This leading US minimalist composer and filmmaker, presented his music and films simultaneously in a special concert. The films, made between 1973-1991, focus on labourers working in locations including Peru, Mexico, China and Japan. His slowly evolving music of long tones echoes the workers’ repetition, to create an otherworldly experience.
The evening includes Stosspeng, a guitar duet composed for Susan Stenger and Robert Poss. Inspired by Morton Feldman, La Monte Young and John Cale, Niblock’s work continues to influence a generation of musicians.
Phill Niblock is a New York-based minimalist composer, musician, filmmaker, and since 1985 director of Experimental Intermedia. Niblock came to New York in 1958, initially working as a photographer and filmmaker largely focused on documenting jazz musicians. His subsequent film work was the large-scale project The Movement of People Working, based on everyday work environments in rural environments across the world.
His first musical compositions date from 1968, influenced by the New York music scene in the 1960s and memorable performances such as the premieres of Morton Feldman’s durational pieces. His early works were all done with tape, overdubbing unprocessed recordings of precisely tuned long tones played on traditional instruments in four, eight, or sixteen tracks. Since the late 1990s his music has been created with computer technology, notably with Pro Tools, involving as many as forty tracks.
His compositional process often begins with recordings of single tones played by a specific musician. The range of musicians he has collaborated with include Susan Stenger, Petr Kotik, Robert Poss, Lee Ranaldo, Thurston Moore, Ulrich Krieger, Carol Robinson and many others. He has produced over 1,000 performances at Experimental Intermedia since 1973, including an annual six-hour event for the Winter Solstice. His work is available on the XI, Moikai, Mode Records, Extreme and Touch Music labels.
Curated and produced by AV Festival 12.