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Jason Kahn developed these graphic scores, commissioned by the 2012 now NOW Festival in Australia, to push these specific players into situations outside of their comfort zone, as heard in this double LP which includes copies of the score plus notes and interviews.

Kahn, Jason
Open Space [VINYL 2 LPs]

Kahn, Jason: Open Space [VINYL 2 LPs] (Editions)
Label: Editions    
Released in: Switzerland    

"I've been composing graphical scores since 2004. Each score has been done for a particular group, and not just for a certain set of instruments but also for specific persons, each with their own personal sound and their own distinct approach to improvisation. The scores hover in the gray region between composition and improvisation. They create a situation where the players are free up to a point to improvise but in which they could also find themselves in juxtapositions with other players which they might not have personally chosen, thus throwing a metaphoric wrench in the proceedings.

The question has been posed several times, "But why do this? Why not just let the group improvise freely?" I'm interested in when a playing situation becomes unstable, when the players find themselves in situations which test the comfort zone of how and with whom they want to play with. The scores serve as a conduit for this process. But they are also more: they allow me to shape a playing environment, taking into account the different players, their instruments, even the notion of the playing space itself as one of the more decisive factors in the outcome of a piece. Beyond all this, as a visual artist I'm fascinated with the process of the graphical representation of sound: how we can depict a certain sound or way of playing graphically and how others can interpret a graphical form as a sound.

Two parameters govern the scores: the vertical axis indicates the general dynamics of the playing, the horizontal axis is a time line. I draw graphical forms for the musicians to interpret as they wish. I only ask that all dynamic and timing indications be adhered to as closely as possible. I give no information on how the graphical forms should be reacted to.

"Open Space" was commissioned by the 2012 now NOW Festival in Sydney, Australia. I chose some of the players myself, and some were suggested to me by the group's trombonist Rishin Singh (who also wrote the liner note to the LP). For the people suggested to me, and for whose work I was not familiar with, recordings were sent to me of them playing. On the basis of these recordings and my own personal knowledge of the other players, I was able to construct the score. I also knew that I wanted to work with a large group because the space we would be performing in would be a large one (which I'd already played in at the 2011 now NOW Festival).

The title "Open Space" refers both to the idea of working in an open space: the physical space of a room as well as the spaces of player interaction within the group and in reaction to the performance space itself; and to the notion of opening that space between improvisation and composition, delving into the friction and conduction which lie between these two approaches and opening this space up to discover the possibilities which lie therein."-Jason Kahn

" is a musician, artist and writer. He was born 1960 in New York and grew up in Los Angeles. He re-located to Europe in 1990 and is currently based in Zürich.

As an electronic musician, vocalist and drummer Kahn collaborates regularly with many musicians, both in improvised settings and in the context of graphical scores which he composes for specific groups.

Kahn has exhibited his installations in museums, galleries, art spaces and public sites internationally. These works focus on the idea of space: the conceptual and physical juncture points, its production and dissolution, and our relation to it as a political, social and environmental medium.

Kahn's other activities include sound pieces for radio, film, dance and theater. He has also designed numerous CD, LP and cassette covers. As a writer, his work has appeared in books, magazines and as liner notes to many audio publications.

Performing regularly around the world, Kahn has given concerts throughout Europe, North and South America, Australia, China, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Korea, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, Turkey and South Africa.

In 2011 Kahn started the Editions imprint to publish his own recordings and writings."

-Jason Kahn Website (

Edition of 250. Heavy weight 180 gram vinyl. Hand-painted covers on thick gray cardboard.

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Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings
Improvised Music
Electro-Acoustic Improv
Compositional Forms
Electroacoustic Composition

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Price: $24.00
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Shipping Weight: 27.00 units

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Product Information:

Edition of 250. Heavy weight 180 gram vinyl. Hand-painted covers on thick gray cardboard.

Label: Editions
Catalog ID: Editions 002
Squidco Product Code: 17581

Format: 2 LPs
Condition: New
Released: 2013
Country: Switzerland
Packaging: 2 LPs in a Carstock Foldover
Recorded January 19, 2012 atthe now NOW festival in Sydney,Australia by Jonathon Watts


Jason Kahn-composition, electronics

Chris Abrahams-piano

Laura Altman-clarinet

Monika Brooks-accordion

Matt Earle-electronics

Rishin Singh-trombone

Adam Sussmann-electronics

Aemon Webb-guitar

John Wilton-percussion

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Track Listing:

Side A: 15:00

Side B: 19:00

Side C: 19:00

Side D: 17:00

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