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zeitkratzer is sound made visible, tangible, bodily—a corporal live music experience. The physicality of sound is celebrated through extended instrumental techniques, a deep understanding of the musical material, and amplified traditional instruments. It will make you expect more from music than you ever did!

zeitkratzer is perverting musical genres. Keiji Haino meets Karlheinz Stockhausen meets Laurie Anderson meets folk music meets Whitehouse meets Serbian war songs meets Terre Thaemlitz meets Iannis Xenakis meets Lou Reed meets The Shape Of Jazz To Come meets Arnold Schönberg. The joy of the intensity of sound and music: a challenge to both composers and non-academic noise-makers from the most talented performers, improvisers, sound artists and composers around.

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(C)2016 Johan Coudoux

zeitkratzer is a soloist ensemble. Its strength comes from its members. Founded in 1999, it gathers nine musicians and lighting and sound engineers living in different European cities — from Berlin to Palermo, from Belgrade to Oslo — meeting all over the world to work together. zeitkratzer benefits from its outstanding musicians, their advanced and unique playing techniques, their rich and multifaceted musical experience and varied backgrounds: contemporary music, noise, the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, improvised music, experimental rock, ambient, folk music, industrial, early music…

zeitkratzer is independent from music institutions. The ensemble finances itself through free projects and touring internationally. This freedom facilitates the idiosyncratic and groundbreaking repertoire that has made zeitkratzer internationally recognized. Faithful only to their own tastes and beliefs, they have established themselves to be one of the most intriguing ensembles to collaborate with. Musicians who have worked with zeitkratzer include: Lou Reed, Alvin Lucier, Keith Rowe (AMM), Mario Bertoncini (nuova consonanza), Jim O’Rourke, James Tenney, Merzbow, Zbigniew Karkowksi, Keiji Haino, Marcus Schmickler, Alvin Curran (musica elettronica viva), Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth), Laurie Anderson, Elliott Sharp...

zeitkratzer is driven by unique concert programs. Blocks of repertoire created by the ensemble can function either separately or mixed together. From the Volksmusik of the Danube, reminiscent of waltzes and zithers, to Xenakis [A]Live! an homage to the great composer with a paraphrase of his “Persepolis”; the [electronics] series, including music by and with Keiji Haino, Terre Thaemlitz, Carsten Nicolai and William Bennett of Whitehouse; the [old school] series, dedicated to the new music of John Cage, James Tenney and Alvin Lucier; Noise with Merzbow, Keiji Haino and Zbigniew Karkowski; idiosyncratic songs for soprano and ensemble; and the famous Metal Machine Music by Lou Reed, guitar feedback transcribed for amplified traditional instruments. zeitkratzer is touring worldwide and performing at renowned festivals from Tokyo to Madrid, Rome and London to Vienna, Paris and Budapest to Berlin.

zeitkratzer is not worried about preserving the “purity” of new music. Music, especially so-called new music, thrives on continuous contamination. The idea of “pure taste” as an independent aesthetic category was revealed by Pierre Bourdieu to be a medium of social distinction. “Thus, pure taste is based on nothing else but a rejection or rather disgust for the objects that ‘force us to enjoy’, such as disgust for such crude, vulgar taste that is also appealing in this forced enjoyment.”

zeitkratzer is serious music full of joy!