Alter Festival

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Alter 2020 was sadly cancelled due to Covid-19

Comprised of Colin Stetson on saxophones, Shahzad Ismaily on bass and synths, Greg Fox on drums and Toby Summerfield on guitar, Ex Eye perform powerful, cathartic music where the avantjazz tradition meets dark metal and contemporary electronics. Ex Eye makes music that will leave a lasting impression on you and your eardrums. Their roaring, metal-informed sound is the result of the immense force each player unleashes on their instruments but also of the intricate interplay at work in this unholy union.

 

Joining us this year will be the zestful techno duo Giant Swan and we are looking forward to them endowing our old county hospital with the bad brain cacophonous energy they are known for. Originated in Bristol England, Giant Swan is the brainchild of Robin Stewart & Harry Wright; an acerbic marriage of energised, aggressive dance music, quaking bass and hypnotic electronic noise.

Halvcirkel will be the opening act of Alter 2020, and we are very excited that these talented women will help us greet you this year. Formed in 2015 in Copenhagen, Halvcirkel have established themselves as a progressive string quartet, transgressing the presuppositions of classical music. Drawing from an extensive background in the classical tradition, the quartet expand minimalist and neoclassical compositions by a creative direction propelled by freeform improvisation as well as digital and spatial enhancements.

Klein’s music releases, films and performances have established her as a singular voice who uses disjunctive experimentalism to create a sensory world that melds popular reference points with personal associations.
Indeed, more so than any genre tag, ‘the uncanny’ is the key term with regards to Klein. Her tracks exist in liminal spaces - between harmony and dissonance, language and gibberish, the discernable experiments of artists like Rrose and Holly Herndon and the very fringes of the avantgarde.

The NYC based sound artist, composer and performer Lea Bertucci will be at Alter 2020. Beyond her extended instrumental practice, consisting primarily of woodwind instrument (alto saxophone and bass clarinet), she augments and produces sound through electroacoustic feedback, tape collages as well as an impressive ability to employ and implement her knowledge of psychoacoustics and microtonal dissonance. Emphasizing resonance beyond the mechanical Lea Bertucci’s performance will surely be a powerful perceptual event.

First conceived in an effort to make music ‘to drive at dusk to’ the Mols/Aarhus based band Nehoki has since moved beyond that simple, yet very valid aspiration, culminating in their genre-conflating debut album ‘Petersminde’. Implementing instrumental, electronic and sonic features denoting dub, jazz, post-rock, ambient and new age music into an improvised whole, Nehoki presents a soundscape that is textually and technically complex while still retaining an aspect of ‘easy-listening’ at its core. Nehoki consists of Asbjørn Elle, Magnus Krag, Rasmus Dahl Theisen, Milan Schwendson Zaks.


 

With hard pounding rhythms that seem endlessly infused with spiritual power, Nkisi denotes the magical in name and musical expression. Melika Ngombe Kolongo will be performing under the name Nkisi at Alter 2020 a project describes on her bandcamp as “a microcosmic encapsulation of melo-rhythmic trance”. With influences from hard electronic beats, from genres such as gabba, trance and dark Belgian techno, Nkisi’s music is urban and beyond - her aesthetic unmistakably evocative of the goetic. She is also the cofounder of the collective NON worldwide; a network of African and diaspora based artist, who seek to accentuate and upend invisible structures of domination.

Iranian composer Ata Ebtekar will be performing at Alter 2020 with his project Sote. Ebtekar transmutes traditional instrumental inputs into a heavy weighted electronic soundscape, synthesizing ancient Iranian folk music with the mathematically infinite of virtual sound design. Ebtekar is a key figure of the middle-eastern electronic scene with a career spanning three decades. Ebtekar digitally alters the modality of classical Persian instruments (the setar and the santur) while still conserving the original acoustics, evoking vivid connotations to the eternal and the divine.

Puce Mary is the solo moniker of Copenhagen based sound artist Frederikke Hoffmeier. Since her first LP released in 2013, the project has then explored the fields of industrial noise and experimental music with a vast amount of releases on labels as PAN, Posh Isolation, iDEAL Recordings and Ascetic House. ​With an already impressive discography and live career, Frederikke Hoffmeier has manifested herself as a key voice in new industrial music. With her most recent album for PAN, The Drought - Puce Mary broke new ground, evolving from the tropes of industrial and power electronics to forge a complex story of adapting to new realities. Remnants of noise still exist, sustaining the penetrative viscerality offered on previous records, however The Drought demonstrates an intention to expand on the vocabulary of confrontational music and into a grander narrative defined by technical and emotional growth.

The Copenhagen-based band Thulebasen plays experimental music, pushing the boundaries of the forever freaky. The band has undergone various transformations in terms of constellation and expression. The first record released by Thulebasen, Guitar Wand from 2008, featured compositions by guitarist and singer Nis Bysted, but Nis was quickly joined by Felia Gram-Hansen and Niels Kristian Eriksen. As a trio, Thulebasen began making alternative rock, denoting a candid willingness to improvise while still retaining a cohesive output. However, Thulebasen’s newest release, SUKO! from 2018, has a much rural and desolate sound. Ascertaining an expressive freeform with delicate sonic elements, evocative of everyday trance and the simple quietness of bucolic space.

Copenhagen-based composer and sound artist Xenia Xamanek has created a name for herself with her expressive style, and wired the underground scene for electronic music. Having studied the rules of composition and been formally trained on saxophone, Xenia Xamanek is an artist who is appealed to ignore all rules in order to approach her idiosyncratic style of music. She debuted in 2015 with “Men’s Health”, released under her previous alias Equis. Since then she has been involved in several collaborations and projects experimenting with site-specific sound art, audiovisuals performances and much more. Her second release “No plants : No life” from 2016, is a mixture of deconstructed techno, harsh noise and immersive ambient confirming the uniqueness of Xamanek’s sound. She released her first solo LP under the alias Equis, entitled “Sitios” on the Danish label Resonans Recording, in April 2018. Xamanek is a true contemporary hardware explorer who pushes her sound material in unusual ways.

Maria W Horn, Mats Erlandsson and David Granstöm are all part of the vibrantly reemerging field of drone music in Stockholm, Sweden, revitalizing practices characterized by the extensive use of sustained sound. Maria w Horn is interested in the manipulation of time and space through sonic extremes - oscillating between minimalist structures and piercing power electronics utilizing both digital and analog synthesis as well as acoustic instruments and audiovisual components. Mats Elandson likewise presents minimalist compositions that are texturally complex and sonically elaborate, displaying an ability to manipulate cold noise into evocative soundscapes. David Granstöm work is characterized by harmonic simplicity and spatiotextural complexity, employing sounds of both synthetic and acoustic origin. Part of Granström's practice consists in researching new methods for working algorithmically with real-time sound synthesis and precision-tuned harmony.  

With a background as a producer in the rap scene of Cairo, ZULI brings a coarse urban sound into an animated dark atmosphere fortified by samples and field recordings. The soundscape of ZULI is unnerving and suggestive of accumulated tension, however in between the organic layers of samples and beats, constantly deconstructing and reconstructing ethereal representation of a not so tangible reality, there lies an embroidery of delicate emotion.