The Deichmans library in Grunnerløkka is a stoic building. The impressive façade looks out across an empty park, welcoming the latent reader to world of books encased behind warm wooden walls. If there was ever an occasion for reading, the Grunnerløkka library in Oslo is the venue that accommodates it, spare for a few evenings in January when the lights go out, and the books are safely returned to their shelves. On such occasions a low lying burr duly resonates through the layered pages, withholding the upper frequencies of an alien noise descending from above. Inspecting the origins of the source of the noise takes you to a room upstairs, where books are notably absent and a set of speakers dominate a small performance space. We are now at MultiNo!!, the second festival celebrating noise and experimental music from Norway and abroad. The collaboration between Nonfigurativ Musikk, Edge of Wrong, Multiversal and RPT (Reaktion Power Trio) occupies the Library’s performance space for the second time ever and between the books and the wooden walls the sound swells to immense proportions for one week in January 2016. A documentation in multimedia follows.
Noise is Void of Sound and bounding with personality. The personality of the artist expressed through controlled improvisation and executed in the moment, feeding off the energy of an audience. Slow bowed movements multiply in counterpoint with thick delays and reverbs swelling with every new addition before erupting in sweet harmonic bliss. Void of Sound brims with feeling and transports the listener to an ocean of sound ebbing and flowing on a sonic plain manipulated by a visceral being.
Elements of visual arts and dance weave their way between the music to create rounded artistic experiences. From Machinenfestung’s video shroud to the dance company that interpreted the music in movement at times, visual elements form a semiotic relationship with the music drawing your attention to the moment in which everything happens.
The live experience is tantamount to the experience of MultiNo!! and the audience member is transported back to a time as a youth finding your new favourite band perform at a small venue. Machinenfestung is your new favourite band, performing incredibly well-executed compositions, where improvisation and Jazz meet noise and rock, in a mechanical hybrid of music and visuals from an arctic north. You experience James Welburn’s Hold in the live context for the first time and what was an enticing record is an remarkable live experience, that you will not forget for some time to come.
For now the library has been returned to its readers and its books. A wave of silence has returned to its impressive yet humble rooms for the moment, while MultiNo!! set up for the next wave of events. The Formant’s documentation of the event ends here, but the story of the event is far from over,
MultiNo!! runs till the 14th of January and you can read more about it here.