Most blog items now at GMM.IO
Posted Apr 11, 12:30 with tags

More and more of my work as a composer is not directly related to Ugress, which is why I'm now posting more regularly over at my composer website http://gmm.io/ 

 




The Bow Corpse at Samklangfunnet
Posted Mar 16, 07:52 with tags , , , ,

B20Workshop-021

Wednesday March 18th I present the music, concept and custom developed swarm simulator software behind The Bow Corpse (BIT20 Ensemble / Nattjazz 2015) at Samklangfunnet, an evening that explores the fusion between technology and music:

The technological evolution of the twentieth century has had an enormous impact on what it means to be a performing musician. Musicians from The Grieg Academy, The Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and The BIT20 Ensemble will explore some of the possibilities modern technology has provided musicians of our time.

This evening I will give an introduction to, insight into and part performance of the commissioned piece Bow Corpse, performed by BIT20 Ensemble, using swarm simulators to investigate the musical and sonic possibilities of big data and social media. This is the third “public beta” of the work before the full premiere at Nattjazz June 1st.

  • Samklangsamfunnet: Music and technology
  • Teglverket, Det Akademiske Kvarter, Bergen, Norway
  • Wednesday March 18th, 20:00
  • Official website event, Facebook event

 




Most Memorable Stuff Of 2014
Posted Dec 31, 13:09 with tags , , ,

 

 
DSC07150
 
 
This year my annual most memorable list of films, books, LPs and museums is over at my personal website




Login performances in Barcelona, December
Posted Nov 29, 11:51 with tags , ,

 Login-Mercat

Login premieres at Mercat De Les Flores, Barcelona, Dec 3rd, 2014.

Login is a contemporary dance piece dealing with our increasingly digital lives and consequences of existing in hyper-reality. What if our our digital reality breaks apart? The piece is by Catalunian choreographer Nuria Guiu Sagarra. I've created the music and sound design, and perform it live on stage. This is a continuation of our work from La Muda (2013).

The performance is at Mercat De Les Flores, a performing arts theatre in the center of Barcelona. This is part of the SALMON Festival for new European performance arts. We have two performances, Wednesday December 3rd at 19:30 and again Thursday December 4th at 19:30.




"Portal" pre-production, photos, report
Posted Jul 26, 12:01 with tags , , , , ,

 

Photos and a blog report from the last two week's pre-production of upcoming "Portal". 

 




Photos from Ugress, Real Ones, Bygdalarm
Posted Jul 7, 20:13 with tags , , , ,

 

Photos from the Ugress, Real Ones and tractors live performance at Bygdalarm.




Ugress Live: Bygdalarm - Real Ones, Tractors, Lasers
Posted Jul 2, 21:49 with tags , , , ,

 

Saturday July 5th, Ugress performs live at the Bygdalarm festival.

With tractors. And Real Ones. And lasers. And beautiful Norwegian fjords. And everything at the same time. Just very, very, loud. 

The tractor elements are based on the previous Tractor Symphony comission of 2010, now upgraded for a live, main-stage electro-folk experience. Also includes elements from the recent Sounds Of Hardanger.

  • Ugress, Real Ones
  • Tractors
  • Lasers
  • Bygdalarm
  • Main stage, 22:00, July 5th, 2014
  • Tickets, festival program page
  • Practical info

 





ROMA 2089 - Performance in Rome, June 24th
Posted Jun 19, 11:38 with tags , , , ,

Draculus Moria Promo 720

Rome, 2089. A new sonic universe, a lonely vampire, a pacifist gladiatrix, wild hanniphants.

Singing water fountains, metro tunnel choirs, glitchy trams, screaming bikes, lipstick clouds, auto-tuned hairdressers, distant cannons... The everyday sounds of Rome of 2014 becomes a musical expedition into a ficitional future Rome of 2089. A lonely vampire roams the empty streets, secretly in love. A gladiatrix fights to keep her sister out of human trafficking. Noisy grafitti trashes with ancient statues and modern street-art.

Moria

Norwegian composer Gisle Martens Meyer presents his work from a month's residency at Circolo Scandinavo in Rome, Italy. He records mundane and peculiar sounds from the city, turning them into expressive musical instruments. Using this "sonic orchestra" of Rome, he reveals a story of love, loneliness and survival in a strange, but recognizable city.

Dracu PreProd 1080p 50fps

Sound, music, live visual graphics. Expected duration 30 minutes, free entrace, simple refreshments. The artist presents his work and methods before the performance, and there is an open dialogue after the show.

  • ROMA 2089
  • Circolo Scandinavo, Via Della Lungara 231, 00165 Rome (map)
  • Tuesday, June 24th, at 21:00
  • Expected duration 30 minutes
  • Free entrance, simple refreshments




June Residency In Rome, Italy
Posted May 27, 18:31 with tags , , ,

I'm staying in Rome, Italy for all of June, a residency at Circolo Scandinavo. Through the stay I will create a work, to be presented at the end. The process is documented with daily notes.

