Berlin’s legendary minimal dub artist Pole creating a track with a Belarus traditonal folk singer? Swiss producer of club music Kadebostan and Minsk string improv group Rational Diet creating an “Eastern European digital big band”? Polish minimal musician Jacek Sienkiewicz making a track using words from a Belarus poet? Bristol dubstep pioneer Pinch finding inspiration on the streets of this largely unknown capital?
In a project that is anything but run-of-the-mill, Berlin’s scape records and Krakow’s Unsound have joined forces to take a group of western electronic and experimental musicians to the capital of Belarus, Minsk. There, towards the end of September (22nd – 28th), they will work on collaborative projects with local musicians and music producers.
The project is the next step in links Unsound and local Minsk organizers IN-Touch have built over the past 18 months, forging connections between west Europe and Belarus via innovative music in both countries. A follow up visit of Belarus producers to the home cities of some of the western Europeans will follow, with their collaborative efforts collected on a CD to be mastered by none other than Stefan Betke (Pole) himself, and released as a free download.
Other participants from west Europe include Hanno Leichtmann from Berlin (Static, The Vulva String Quartet, Groupshow), who intends on connecting traditional Belarus sounds and electronic music. Italian Kassian Troyer will make field recordings of Minsk itself to create a headphone sound installation, and Herman Muetzing, from Sweden, will bring his self-made instrument by train all the way from Copenhagen to make experimental tracks with local experimental music legend (and Minsk Unsound organizer) Vlad Buben.
Apart from working on the collaborative projects, West European artists will also give studio workshops.
“Connections” will include an Unsound event on the 27th at a Minsk club, Fabrique, where an array of Belarus artists will perform, as well as visiting Ukrainian producers Andrej Kirichenko and Denis Kolokol.
Berlin’s Club Transmediale are partners on the project, and the main funder is the European Cultural Foundation (ECF). Additional support comes from Minsk Goethe Institute, Minsk Polish Institute, Swedish Institute and Pro Helvetia.