In 2003, the inaugural Unsound music and visual arts festival took place in Krakow, Poland, with an emphasis on electronic music, and a domestic focus. In recent years, however, the festival has expanded in scope and ambition, first ballooning to a week-long, hundred-plus artist affair in Poland before expanding abroad to London, Adelaide, Minsk, and New York. The festival has developed into a hotbed for experimental composition, covering an impressively extensive range of avant-garde electronic music, from murky dub to goth-infused techno to chamber psychedelia. The oft-hallucinatory multimedia aspect of Unsound makes it not unlike an international, contemporary Exploding Plastic Inevitable. Even the failures are usually interesting, if only for their risk-taking uniqueness.
Now in its fourth year, Unsound New York starts today and runs through April 6th. The performances are spread across a number of venues in Brooklyn and Manhattan, including BAM, the Goethe-Institut, and First Unitarian Church. Performers include Inga Copeland, Håkon Stene, Wilhelm Bras and more. Ticket prices average between $5-$20 per show. The opening performance, tonight at Issue Project Room, is a live presentation on percussion and strings of “Knots” by the Australian composer Oren Ambarchi, a frequent collaborator of drone-doom band Sunn O))).
Check out the full calendar of performances here.
Follow Phillip Pantuso on Twitter @phillippantuso.