a.P.A.t.T, Craig Sinclair, Shane McKenna: FACT, Liverpool

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Continuing their musical settings project, a.P.A.t.T. are joined by Lovecraft’s Craig Sinclair and a host of others in FACT. Getintothis’ David Yates has his mind pulled apart.


FACT, the Liverpool-based cinema and art gallery, was the latest space to be utilised for a.P.A.t.T‘s series of Musical Settings.
The latest a.P.A.t.T instalment inside FACT, which features the orchestral wing of the band, followed on from making headline news in Sefton Park‘s bandstand, visit the museum to worship false idols and reach for the stars before retreating underground to the Metropolitan Cathedrals’ crypt.
First up was a performance by Irish artist Shane McKenna, who has devised a new way to notate music, rather than giving the traditional scores directing a precise way for the musicians to play he’s created computer animations suggesting to the orchestra how to play it.
He illustrated his technique by depicting a man with a hammer doing a heavy stroke followed by a gentle tap which was recreated by the orchestra, to play a loud sustained note, followed by a brief one.
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There was then a period of audience participation, each row was given a sound to make and alongside animation. It worked well and served as a good introduction to the further pieces performed by the orchestra.
Next up was a short silent animated film by local musician/performance artist Craig Sinclair – one of the funniest artists in the city and musician in chief in Lovecraft.
His silent film Blunderbuss, scored live by the orchestra shared a dystopian world in which the lead character is given a weapon (the Blunderbuss of the title) to eliminate all that’s intolerable.
The short piece was fun, witty and an indication that silent films clearly are the future.
Lastly, was the tricky part of the evening; a recorded playback of Stockhausen‘s Gesang Der Junglinge, rendered even more difficult by a introduction by Matthew Fairclough from the University of Liverpool which threw the audience into the deep-end of the technicalities of mid-20th Century composition.
To Getintothis’ untutored mind, we simply felt drowned in information; the brain forced into the off position – a sentiment echoed by a couple of other lads, who walked out part way through.
Still, miss-steps aside, Musical Settings has so far been a trip, hopefully April’s voyage to the remains of the Titanic at the Maritime Museum will continue in the same unpredictable way.
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Getintothis captures a.P.A.t.T. at the World Museum with Ex-Easter Island Head.
a.P.A.t.T.
Pictures by Graeme Lamb.

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