Rede / Speech
Some of Blixa Bargeld’s most significant artistic moves during the 1990s and 2000s happened live, on stage, in improvisatory contexts. Rede/Speech was one such series of performances, which Bargeld called ‘pseudo-scientific entertainment’, involving reflections (in German) on various scientific phenomenon, which Bargeld had researched intensively for this purpose. Bargeld fed his voice and microphone through a series of MIDI devices and looping machines, though, building great edifices of chant, murmur, melody and scream through these systems; it’s a salutary, wild experience, Bargeld slyly mumbling at one point, singing out beautifully the next, chatting away, inviting the audience to get involved, becoming a human beatbox, and sometimes unleashing his trademark, unworldly scream (at these points, he’s like a dapper version of Japanese noise maestro Masonna). There are a number of Rede/Speech performances floating around online, in audio and AV, and a great DVD – well worth checking them all out, to get a sense of the universe Bargeld smelts out of this material.
– Jon Dale