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21 August 2013

It's time we talked about music...

It's time we talked about music...

The lack of any regular discussion about sound art and related experimental music in Melbourne has bothered me for a long time. As someone who has been active in the experimental music scene since the 1990s, I've long felt any discourse on music has become something akin to a taboo.

Greg Wadley (who runs the Spill label and performs in the Hi God-People) and I wanted to address this, and put on a series of events where discussion of the ideas and issues around cutting edge music could be explored with the audience.

The result is 'More Talk, Less Action', a series of six events hosted by West Space Gallery in Melbourne. Each instalment explores a different theme relevant to contemporary performance of sound art and other cutting edge music, and features a discussion panel populated by artists and others working in the field.

The first instalment's theme is 'Why Noise? The aesthetics of noise and "wrong" sound'. The discussion panel features Linda Kouvaras (author of the recent book Loading the silence: Australian sound art in the post-digital age), John Nixon (visual artist and leader of the noise collective, the Donkey's Tail), and Mark Groves (noise musician and member of the Sabbatical collective). There will also be performances from Groves and the Donkey's Tail.

I asked my co-organiser, Greg Wadley, to put to words his thoughts on why we need something like More Talk, Less Action:

'Clinton and I share a common interest in Australian underground and experimental music, which has involved playing, producing and documenting music over a period of many years. This series reflects our passion for the interesting music being made in Australia and beyond', Greg says.

'The series is also about exploring possibilities for the presentation of music and especially for how audiences can engage in music', he explains. 'Live music needs a broader range of settings than pub-rock and the concert hall. Traditional venues foster passive and even alienated audiences. Coming from the indie tradition I know that pub gigs are inevitably late, loud, and oriented to alcohol. They don't encourage participation, conversation or reflection.'

With More Talk, Less Action, Greg and I want audiences to get involved in the discussion, and encourage them to think about music differently. It's not all 'talk', of course. Each event will also include performances or installations relevant to the topic.

More Talk, Less Action kicks off on Thursday 22 August 2013 at West Space Gallery in Melbourne from 7:30pm. The full schedule is available on the AMC Calendar and at http://moretalk.org.

Event details - AMC Calendar

22 August 2013 at 7:30pm (Nixon, the Donkey's Tail, Groves, Kouvaras, moderated by Green)
31 August 2013 at 1pm (Haco, Verhagen, Hannan, moderated by Samartzis - co-presented with Liquid Architecture)
19 September 2013 at 7:30pm (Pulseford, Kidney, Williams, Hi-God People, moderated by Wadley)
3 October 2013 at 7:30pm (Althoff, Cooper, Cannon, Bent Leather Band, moderated by Green)
5 December at 7:30pm (Stelarc, Burt, and Doornbusch, moderated by Wadley)

Further links

More Talk, Less Action (http://moretalk.org)
Loading the Silence - the genesis of a book project - a blog article on Resonate by Linda Kouvaras (16 May 2013)

Subjects discussed by this article:


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