Category Archives: Releases

“Sieben Entrückte Lieder (Seven Enraptured Songs)” Vorfeld/Scott/Gratkowski

VSG a2044575474_10

Michael Vorfeld – percussion
Richard Scott – modular synthesizer
Frank Gratkowski – contrabass clarinet, Bb clarinet, alto saxophone

Three of Berlin’s most celebrated improvising musicians came together in 2015 and established an instant rapport as evidenced by these recordings and by sparking, crackling concerts in underground Berlin venues such as NK, Studio 8 and Loophole.

This post-Echtzeit trio express much of what is interesting and refreshing about the current Berlin scene, which is so very different from just a few years ago. Nothing is forbidden; passages of noisy spectral beauty, free jazz, agitated textures of contemporary composition, moments of “Echtzeitmusik” stillness and “English” free improvisation flow seamlessly and without contradiction. The music is open and truly improvised, perpetually able to change direction without obvious rules or adherence to any idiom. The three musicians move between such modalities in a way that is fluent and fluid rather than eclectic or impatient. Like the city itself, the music seems able to embrace many truths and perceptions simultaneously, without wanting or needing to choose one to live by.

The music’s evident ambition is turned away from displays of technique and virtuosity and instead is directed towards infinitely more precious qualities: a virtuosity of listening, curiosity and playfulness, and a great pleasure in the collective embracing of the flux and flow of the musical moment.

Michael_solo_webMICHAEL VORFELD – percussion
Michael is a musician and visual artist based in Berlin who plays percussion and self-designed string instruments and realises electro-acoustic sound pieces. He works in the field of experimental, improvised music and sound art. He realises installations and performances with light and sound, photography and film. Besides his solo activities he is a member of various ensembles and collaborates with artists who work in many different art forms. His list of activities includes numerous concerts, performances and exhibitions in Europe, America, Asia and Australia.

gratkowski04FRANK GRATKOWSI – contrabass clarinet, bass clarinet, Bb clarinet, alto saxophone
Frank has worked as a soloist in various international formations (Grubenklang Orchester, Apartment House, Musikfabrik NRW, BikBentBraam, Zeitkratzer, WDR Orchestra, WDR Big band, Münchener Kammerorchester etc). Since 1990 he has been giving solo performances throughout Europe, Canada and the USA. With his first solo programme, “Artikulationen”, he was a 1991 prizewinner in the Musik Kreativ contest. Since 1992 he has been working in a duo with the pianist Georg Graewe, which is often extended through the participation of different additional musicians, such as drummer Paul Lovens and bassist John Lindberg. He has played at nearly every German and numerous international jazz and new music festivals, including Vancouver, Toronto, Chicago, New York, Seattle, Quebec, Les Mans, Mulhouse, Groeningen, Nickelsdorf, Barcelona, Lithuania, Warsaw, Zagreb, Prague, Bratislava, Sofia, Bucharest, Odessa, Belgrade, Madrid, Barcelona, Gothenburg, Huddersfield, London and Rome. He has performed with Robert Dick, Phil Wachsmann, Radu Malfatti, Herb Robertson, Marcio Mattos, Eugenio Colombo, Peter Kowald, Ray Anderson, Michael Moore, Ken Vandermark, Greg Osby, Kenny Wheeler, Louis Sclavis, John Betsch, Jane Ira Bloom, Connie and Hannes Bauer, Xu Fengxia, James Newton, Muhal Richard Abrams, John Lindberg, Michael Formaneck, Ernst Reijseger, Fred van Hove, Theo Jörgensmann, Phil Minton, Peter Brötzmann, Mark Dresser, Mark Feldman, Hamid Drake, Michiel Braam, Han Bennink, Zeena Parkins, Mal Waldron, Misha Mengelberg and Beat Furrer among others. His discography counts more than 30 CDs under his own name and many others as sideman.

