Wednesday, September 28, 2016

World tour review: Rotterdam, Den Haag, Groningen

14.09 Rotterdam, City Art gallery

Never been in Rotterdam. The venue is nice and quite big gallery in 3 floors, full of metal sculptures made by owner Chris Ripken, also many drawings. We talked a bit about the history of this place and the future. Seems like the future is a bit hazy, cause the local government wanna close it. Hope this won't happen and meantime I was glad to perform there. On the bill also trio of butoh dancers Konpaku. Interesting combination. 
So, for the show I got a bit vintage speakers and amplifier, which sounded not so powerful and at times it felt really weak, so my show this time was a bit more calm I would say, more atmospheric, the way I usually do in gallery type of spaces. 
Konpaku dancers started by lying on the ground and moving slowly as the music background was evolving. White painted faces, black and red/brown dressing, mimics and again strange movements. I probably didn't get the idea of what was it all about, but no problem, just took at as visual happening - hallucination. 
This was the first time I've seen something like that after local artist Benas Šarka, so this was not a wow thing, but I'm looking forward to explore it more in occasion. 
In general it was a nice evening, with not so many people, but was glad to see at least 3 Lithuanian guys ; )

16.09 Den Haag, Villa te Koop

I've never had a show in the house were I basically live. So I just had to go downstairs, to the basement and am at the show place. What a comfort! So i'm staying here basically the whole time till my journey to S. America. Vaida, the host of the show was stressed that we will loose audience, because the other place did another experimental music night. This made me stress a bit too, so I called some lithuanians, and luckily a dozen of around 10 came. So, the room was full. Good.

That Black performing
The show was started by the short theremin improvisation by Spanish man Biyi Amez. Then german guy Emerge continued. Playing by two samplers and some acoustic amplified objects he did some slow strokes on delay plus some dark drones, which after a while got a bit boring, but then the same theremin guy joined by bringing some variety, some brighter colors, though it was quite long, so a few people left the room, and later me. 

The next was That Black - ukrainian guy who is living now in Moscow and who is just starting the production of very interesting and powerful synths, which seems like soon gonna be famous. So he came on his first EU tour. Quite excited and enjoying. His show at Villa was the top of the night. Using the body and gear on his body, he did a plastic performance with steps-beats, atmospheric noises-hands and voice. It was really powerful, plus he was turning around almost all the time as new techno sufi. In the end maybe I wanted to hear some new sounds, as those were already predictable, but in general he made this night. 

My show wasn't so good this time, although reactions were not bad really, but somehow I felt that things are not going so well when playing, but maybe it's just my self-criticism
Anyway the room was full and all were happy about this event. 

17.09 Groningen, Il sole in Cantina

After long delays on Flix bus (be careful with this company) I finally reached Groningen at 9pm. Luckily the show is only at midnight even if I don't like to play so late ; ). My dutch friend Resonan, with whom we are communicating, trading  records for more than 10 years, met me and then we met Leonardo from Il Sole in Cantina. He's italian guy and from the very first moment I felt high energy and it kept being like this the whole evening. Leo brought us to the host place were I met Davide, the owner of the venue and his woman Lia and some other people. All were either Italian or Portuguese and I was so glad to see Southern people here in Northern city of Netherlands.

The venue is the nice clean basement which exists almost 20 years! The ceiling though is so small that at first I felt a bit claustrophobic, but then I got used to it. Was also a bit worried about small speakers, but Leo said, don't worry they are very powerful. 
I was the only one that night on the bill. Usually like when someone local is for the warm up, but all warm-heat thing was in my hands. And I did it. Everyone seem that enjoyed. Two girls came up after the show and said it was like on drugs, on a peak. They couldn't say what kind of drugs it were, something like ecstasy, but not... ;) .one of them also said that she will take interview with me. Leo gave also some interesting thoughts about what I do and this is what I need besides all the usual "nice show", "great performance", or silence which means I sucked ;)
There were not so many people at the show, something between 10 and 20 I guess, but there was at least one Lithuanian guy, which is good ;) 
Anyway I had a really great time in Groningen and really gonna come back there one day. Here are 29 seconds of the show which was streamed by the way.

Soon reviews from Munster and Ghent shows. Thank you for reading,

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

World tour review: Copenhagen, Bremen, Enschede

I was preparing for this big tour since early spring, did a proper work on shows and managed to have a not very tight but quite intense schedule, max 3 shows in a row. This also spiritual journey. I've totally gave myself to the destiny (but then am I not doing this in the time I'm not touring?..Hm).
Anyway now residing comfortably in The Hague at my friend Vaida, who is also hosting show here on Friday (details in the end), but first 3 days of the tour were quite adventurous and not so comfortable. I have never performed in 3 festivals in 3 days, but time has come. ;) Thank you all the organizers for inviting me!

