AGUSTÍ FERNÁNDEZ / INGAR ZACH / "GERMINAL"
Germinal is the result of the first musical meeting between the spanish pianist, Agustí Fernández, and Norwegian percussionist, Ingar Zach. The release is also the first time the label Plastic Strip moves into contemprorary improvisation music, but when it first got these subliminal recordings in hands, genre or style didn’t matter.
Fernández and Zach had been talking for a long time to initiate a collaberation, and finally the occasion was there during Ingar's visit in Barcelona in March 2006. Agustí and Ingar recorded for about four hours, and the music they recorded is absolutely "Germinal" (see Agusti`s breaking down of the term under). The release has a genuine, personal character, and the total spectrum of sounds that are being presented, melts together like one instrument. The musicians focus, makes you think that the two are in possession of a common, unique approach to listening. The music flows in many directions, free of boundaries and genres. The release comes in a 4- page digipack with pictures by the Norwegian contemprorary artist Magnus Bjerk, pressed in a limited number of 500 copies only.
Reasons for a title by Agustí Fernández.
1. Firstly, Germinal (from the Latin germen, seed) refers to a seed that germinates, is transformed, and the ability that things have to develop. There are also cells known as germline cells which contain the genetic material that is transmitted to the next generation. And I see our music as being highly germinal, in the sense that it is organic, evolving unstoppably from the tiny initial seed and developing in a completely natural way.
2. Germinal is also a man's name in Spain. It was popular in the early-20th century, when Spanish anarchists formed the world's social vanguard. For them, Germinal was a symbol of freedom, of faith in people, of hope for a future when people would be free of the bonds ofpower. Then came the Civil War, Franco and the rest. But those ideas remained in people's hearts. I myself have met several men named Germinal, descendants of those early anarchists.
3. Germinal is also the title of Émile Zola's famous novel, a passionate, powerful denouncement of exploitation and oppression that no doubt helped to inspire many Spanish anarchists.
4. Long ago, moreover, Germinal was the name given in France to the month from mid-March to mid-April as part of the French Revolution's attempt to rename the months of the year and establish a new republican calendar.?5. As the title of the first recording by a new group, I think that Germinal bodes well.?6. Finally, I also think the name Germinal suits the dog on the cover very well.
AGUSTÍ FERNÁNDEZ piano
One of the most important explorers of creative music in Spain. Agustí combines wide-ranging knowledge of classical twentieth-century piano with jazz improvisation, in a unique and powerful style. (The Village Voice, New York, USA) Agustí Fernández was born in Palma de Mallorca, where he studied piano. Later, he continued his studies in Barcelona, France, and Germany. He became a professional musician at age 13. His musical life changed when he discovered the music of Cecil Taylor and Iannis Xenakis, with whom he studied in 1978. Fernández’s career as a soloist emerged in the II Biennial of Young Creative Artists (Thessalonika, Greece) in 1987. Since that time, he has performed in the most important Spanish and European festivals. He has also composed music for dance, theater, cinema, and television.
Fernández’s other work includes that of director and co-founder of the Orquestra del Caos and of the Big Ensemble del Taller de Músics. He has been a founder member of the IBA Collective (Improvisers of Barcelona), and he was director of IBA from 1998 tol 2001.
In 1998, Fernández began a close artistic relationship with the choreographer and dancer Andrés Corchero, with whom he has created various pieces. The year 1998 also marked his creation, jointly with Joan Saura and Liba Villavecchia, of the Trío Local.
In 2003 Fernández became the first Spanish musician to record for the prestigious German record label ECM, with his participation on the CD "Memory/Vision" by the Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble, of which he remained a member from 2002. Also since that year, he has been a member of the Barry Guy New Orchestra.
In 2005 he began the trio Fernández/Guy/López, which premiered at the Festival Grec of Barcelona That year was particularly prolific in recording terms, with the issue of 6 CDs.
Fernández is professor of improvisation at the Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (ESMUC: Higher School of Music of Catalonia) since 2001.
Fernández has more than 30 recordings with artists as Derek Bailey, Peter Kowald, Evan Parker, Mats Gustafsson, Marilyn Crispell, William Parker, Susie Ibarra, John Butcher, Ramon López... And has played with many others, including Axel Dörner, Mat Maneri, Lê Quan Ninh, Joel Ryan, Andrea Neumann, Sainkho Namtchaylak...
More info: www.agustifernandez.com
INGAR ZACH percussion
Norwegian improviser, percussionist, Ingar Zach (b. June 29th 1971 in Oslo, Norway) starts playing percussion at age 7.From 1993-94 he studies Musicology at the University in Oslo, Norway, and then moves to Trondheim in 1994 to start a three year study in jazz and composition at the Music Conservatory. Early 1997 he participates in an exchange program at the Royal Music Academy in Stockholm, Sweden. In 1998 he meets the guitar player; Ivar Grydeland with whom he develops a close musical relationship. In 2000 he co-founds the record label; SOFA together with Grydeland, releasing improvised music, exclusively (producing 16 productions by the end of 2004). In 2003 he obtaines the degree Cand. Musicae, for recieving the master in Chamber Music together with fellow student; Ivar Grydeland at the Music Academy in Oslo, Norway. This is the first master ever given in Norway with only improvised music on the repertoire.
Ingar Zach is known for the wide range of sounds in his instrument. He plays his percussion in a very dynamic, but still energetic way. He uses homemade percussion, gongs and devises like; propellers, bows, sruti-box and tabla machine as parts of his extended drumkit. He is dedicated to improvised/contemporary music and is regularly touring and recording as a soloist or with his fixed ensembles (Huntsville, Looper, MUTA, Flore De Cataclysmo, Laboratory Field and Magnetic North Orchestra), but also in different ad-hoc projects in Europe, Canada and USA.
During his career as a performer he is recording and participating on more than 40 recordings, including his two solo discs; Percussion Music (SOFA 516) and IN (Kningdisk).