Richard Scott in red (1)RICHARD SCOTT – modular synthesizer
Richard is a free improvising musician and electroacoustic composer working with electronics including modular synthesizers and controllers such as the Buchla Thunder and Lightning and his own self-designed WiGi infrared controller developed at STEIM. He has been composing and performing for over 25 years, recently working with Evan Parker, Jon Rose, Richard Barrett, Kazuhisa Uchihashi, Shelley Hirsch, Ute Wassermann, Michael Vorfeld, Frank Gratkowski and his own Lightning Ensemble. He studied free improvisation in the 1980s with John Stevens, saxophone with Elton Dean and Steve Lacy, and electroacoustic composition with David Berezan and Ricardo Climent. He has released many albums, for example with Grutronic and Evan Parker for PSI records, “The Magnificence of Stereo” (sruti BOX) and has a solo double modular synthesizer LP, “Several Circles”, and an album with Sidsel Endresen, “Debris in Lower Earth Orbit”, both due for release on CUSP Editions in 2015.

released March 14, 2016

Michael Vorfeld – percussion
Richard Scott – modular synthesizer
Frank Gratkowski – contrabass clarinet, Bb clarinet, alto saxophone

Recorded in Berlin 3rd/4th February 2015
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Richard Scott
Image by Philippa Jeffery
Design by Clarke Robinson
tags: experimental contemporary classical electroacoustic electronic music electronica improvisation Berlin

parakeets sleeve 0007009573_10

New Release: Parak.eets “Natura Venomous”

Ute Wassermann – voice, bird calls
Richard Scott – modular synthesizer
Emilio Gordoa – vibraphone, percussion

Formed in Berlin in 2014, Parak.eets is an unconventional experimental music ensemble comprising Ute Wassermann, Richard Scott and Emilio Gordoa – three highly singular voices from the thriving Berlin improvised music scene. The combination of analogue modular synthesizer, prepared vibraphone and extended vocal techniques makes the trio’s sound unique.

Like many birds, all three musicians are natural mimics: Scott’s analogue synthesizer often sounds like voice and percussion, Gordoa’s vibraphone treatments and other percussion call to mind both voices and electronics, while Wassermann’s hybrid instrument of voice with a variety of bird whistles blends so exactly with this sound world that it is sometimes a shock to remember that what we are hearing is a human voice. All three go beyond how their instruments normally sound into other worlds, populated by the multifarious sounds of other instruments, birds, mammals, insects and other organisms that are harder to identify.

One pleasure is that they often come together to form something like a composite sound environment; parallels with forest and jungles and other natural habitats seem inevitable and it is surprising when, out of this, highly virtuosic bursts of contemporary music announce themselves. The music morphs, forever changing its shapes and surfaces. It delights in the surprise of letting go of one moment in order to embrace the next. There is a sense of generosity in this music, an openness of all the musicians not only to each other but to the potential of sound in general. The trio is able to negotiate many twists and turns, continually open to new possibilities and combinations. If the overall sense is one of playful and joyful exploration, the listener is left in no doubt of the seriousness and musicality exerted in every moment.

Natura Venomous
Sound Anatomy SA008/Creative Sources 343
CD and download:

Recorded in Berlin, 12 and 13 January 2015
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Richard Scott
Image by Philippa Jeffery (digital)
Design by Clarke Robinson (digital)
Design by Carlos Santos (physical)

UW_CarolineForbesUte Wassermann
Ute Wassermann is known as a vocal soloist and composer/performer and for her extraordinary, many-voiced and extreme vocal sound-language, which she has brought into contemporary music in diverse ways. She defamiliarises the sound of her voice using bird call whistles, palate whistles, speaker objects or field recordings. A particular interest is the development of compositions for spaces with unusual acoustic qualities. She has performed as a vocal soloist in the area of contemporary and experimental music in festivals in Europe, Australia and Asia. She is an integral part of the Berlin and London experimental music scenes, performing regularly with ongoing collaborators like Speak Easy (with Phil Minton, Martin Blume and Thomas Lehn), John Russell, Alexander Kolkowski, Els Vandeweyer, Michael Vorfeld (percussion and lights), Birgit Ulher and others, and is a member of the Berlin-based composer/performer ensemble Les Femmes Savantes. She has given premieres of works composed specially for her voice, for example by Richard Barrett, Chaya Czernowin, Henning Christiansen, Hans-Joachim Hespos, Matthias Kaul, Michael Maierhof, Michael Finnissy, Cathy van Eck, Simon Steen-Andersen and Andrew Noble, as well as performances of works by Salvatore Sciarrino, John Cage and others.