Rome was a beautiful, post-apolyptic ruin already centuries ago. Way before being abandoned was cool.

This is going to be awesome. 




Report: Only Connect 2014, J. G. Ballard
Posted May 26, 16:40 with tags , , , , , , ,
 
Expedition report from Only Connect Festival of Sound 2014, Oslo. A festival inspired by the ideas of British author J. G. Ballard. I attended and we performed the Ugress Kids set there, exposing young minds to music made with (or in spite of) unruly machines. 
 
I was not supposed to move at all this spring because I'm working on upcoming stuff, but J.G. Ballard is a very important writer to me. When I learned that also the late Jon Bing was involved in creating this festival, I simply could not say no. Both of these authors influenced me deeply at a very young age. Bing's series of books on the library starship Alexandria (bringing information and knowledge to remote solar systems) was my first exposure not only to science fiction but also to the concepts of knowledge and information as treasured resources. Ballard's Empire Of The Sun I read very young, and secured an early fascination for abandond-ness; not only abandoned spaces but also abandoned beings. And I just had a Ballard book marathon last summer. So, with my incredible negotiation skills I managed to convince the festival to host me for multiple days. 
 
A report!
 
 
Immediately upon staring his adventure, your correspondent was caught up in the information architecture of security and technology. This correspondent did not have enough coffee in the morning so he walked into the wrong lane at Tegel airport, or actually he walked into something that was not a lane, but the area for operating the screening equipment. The guards caught on long before I did, cleverly quick waving me in, and they had me screen my own carry-on, looking for explosives.
 
"Press this button!" - "Can you see any explosives in your bag?" I was so confused. Do I have to screen my own bags now? Thats so absurd! Then everyone started laughing their batons off and gingerly sent me back through the right lane. How eternally embarrassing, but at least I got to check out the UI of the röntgen machine. It's a touch pad, with lots of icons that looks like Windows 3.11 and the touch response is really awful. I had to really hammer the icons. No wonder those guys are grumpy some days. 
 
 
Without further adventure, arrived to Oslo just in time to catch Stian Westerhus performing his Impossible Metallic Slaughterhouse in the parking garage under Oslo Konserthus. This was a perfect start, and set the right tone of sound and venue that lasted throughout the festival. I loved his distorted soundscapes, and the venue was impeccable. Endless highway traffic passing by in the background, car-alarms going off to the bass pulses, families with kids and overfilled shopping carts confusedly getting into their Volvos accompanied by bowed metal drones and glitchy loops. Loved it.
 
 
After this, several great musical performances in Diorama, an old club across the street, underneath the Stenersen Museum. Again a perfect visual setting, my favorite part of the evening was the Kode9 set late at night, with loud brilliant rhythms and spicy, futurist sound editing and mixing. I hung out by the wall kind of spacing out, drifting away into the sounds and watching fragments of endless traffic through slits in the glass mosaic wall. Much appreciated ballardian end of an evening.
 
 
After this I just roamed lazily through the streets of Oslo back to the hotel, looking at architecture and the city as a space, with the rhythms and sounds still lingering. I have often found Oslo cold, hard and alien in it's architecture; tonight this was a feature not a bug.
 
The next day, Friday, I had everything at the hotel for breakfast. The bacon would NOT be approved in Britain. It was NOT approved by ME. This was maybe the only non-ballardian experience of the festival. But, I like coffee machines that WORK HARD IN ALL CAPS. 
 
 
 
Then I printed stuff in the lobby. I have discovered the curve representing "stuff to print" and the curve representing "staying in hotels" aligns pretty neatly, so I don't need a printer I just print whenever I'm in lobbies. There's usually more coffee too and friendly people in uniforms who calls taxis for you so I pretend it's my office with three secretaries, they're SO busy all the time so I must be really successful.
 
 
Then there was a tech check at the venue of all the equipment since my stuff is spread all over, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that I had managed to organize everything arriving correctly. I gave myself 5 stars for tour administration and then it started to rain so hard Oslo would very quickly be the setting of The Drowned World.  
 
 
With my urban ninja baldachin location expertise I managed to get from Kunstnernes Hus to Oslo Kunsthall OUTDOORS without getting wet, just in time for the Muffled Ciphers performance by Langham Research Centre. THAT I found really beautiful, maybe the most interesting and wonderful music performance of the festival. I loved the tiny sounds and measured performance and the real sounds of cassette tapes being swapped. Clickety clack click. EJECT cassette is my favorite button ever. The slower it ejects, the better.  
 
 
Standing completely still on a concrete floor for one hour was NOT a wonderful experience though, but quite possible gave the perfect Concrete Island touch.  
 
After Kunsthall there were short films of Swedish-Portuguese director Solveig Nordlund, amongst them a portrait and interview of Ballard himself, and this segment was possible the best experience of the whole festival. I have read a lot of Ballard but never known much about him as a person, and getting this glimpse of him as a reflected and vulnerable being that I very much could identify with, re-enforced my respect for him.
 
