One day, I came across Keisuke Matsuno on Don Mount’s YouTube channel. Suddenly it was going, “Who is this guy? This is a kind of guitar I love: exactly the way he does what he does, in the context in which he does it.” Certainly, there are other guitar players playing modern guitar sounds within the context of already outside, noisy, or fully electronic music, like Matsuno’s work with Hans Tammen. Rarer is the ability to inject these elements into a largely consonant context, like Nels Cline with Wilco, Ethan Ballinger’s work with country star Lee Ann Womack, or the subversive playing Matsuno himself does in saxophonist Timo Vollbrecht’s Fly Magic ensemble.
Summer festival season will be here before you know it. Hopefully we will be virus-free by then and you can enjoy the outdoors in the company of like-minded music fans. Either way, you can count on Guitar Moderne to supply virtual festivals like this to enjoy in the air-conditioned, Portapotty and germ-free comfort of your home.
We start the proceedings with this amazing Terje Rypdal trio concert from a decade ago that I seem to have missed, with Miroslav Vitous triggering orchestral samples.
This round of picks should interest lovers of the noisier aspects of modern guitar, with releases by Hans Tammen and Reg Bloor dwelling largely in a world of pure sound, as well as Eivind Aarset fans who love to hear him in new contexts.
The weather outside is frightful but at GM it is so delightful because we have a festival of concerts by modern guitar pioneer David Torn, Jam Pedals founder Jannis Anastasakis, as well as Guitar Moderne Spotlight subjects Nicola L. Hein, Hans Tammen, and Martin Siewert. So snuggle up in your jammies and check them out.
Sun of Goldfinger in Schlachthof, Wels, Austria
David Torn (guitar, effects), Tim Berne (saxophone), Ches Smith (drums)
New York-based Hans Tammen expands on the vocabulary of tabletop guitar using his Max/MSP “Endangered Guitar” software. By designing his own software he is able to produce uniquely personal sounds, remains capable of intense collaboration. He has performed and taught around the world.