4 Jan 2008
The Element of Danger 
The Bays and The Heritage Orchestra with composers John Metcalfe and Simon Hale will tonight play a unique improvised gig reports Pascal Wyse in The Guardian.

The improvised music played by The Bays will be fed into a computer and analysed by a program called Sibelius. Metcalfe and Hale will then write orchestral parts as the piece progresses. John Metcalfe says "There's an element of danger, that's for sure. It's scary, but I'm looking forward to it. I think what we do will affect how the Bays play - they will have to make fewer changes, and perhaps evolve the music more gradually; otherwise we might get left behind. One composer will do woodwind and brass, the other strings. Halfway through, we'll swap."

Bays drummer Andy Gangadeen (who also plays in Metcalfe's live band) says "It's a bit like the TV show Curb Your Enthusiasm. There is a huge amount of improvisation in there, but I didn't realise it at first. After knowing that, somehow it makes it more special."

It all sounds pretty good. Pret-ty pret-ty pret-ty good.

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Biting Tongues

In the grey days of late 1970s post-punk Manchester, youth culture was a serious affair: every musical performance was measured mostly by the conviction of its delivery. The term 'New Wave' opened up free vistas where acquired skills could once again be exercised after punk's monochrome blur. It could be applied to anything from a James 'Blood' Ulmer record to the latest Throbbing Gristle release, Magazine to Swell Maps. Move outside that terrain into Sun Ra, Parliament, Frank Sinatra and Martin Denny, and your options were suddenly without limit...

Then came Tony Wilson's Factory Club (at the Russell Club in Hulme) offering an open invitation to experiment that was taken up when Ken Hollings, Howard Walmsley, Eddie Sherwood and a few others decided to make some noise to accompany their 16mm silent epic Biting Tongues. A further performance followed a few weeks later, when Colin Seddon and Graham Massey disbanded their Post Natals project and joined up. The film itself, a flashing series of negative images, became a memory; the name remained.

- extract from the LTM Biting Tongues biography

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