Richard ScottRichard Scott in red (1)
Richard Scott is a composer and free improvising musician working with analogue modular synthesizers and alternative controllers such as his own self-designed WiGI infra-red controller developed at STEIM, the Buchla Thunder and Buchla Lightning. He has been composing and performing improvised music for over 25 years, producing, performing and recording with artists such as Evan Parker, Twinkle³, Edward Barton, Clive Bell, Olaf Rupp, Robin Hayward, Richard Barrett, Gustavo Aguilar, David Ross, BARK! and Grutronic. He studied improvisation with John Stevens, saxophone with Elton Dean and Steve Lacy, Action Theater improvisation with Sten Rudstrom and electroacoustic composition with David Berezan and Ricardo Climent. His work has been featured on BBC Radio 3 and Radio 4, and at the International Computer Music Conference, London Jazz Festival, BEAM, Bratislava NEXT Festival of Advanced Music, SARC Sonorities Belfast, Berlin Interaktion Improvised Music Festival and MANTIS Electroacoustic Music Festival in Manchester. He was a long term artistic resident at STEIM in Amsterdam, a lecturer in music at Lancaster University and co-curator of two underground experimental improvised and electronic concert series in Berlin: AUXXX Berlin and Basic Electricity.

Emilio Gordoaindex
Emilio Gordoa is a Mexican musician, composer and vibraphonist who lives and works in Berlin and Mexico City. He is involved in numerous projects, including many related to experimental music, noise, free jazz, improvisation and contemporary music. He is redefining the vibraphone as a sound source, treating it with preparations and extended techniques, and is a busy composer as well, writing scores for a variety of ensembles, theatre and documentary films. His recent projects include SOEL electro-acoustic quartet, Mano Morta, LEEM and MOvE (with Adam Pultz Melbye, Dag Magnus Narvesen, Achim Kaufmann and Harri Sjöström). Emilio has worked and recorded with artists such as John Russell, Tristan Honsinger, German Bringas, Misha Marks, Tobi Delius, Liz Allbee, Remi Alvarez, Chris Cogburn, Clayton Thomas, Klaus Kürvers, Tony Buck, Alexander Bruck, Juan García, Bonnie Jones, Harri Sjöström, Frank Paul Schubert and Daniel Ott. He has performed at venues and festivals around Europe, including the Copenhagen Jazz Festival, Klangkunstprojekte in Leipzig, Art Sound Festival Berlin, CSW (Contemporary Art Museum of Warsaw) and Mopomoso at the Vortex in London.

“Auslanders” Richard Scott’s Lighting Ensemble with Jon Rose

Richard Scott’s Lightning Ensemble with Jon Rose
Auslanders: live in berlin
Vernacular 001/Sound Anatomy SA006

Jon Rose – violin
Richard Scott – modular synthesizer
David Birchall – acoustic guitar
Phillip Marks – drums and percussion

Sound Anatomy and Vernacular Recordings are delighted to present our first co-production capturing the legendary Australian improvising and experimental violinist Jon Rose performing live in Berlin with Richard Scott’s Manchester-based Lightning Ensemble.
Richard Scott and Phillip Marks first played together in Manchester’s Bark! in the 1990s (alongside Rex Casswell and Robin Hayward). Out of this quite volatile collaboration they helped to develop a distinctive highly conversational, percussive and rhythmic “Manchester-style” of free improvisation, which is very much reflected in the contrapuntal textures and forms on this album, recorded live in concert at Ausland in Berlin in 2015.  This hyper-interactive style of improvising, with individual lines subservient to the collective shaping of energies, owes much to seminal UK groups such as Spontaneous Music Ensemble and Music Improvisation Company but with a restless edginess that perhaps reflects a different time and no doubt something of the sociable and sometimes abrasive character of the city of Manchester itself.
Jon Rose gamely agreed to meet us onstage for the first time for the Lightning Ensemble’s Berlin debut concert at Ausland and appeared unfazed by the experience. The summer fireworks that ensued that evening are herby etched here in binary form for all to hear.

