Even more dramatically this artistic contribution of the technology involved in playing-apart-together showed up, like an imposed final signature, in the unPublic tetralogy that we did using a voice rooms in the VoIP application Discord. That was in April and May of 2020, in the days that world-wide the corona pandemic had reached its first peak.
Discord originally was especially popular in gamers’ communities, as a platform for discussing tricks, trades and strategies. It was not and is not intended (nor suitable, at least not in any ‘fidelity’ sense) for music streaming. The digital audio streams, sent and received by the participating ‘players’ in a ‘voice room’, are optimized for vocal exchange. The compression algorithms used by the software allow for no more than minimal ‘fine-tuning’.
And it is these algorithms that make Discord into an active and unpredictable—hence pretty interesting—fellow improviser. The application glitches just about everything that a player contributes from where she is performing, in real time, in front and around a laptop computer that runs Discord.
The resulting combined signal is radically different in each of the participants’ local voice rooms. Each of the different contributing locations is like a separate sonic world. We used this observed given to thus exploit numbers of different ‘cyber-projections’ of one and the same electro-acoustic improvisation. The projections are created simultaneously and exist in parallel. None of them is the true one; the sort of meta-piece behind it all remains elusive.
Each of our four discordant unPublic sessions explores this particular way of speculative playing-apart-together in a different way. From the superposed local recordings of uP #66 and uP#67, virtually connecting Washington DC, Zürich and Paris, the seven different projections which where the harvest of the virtual sonic linking of Vila do Conde (in Portugal), Vienna and Paris in uP #68, to the collaged packets cut-up of uP #69, a discordian tour of Manhattan in lockdown days, led by Leslie Singer (Girls on Fire), with real-time improvised sonic accompaniments brought in from Amsterdam and Paris.
Paris, December 2021
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The non-profit foundation Plus-X-Creative was founded in 2015 by three creatives from the Netherlands: J. Koolen (city council, banjo musician, Rotterdam), H. Kwee (photographer, Amsterdam) and X. Gottenkieny (musician & artist Rotterdam). They met during cultural events and shared the passion to perform and to spread music and art. With this foundation their main aim was to play an active and supporting role in building a platform for creative empowerment.
These are exciting but also challenging times for the creative entrepreneur. Apart from trying to keep up with the fast changing world of technology, we’ve seen the emergence of necessary initiatives such as the ‘Platform for freelance musicians’ and the ‘Fair Practice Code’. Inspired by these positive movements, we want to help stimulate the emancipation of the artist, musician, dancer, performer and many other creatives.. .
We focus on cross-border projects / platforms where different artists and media come together. We seek collaboration with organizations that work with groundbreaking (‘realtime’) software technology.. We invite musicians and artists to explore the possibilities of these platforms and to what extent it enables musicians in developing their professional practice. We challenge artists to experiment and create new work at an accessible level with innovative technology.. Now and in the future, we will be able to reach more places where music and art are less obvious.
On March the 8th we organized a special ‘Mesh it Up!’ edition at the MeshPrintClub. Besides fantastic concerts and performances given by Tinyloops & Monster 3D Incubator and Kanipchen Fit we also had a T-shirt competition! First prize shared winners were Margriet Killian and Juninho Wouter! The designs were printed by Eden Simhony.