival of modern music. It’s also a truly eclectic experience. Equal parts experimental music festival, bush party, camping trip, participatory art happening, and gathering of lovable misfits, EE is a[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Jonathan Bunce Issue 108

Sound Symposium XV. St. John’s, Newfoundland. July 2–10, 2010. Sound Symposium XV offered up in equal portions traditional concerts, sound installations, urban music, and everything in between. The festival itself became a nine-day art event, greater than the sum of its parts, and for that, the curatorial team deserves to be applauded. For the duration[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Andrew Staniland Issue 108

Big Ears Festival. Knoxville, Tennessee. March 26–28, 2010. Clean, tidy, and walkable, downtown Knoxville feels more like Europe than America. Unlike the Next Big Thing-chasing club crawl of that other Southern-U.S. fest, South by Southwest, in Austin, the Big Ears Festival is a carefully curated festival driven by an artistic mandate to showcase cutting[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Jonathan Bunce Issue 107

Sonic Acts XIII. Amsterdam, The Netherlands. February 25–28, 2010. Since its launch in 2000, Sonic Acts has become a major biennial showcase for electronic music and intermedia art in Europe. This year’s thirteenth edition lived up to its reputation with an ambitious and densely packed program of concerts featuring new and established artists from such[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Patrick Valiquet Issue 107

Densités Festival. Fresnes-en-Woëvre, France. October 23-25, 2009.   A rural French hamlet in the Lorraine countryside isn’t the setting you would imagine for a world-class festival of unadulterated Electronic and Free Jazz music. Yet the Densités Festival in Fresnes-en-Woëvre—population five hundred—about eighty kilometres[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Ken Waxman Issue 107

Decibel Festival. Seattle, Washington. September 24–27, 2009. Decibel is an annual international electronic-music and visual-arts festival celebrating its sixth year, which it did by expanding its programming with stacked line-ups within genre-themed showcases, creating some scheduling conflicts and dilemmas of choice for audiences.   The[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Andrea Ayotte Issue 107

X Avant Festival. The Music Gallery, Toronto. October 21–25, 2009. The fourth X Avant Festival at Toronto’s Music Gallery was entitled Convergence and Collaboration. As noted in gallery artistic director Johathan Bunce’s program notes, the theme was “inspired by ambient music forefather Brian Eno’s idea of ‘scenius,’ .[...] Read more

Concerts and Events David Dacks Issue 106

Sonic Circuits Festival of Experimental Music. Washington, D.C. September 22–27, 2009. Musicologists love to remind us how utterly primal and universal their subject has proven to be. They point to bone flutes and other instruments turned up at the earliest proto-human excavation sites and to the failure among anthropologists to find a single culture, present or past, bereft of[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Richard Sheehe Issue 106

Guelph Jazz Festival. Guelph, Ontario. September 9–13, 2009.   The annual Guelph Jazz Festival is always populist. In its sixteenth edition, it extended its support of outdoor improvisation, plus interaction between Third and First World musicians without lessening its commitment to Free Music. Much of the outstanding music making came from the[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Ken Waxman Issue 106

Jazz em Agosto. Lisbon, Portugal. August 1–2, 6–9, 2009.   There are plenty of festivals designed to exploit beautiful physical settings, but they tend to present the most accessible (and festive) musical genres. At the opposite end of the spectrum there are festivals that emphasize challenging music in ad hoc environments. Somehow, Jazz em[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Stuart Broomer Issue 106

Ulrichsberger Kaleidophon. Ulrichsberg, Austria. April 30–May 2, 2009. A site-specific performance that took into account the dimensions and machinery of a still-functioning 1853 linen factory, a resounding interface between pulsating electronic and acoustic instruments, and a full-force finale involving a mid-sized band were among the notable performances at 2009[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Ken Waxman Issue 105

Suoni Per Il Popolo Festival. Montreal, Quebec. June 3–30, 2009. Nightly touring an edition of the Suoni per il Popolo Festival means visiting with audiences as diverse as the musical menu itself. Without fail, the annual Montreal festival that urges guests to “Liberate your ears” brought to the fore exciting and diverse programming in more[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Deanna Radford Issue 105