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Fashionista's (2019)

Written for Platform 2019, in collaboration with Zwerm and The New What Now.

Guitarist plucking woolen string

for prepared electrical guitar quartet - 8 minutes

Guitarist "tickling" woolen strings

In Fashionista's I explore the possibility of moulding the art of knitting into a contemporary music piece. The players are asked to prepare their instruments with craft materials, to hit their guitars with needles, and to sonically embody the evolution of clothes-making from traditional handwork to industrial production. I carefully picked the objects that are used for the preparation. All of them are in some way related to needlework. The range varies from using strings of wool and security pins to more specific materials such as needle point protectors and stitch holders.

​The performance starts with a guitar-esque tea party where all players are working on their own "projects". All rhythms are based on existing knitting patterns, creating polyrhythmic structures of sound blocks that tune in and out of one another. This also happens quite literally: although the guitars are partly detuned due to the preparations, there is an underlying chord structure that sometimes comes forward and at other times is completely undistinguishable.

Zwerm playing "II. Handarbeid"

As the piece continues, the crafty sound world evolves and becomes more and more industrial. The tea party is dissolved and replaced by a spacey section with alienating sound effects and alternative tunings. Later, the players get up, put their guitars on a table, and start drumming on them with knitting needles. The polyrhythmic structures return and become more and more unified until the four players perform en bloc. Empowered by each other’s drive, the craftsmen work harder and harder—but at what speed lies the breaking point?

Interested? Contact me for a recording and the score of this composition!

Zwerm playing "I. Handwerk"
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