sc000ad8bbAuslanders is co-released with Vernacular Recordings, as a digital download and as a limited edition run of 100 CDs in hand printed packaging.
recorded at Ausland, Berlin, 12 June 2015
mastered by Richard Scott
image by Philippa Jeffery (digital)
design by Clarke Robinson (digital)
image by David Birchall (physical)
design and print Nicholas Birchall (physical)


Jon RoseJon Rose
Violinist Jon Rose is the central figure in the development of Free Improvisation in Australia, performing in almost every Art Gallery, Jazz and Rock club in the country – either solo or with an international pool of improvising musicians called The Relative Band. In 1986, he moved to Berlin in order to more fully realise his on-going project of some 25 years: The Relative Violin. This is the development of a Total Art form based around the one instrument. Necessary to this concept has been innovation in the fields of new instrument design (over 20 deconstructed violin instruments including the legendary double piston triple neck wheeling violin, environmental performance (eg. playing fences in the Australian outback using the violin as a bow) and new instrumental techniques and contexts.
Jon Rose has appeared on over 100 records and CD’s; He has worked with many of the innovators and mavericks in contemporary music such as The Kronos String Quartet, John Zorn, Derek Bailey, Butch Morris, Barry Guy, Fred Frith, Joelle Leandre, Connie Bauer, Johannes Bauer, Chris Cutler, Otomo Yoshihide, KK Null, Alex Von Schlippenbach, Toshinori Kondo, Francis-Marie Uitti, Alvin Curran, Evan Parker, Paul Lovens, Phil Minton, Shelley Hirsh, Mark Dresser, Ben Patterson, Emmett Williams, John Cage, Joel Ryan, Peter Kowald, Borah Borgmann, Tristan Honsinger, Mari Kimura, The Soldier String Quartet, Borah Bergman, Sainko, Tristan Honsinger, Tony Oxley, Cor Fuhler, Steve Beresford, Eugene Chadbourne, Bob Ostertag, Malcolm Goldstein, Jim Denley, David Moss, Miya Masaoka, Barre Phillips, Roger Turner, George Lewis, Gunter Christmann, Davy Williams, Misha Mengelberg, Elliott Sharpe, Elena Kats Chernin, Lauren Newton, Uli Gumpert, Christian Marclay, Richard Barrett, Pierre Henry, etc.).

richardScottRichard Scott
Richard Scott is a electroacoustic composer and improvising musician specialising in modular synthesizers. He has been composing and performing for over 25 years, recently working with Jon Rose, Richard Barrett, Kazuhisa Uchihashi, Shelley Hirsch, Audrey Chen, Axel Doerner, Ute Wasserman, Michael Vorfeld, Frank Gratkowski and his own Lightning Ensemble. He studied free improvisation in the 1980s with John Stevens, saxophone with Elton Dean and Steve Lacy, and electroacoustic composition with David Berezan and Ricardo Climent. He has released many albums, for example with Grutronic and Evan Parker (PSI records), The Magnificence of Stereo (sruti BOX), Debris in Lower Earth Orbit with Sidsel Endreson and Twinkle3 (CUSP Editions) in 2015 and forthcoming solo double modular synthesizer LP, Several Circles (CUSP Editions). He helped initiate the Sines and Squares Festival of Analogue and Modular Synthesizers, he co-curates two long-running concert series in Berlin, Basic Electricity and AUXXX, and curates his own label and concert series Sound Anatomy.

DavidBirchall02David Birchall
David Birchall is a guitarist and sound explorer lives in Manchester and one of the key figures in the city’s currently very rich and active free improvisation and noise scenes. He is a highly original guitarist whose highly visceral approach to the instrument combines remarkable musical sensitivity and appalling physical violence. He performs regularly with many Manchester based improvisors  including Sam Andreae, Andrew Cheetham, Otto Willberg, Greta Buitkute, THF Drenching, London based Colin Webster and Amsterdam native Rogier Smal. One-offs and random stage/studio collaborations have also seen him working with such luminary figures as Marshall Allen, Rhys Chatham, Phil Minton and Mark Sanders.
He has performed in the UK, Europe, Russia and USA and has been commissioned to give workshops and projects for Madlab, Brighter Sounds, Bury and Manchester Libraries, Manchester NHS, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, the Tour de France and the National Media Museum.