 
The interview with Nordlund after her films was also very rewarding, she seemed like a wonderful and clever person too. The cinema program was finished with a percussion piece Procession and Drought by composer Øyvind Mæland, performed by Pinquins. There was a part of shimmering, cloudy mutes, muffles and un-mutes of cymbals that I really loved. Like a rain of machines with low self-esteem trying to dance but the Youtube clip instructing them is constantly buffering.  
 
 
Then change of location again, towards the luxury hotel The Thief at this bling part of Oslo that I can't wait until gets abandoned or goes underwater but until then I'm probably not going to go there often. The venue was at the top roof terrace, sadly I was late due to lack of proteins that had to be replenished and I missed the first musical performance, but nevertheless - I met a bunch of really great people, talking books and films and sci-fi and abandond-ness and influences and throughout the evening DJ Strangefruit provided a superb set of music. When he dropped in a track from Carpenter's Escape From New York I stood in a quiet corner of the rainy roof terrace, looking at the blurry, Scandinavian summer night view of Oslo, new friends discussing alternate history novels in the distance and wished there were more festivals like these.  
 
 
And of course hotel security didn't like the level of the music and created the most perfect High Rise moment when luxury hotel security suits are arguing with indie art festival administration about sound levels during Blade Runner end titles. 
 
 
Then, work. Saturday morning, up unspeakably early, not eat everything at the buffet, avoid the bacon, get to venue, sound-check, wait time, perform, battle, sample, win, dance with kids, rig down, pack, run, trains, airports, non-places, the sudden silence of not being somewhere anymore. Might have done this a few times before.
 
 
An animated GIF says more than your life passes by 24 times in a pixel pr second.
 
Expedition conclusion: Success. 




Animated GIF Report: Ugress Kids
Posted May 25, 14:06 with tags , , ,

 

Ugress Kids, live at the Only Connect festival, Kunstneres Hus, Oslo, May 2014.




Experiment: Parked Conversations
Posted May 15, 13:00 with tags , , , ,

Parked Conversations - tiny stories happening in our pockets.

Research video experiment, using tracking and on-screen messages. I'm currently trying out various techniques for integrating and revealing digital content in the real world. 




How I am (ab)using the violin
Posted Apr 19, 17:08 with tags , ,

A two minute video, how I am using an electronic violin as a sound source.

With programming I can externally control the pitch of the string before post-processing, leaving me to use one hand creating source sounds on the violin, and the laptop handles pitch and processing which I can then further manipulate with another hand. I do not have any ambitions to play it traditionally, I find it more interesting as a texture source.

(I forgot to mention in the video; of course on stage or in recordings you don't hear the original pitch of the acoustic string vibrating, as you do in the room in the video.) 

I started using the violin for last years Nebular Spool project, where it mostly worked as an offline sound source for creating sounds for further processing. But I really liked playing on it, and for the Jeanne D Arc silent movie performances I brought it on stage with me. It takes a bit of planning and progamming, but once all is set up I can concentrate on dynamics and texture and realtime manipulation of my own playing.

Here's a pop-surrealist example of a track using only the violin, a B4 plugin, beats and voice processing.

This one was done with an acoustic violin last summer. I would prefer to use an acoustic violin, the sound possibilities are so great, the wooden body is highly sensitive, every part of the violin can be touched/manipulated and used for live sound creation, but for the same reason, the sensitive body is really loud by itself, and also easily picks up other sounds on a stage, the electric version is a bit more practical to "hide" the original source sonically. 

I am also (ab)using the violin for an upcoming project with Portuguese choreographer Gui Garrido, you can see it in action in this video report from our recent work in Lisbon. 

 




Work In Process: Live Music videos with Gui Garrido
Posted Apr 19, 17:04 with tags , , , , ,

A one minute music and video report from work with portuguese choreograph Gui Garrido in Lisbon, March 2014.

We’re working on a top secret project for 2015, the concept of realtime music videos.

Live on stage, we want to recreating the eternal surfing of Youtube music video experience, CLICK and you are somewhere else, with ourselves as the performing band and the Youtube video-makers at the same time.

We spent two weeks writing music, recording tracks, trying out various techniques, ideas, prototypes for stage performance. We now have a bunch of great tracks with various themes and concepts for performing, and currently working on raising funding.

Lisbon01 Lisbon02 Lisbon03 Lisbon04 Lisbon05 Lisbon06

 




Live: The Sound Of Hardanger, March 22
Posted Mar 20, 23:02 with tags , , ,

Expedition time. March 22nd I perform the comissioned work "The sound of Hardanger" at Oslo Konserthus. 

For the constitutional anniversary I did a musical work based on everyday sounds from the Hardanger region in Western Norway. I spent some time in the region last summer recording sounds, and then building a digital orchestra representing the sounds to compose a work. This was presented as online music videos back in January, and this Saturday I will perform a live visual version, as part of the anniversary opening galla.

  • Opening galla, "Hardanger i hundre"
  • Oslo Konserthus, Munkedamsveien 14, Oslo
  • Starts at 19:00 

For more information see the Hardanger 2014 website