Thursday, July 3, 2014

this was tomorrow # ∞ - EMS and Fylkingen

"I myself wrote a manifesto... saying that Fylkingen should only play electronic music in the future, and totally leave the instrumental part of new music. Well, everything was very black and white at that time, and we had other organisations for new music here, so we thought they should take of that. There was a sense in Fylkingen that this was the future; and instrumental music was made and composed and listened to for totally other purposes than electronic music. We wanted to make a clean start"
       - Jan Morthenson, quoted in "Utopian Workshop", Frances Morgan's feature in the current issue of The Wire about Sweden's Elektronmusickstudion (EMS) and parent organisation Fylkingen.

Fascinating article, celebrating EMS's 50th birthday. I was familiar with quite a bit of the text-sound stuff created and released under the auspices of  EMS/Fylkingen, but not with the huge range of electro-acoustic and experimental music associated with the place. Nor was I aware that it was still such an active stronghold: on the one hand, a literally working museum (in the sense that contemporary musicians go there to use the strictly speaking outmoded but functioning machines of various developmental stages in the studio's history), on the other a laboratory for making new sound-generating set-ups or modifying older technology.

A good EMS sampler can be found on YouTube here

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