phil-marksPhillip Marks
Phillip Marks has been an energetic and inspiring force in improvised music in Manchester for over two decades. As a drummer and percussionist, with his group BARK! he has developed a uniquely animated approach to the instrument and to collective group improvisation.  He performs with pianist Stephen Grew in  Grew Trio/Quartet, in a Quartet with Tony Bevan, Dominic Lash and Paul Obermayer (Recording “A Big Hand” released in 2010) and  in the Alan Tomlinson Trio.
Has also played with Derek Bailey, Evan Parker, John Butcher, Phil Wachsman, Marcio Mattos, Pat Thomas, John Edwards among many others as well as performing as a solo percussionist.

Hiss and Viscera

Audrey Chen & Richard Scott
Hiss and Viscera
Sound Anatomy SA004

RICHARD SCOTT – modular synthesizer

1. chimaera
2. hiss and viscera
3. tonguefish
4. cascade creatures
5. they’re always throwing in the air
6. anthozoa
7. my heidegger
8. barrel eye
9. that’s a moray

recorded in Berlin, 2 August 2015
recorded, mixed and mastered by Richard Scott
image by Philippa Jeffery
design by Clarke Robinson

Richard and Audrey“Hiss and Viscera” is Sound Anatomy’s fourth album release and presents a striking debut recording from two highly distinctive voices in the richly varied Berlin improvising scene. On the face of it the human voice and analogue synthesizer may appear to have little in common but Chen and Scott share an intuitive, corporeal and dynamic sound world out of which an intense and sustained musical conversation develops. Phrases and interjections bounce and ricochet between Chen’s vivid lexicon of glottal pops, rasps and expulsions and Scott’s exhaustive catalogue of electronic clangs, plosives and propulsions. The resultant musical conversation may not always seem entirely human in origin, conjuring sonic images of stories, languages and environments populated by many unearthly creatures, real or imagined.

Berlin Solos: Live at Basic Electricity

Lloyd Cole & Wolfgang Seidel
Berlin Solos: Live at Basic Electricity
Sound Anatomy SA003

LLOYD COLE – modular synthesizer
WOLGANG SEIDEL – Buchla Music Easel, tabletop guitar

1. Anthaler (Cole) 12:36
2. Berlin Solo (Seidel) 24:43

recorded live in concert at Basic Electricity @ Lichtblick Kino, Berlin, 11 September 2015
mastered by Richard Scott
image by Philippa Jeffery
design by Clarke Robinson
thanks to Navs and Basic Electricity

Sound Anatomy is delighted to present a historic release consisting of two modular synthesizer solos recorded live at one of Berlin’s oldest and wisest experimental electronic music concert series, Basic Electricity.

Both Lloyd Cole and Wolfgang Seidel are veteran performers each having long and eclectic musical careers behind them: Cole, a celebrated English dissident soulboy indie-rocker known for his sardonic wit and lyricism, and Seidel, a Krautrock legend who played drums with the likes of Conrad Schnitzler and Ton Steine Scherben back in the days when the Wall still divided the city. In recent years both musicians have become deeply absorbed by the charms of analogue modular synthesizers. Amazingly, neither of them had performed solo in such a context before this concert was recorded in September 2015. These recordings thus represent world premieres of both of them performing as modular synthesizer soloists.

LloydCole02With “Anhalter” Lloyd Cole has created a unique and original piece of ambient electronic music, curiously perched between tension and resolution, its rhythmic pulsing and stretched tonality suggesting directions which are perhaps all the more curious for being hinted at but not taken. Eerie and curious, it is an accomplished work and also a tantalising glimpse of possible future developments.

Wolfgang_seidel_2013“Berlin Solo” documents Wolfgang Seidel’s first public performance with his recently acquired Buchla Music Easel synthesizer, though there is no evidence of trepidation in the way he launches into this deeply sonorous exploration of tone, drone and texture. The synthesizer is interpolated with chords from a tabletop guitar (a reminder of the sound of early Kluster and Eruption) building, looping and hovering. Seidel spins a beguiling tale at once sensitive, dark and ominous.