08.09 Copenhagen, Sonic festival                   
Always hard to sleep when you have a flight in the morning. So the morning in Vilnius was quite early and full of rush. The equipment and all the necessary stuff is about 33 kilograms: 21kg on my back and 12kg in the hand, so at first it was really hard to move, especially when it's still the summer weather. 
I didn't take any food even if I knew that danish prices are high, so by the arrival to Copenhagen I got hungry, but luckily just before coming to the hostel I found two sandwiches in a paper bag near the ticket machine in metro station. As a poor Eastern European guy who used to live in Berlin squats and do dumpster diving, I took, but only one, not two, cause the other looked not so good. So this was my lunch. 
Arrived to the venue to do the soundcheck. Beautiful venue - Literature house. Quite spacious hall with high ceiling, small round red tables and candles. Really fits for readings and for improvised  / avant music of course. The soundcheck went well, the sound was good. Later was kebab time and meeting old Lithuanian friends. 
Gunnar performing
The show started from the guy named Gunnar Gunnsteinsson (initially from Reykjavik, but living in Amsterdam), who did a spoken word narrative - music exercise - techno - synth pop - philosophical performance. This was fun to watch and made me curious to explore more of his art.
Then I was supposed to play after him, but the organizers told that it would be technically better if I play the last. Ok, so then was a turn of  Tinna Thorsteinsdóttir 
She did a few minimal piano pieces following the projected abstract scores. This was atmospheric, and after the energetic show by Gunnar it was a bit too silent maybe, though it gave the concentration, which I thought would be good for my show. So my turn came up. I've started to play and I felt like something is wrong. I didn't hear many things. I felt like being without balls. Low frequencies were cut, so basically my playing was about getting out of the situation. First part was chaotic, but on the second I went to ambient field, cause I felt this was the only possible way to do something in this situation. And it worked, I guess...but i wasn't satisfied.
The first event of 3 days ended. My friend Arturas Bumšteinas had to play here on Saturday, plus some other interesting acts, but the next day I had to go to Bremen.

Arrived in the evening, was met by Yen, who runs the great event organization Die Chinesische Wascherei which I knew for a few years. I always liked the program they present and the design.
So this is punky mini festival of two nights at Die Friese - good DIY feeling venue, with good sound system, kitchen, studio, etc. I was between Pisse and Hammerhead and Worlds Dirtiest Sport.
First was WDS - songs made by looped guitars, beats + vocal. It was not the best sound, was hard to hear details so wasn't so enjoyable, though now listening on a bandcamp I hear good, very American experimentao / rock stuff, so to say. Check it.
Next was Pisse. High energy new punk with theremin and synths. Great band. I heard lithuanian promoters are planning to bring them to Vilnius, so I imagine really good show at XI20 venue.

photo from Bremen show
Next - me. Did a line check. All good. Powerful sound. So did quite intense, high energy show. The punky crowd seemed enjoyed it, so as me. There might be a video later from one lithuanian guy whom I met before the show. So glad to meet everywhere people with whom I can speak mother tongue! ;)
Hammerhead - didn't listen to them. Preferred just to meditate in silence somewhere on the street a bit further from the venue.
So all went good. In general I always like to play the second show on the tour, cause if I do any mistakes on the first, I know what I shouldn't do on the second. And on the 3rd one in a row I usually don't have enough energy to do what I did on the first and the second one. ;)
Here are some photos from the show.

10.09 Enschede, Gogbot festival

When to sleep at 2am, but at 6am sms from Flixbus company woke me up, telling that my bus to Osnabruck (from where I have to take a train to Enschede) is delayed for 2 hours. 2 hours! So it means that I miss my train. So ok, but I still get on time, and they wrote that they will give a voucher for a free ride around Europe. Ok! ;)
So the bus was even more than 2 hours late and then we got into the traffic jam in the autobahn, from which the driver went out to the villages and at one point we stopped, didn't understand why and then the bus stuck between the trees. !!!. ; ) that was 10-15 minutes try to get out of it, back to the road... crazy ; ) anyway we reached Osnabruck. I took a train, didn't book a new ticket, but nobody checked. Lucky! More, I met Dan Mullin on the train to Enschede as we agreed before that we will meet. We were in touch for a few years, trading records. So finally we met. His project is Ohmtron Seedling.
Gogbot is the biggest art, music and technology event in the Netherlands, as they claim. And I was glad to be a part of it! Of course when I saw that I will have to play on a public space, I was a bit worried as I'm not so used to play for not prepared audience especially outside, where it's harder to concentrate. Anyway I had fun playing totally improvised set, with no prepared tracks. There were some ups and downs, some technical problems, real alive thing. Kids dancing. There was both positive and negative (of course!) feedback from the audience. See the video below and decide yourself. Also here's the write up about the show by Dan. 
The next day together with the local sound-visual artist Bernd we went to see the festivals exhibition. This was really impressive. I tried the glasses of virtual reality, saw robots and interesting audiovisual installations. This was the most impressive exhibition I've seen in many years, although I'm not that big fan of exhibitions, especially when you live in small town and you know the limits of that local art, but this was yeah.. impressive.
So, first shows are over, I'm curious what awaits me this week as it's 4 shows in a week starting from Rotterdam, friday Den Haag, saturday Groningen and sunday Munster