Time Probe

Paul Obermayer and David Ross
Time Probe
Sound Anatomy SA002
Release date: Dec 1st 2015


Time Probe 1 2.05
Time Probe 2 6.43
Time Probe 3 2.07
Time Probe 4 5.12
Time Probe 5 7.31
Time Probe 6 2.49
Time Probe 7 2.05
Time Probe 8 3.10
Time Probe 9 2.15

Recorded in London, 5 April 2015

mastered by Richard Scott
image by Philippa Jeffery
design by Clarke Robinson

For our second release Sound Anatomy are delighted to present Time Probe, the debut recording from two of London’s most creative musicians. Paul Obermayer and David Ross have been persistently inventive forces in the city’s musical underground for the last two decades and more.

Time Probe is a nine-part suite of unedited excerpts from a single recording session using two self-designed instruments: Paul Obermayer’s POlymod, a Max MSP based polyphonic sample modulator, and David Ross’s Davestation, a hardware based control voltage time modulator. The title of the recording obliquely refers to news of NASA’s space probe arriving at Pluto that same week, and also to Sun Ra’s Space Probe (1974), especially the 18 minute Moog solo title track.

Ross and ObermayerThis is very “electronic” music made with bold and tactile gestures. Modulated textures of glistening purity are cut with moments of startling distortion and decay, and dissolve into voids of ambiguous darkness and silence. For all its physicality, a sense of otherworldliness seems to haunt these sounds, which avoid obvious reference points yet are unafraid to travel into spheres of abstract and galactic funkiness when the moment demands it. The listener senses there is nowhere to hide; nothing is looped or layered or consolidated into the lazy, the relaxing or the familiar. Cliché is eschewed in favour of a constant sense of questioning and mystery, making the clear shapes that emerge all the more astonishing.

Orbit, Dialogue and Trajectory: Live in Berlin

Thomas Lehn, Richard Scott, Axel Dörner
Orbit, Dialogue and Trajectory: Live in Berlin
Sound Anatomy SA001

Release date: 1 December 2015

THOMAS LEHN – analogue synthesizer
RICHARD SCOTT – modular synthesizer
AXEL DÖRNER – trumpet

1. Orbit (Lehn/Scott/Dörner) 12’32”
2. Dialogue (Lehn/Scott) 19’08”
3. Trajectory (Lehn/Scott/Dörner) 12’48”

recorded live in concert on the 21st August 2014, at AUXXX in the Lichtblick Kino cellar, Berlin.

recorded, mixed and mastered by Richard Scott
image by Philippa Jeffery
photo by Christian Zahn
design by Clarke Robinson

This album launches the Sound Anatomy imprint and captures a rare musical encounter between the remarkable trumpeter Axel Dörner in collaboration with two notable analogue synthesizer players: Thomas Lehn, who has carried the torch for the EMS Synthi analogue synth as a tool for free improvised experimentation for some 30 years, and Richard Scott, a very active presence on the Berlin modular synthesizer, electroacoustic and improvised music scenes. The combination is a natural one in which the musical division of labour is negotiated and renegotiated throughout. Lehn and Scott take a visceral and almost “acoustic” approach to their dials, wires and circuitry, while the influence of electronic music on Dörner’s own oeuvre is striking: the trumpet’s envelope shapes, low frequency oscillations and sustained, noise-laden textures seem inspired as much by musique concrete and tape music as they are by extended brass techniques.

Richard, Axel, ThomasWith no little humour, the original flier for the concert (part of the long-running AUXXX series) reads: “Two men with sinister-looking suitcases full of mysterious knobs and dials meet the tweed suited man-with-the-golden-horn one Thursday night in a cellar of a tiny East Berlin cinema… What could possibly happen next??? You will have to come to find out…” And indeed we may perceive something both cinematic and subterranean in this intense, atmospheric musical underworld. Sometimes we hear the surprising emergence of groove-like rhythmic patterns and harmonic incidents which do not entirely forget melody, though these are not elements the trio choose to hang onto for long, giving a sense of continuous unfolding and making us most curious about where this collaboration will lead in the future.