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

World Tour crowdfunding campaign

Today I've started indiegogo campaign to raise funds for my up-coming tour in South America, Asia and Europe. I need money basically for travel expenses (flights, buses, trains) and for food. 
So please support in any way!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Sodų 4 event documentation

Date: 09.08.2016, facebook event
Venue: Sodų 4, Vilnius, Lithuania
Format: solo performance / exhibition
Documentation: photos by Samanta Matu below, video here   


Thursday, July 28, 2016

summer activities

This summer started with a tour in Ukraine in June. July was empty with events, so that gave me extra time for planning autumn tour and working on new recordings. By the way two new tracks are already on soundcloud.
August has quite many activities. Firstly the special solo event was planned Vilnius, which will consist of exhibition, performance and dance at the space Sodų 4. This is announced already and currently all my thoughts are abour this.
Also suddenly I've got two invitations two perform in open air festivals in Lithuania. This is quite a surprise!
So, 6th of August - Ont Grindų - the festival of extreme guitar and drums based music, gonna do some fun there and 13th of August - ASAP - the event organized by STRCamp crew, so I expect some interesting music there and good crowd.
More.. in the second part of August I will take part in the artist residency (first one ever!) in the center of Lithuania, Raseiniai district. Together with some other artists we will be producing an absurd operetta, which we gonna show in Raseiniai contemporary art festival in the end of the summer.
So, by looking above, seems like the new working season is starting, so I wish for myself big enthusiasm and good mood ;)

photo: Milos Nesic

Monday, July 11, 2016

new on booking: OAK BIRCHES - free jazz from Lithuania

Oak Birches even from the title cause lot of questions about the content. Being self ironic and equipped with wide range of knowledge of both academic and jazz music, Trio developes it’s own sound. The conception swings between minimalism to stormy breakouts of open improvisation and precisely composed passages, creating multi-laered and spell bingind music. Each member of trio contributes his ideas equally, with strong sense of intellectual background and personal creativity. Oak Birches usually tours as trio, but the very premier concert in Kaunas was presented in format of Tentet, including such instruments as French horn, sousaphone, double drum section to name a few and dressed up in performative almost theatrical form.

for bookings: email


Nerijus Ardzevičius
Founding himself equally well in playing as in teaching, he has a role of lecturer in Kaunas Music Academy. His classical education opens in new way in improvised music.

Arnas Mikalkėnas
He starts from degree in classical accordion, conducting, and jazz piano, now teaches in Kaunas Conservatory. Arnas is on of the most active free music players in Lithuania. He acts as band leader, composer, recently he is working with theatre music and performance art.

Tomas Razmus
One of the most innovative musicians of his generation, who took part in numerous projects in free avant-garde, improvised music projects as well as in mainstream, big band jazz ensembles including Bob Mintzer, Lasse Lindgren, Jukka Linkola, Liudas Mockunas, Vladimir Chekasin, Kenny Wolesen, Francesco Angiuli to name a few.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Ukraine links

updated June 2016

Bodraja Korova - promoter, Khmelnyckiy
Creative Jazz Fans - promoter, Zaporizhia
Dasein - label, Donetsk
Dzestra - promoter,  Chernivtsi
Freak Friendly DIY - label, promoter, Kiev
More music club - promoter, Odessa 
Nexsound - label, Kiev
Pincet - label and promoter, Ternopil
Sentimental - label, Kiev / Dnipro
Taqueot - label, Dnipro
Quasi pop - label, Kiev
We have no Zen! - netlabel, Dnipro
Ухо - promoter, Kiev
Щыл - label, Kiev

Construction - festival, Dnipro
Cow Art  - festival, Khmelnyckiy
Hamselyt - festival, Ternopil
Next Sound - festival, Kiev

Baron Munhauzen - Kamianets Podolskij
Art Kvartira - Dnipro
BrDcK - Ivano Frankivsk
Kontrapunkt - Kiev
Maxwell - Kalush
Mezzanine - Kiev
Outsider - Uzhgorod
R/RT pub - Khmelnyckiy
Underground - Lviv

Art-cluster RND - media / sound artist collective
Dzyga - conglomeration of artists, different cultural projects, Lviv
Fredra.61 - event organization, Lviv
Izolyatsia - platform for cultural initiatives, Kiev
Kultura Medialna - media art events, Dnipro
Pup Zemli - event information recourse

*want me to add something? just let me know