February 2013


So this year is already developing into a very adventurous one with plans in motion for all manner of surprises and challenges.

Fireflies and falling snow

I began the year wondering if I might just simply become an Apple engineer with the volume of hours I laboured over my new Mac computers. With a supermodel skinny iMac and lightweight Retina laptop introduced to the studio and office, each needed such loving attention, filling them with software, updating applications, introducing them to passwords and so, but thankfully now they are almost house-trained.

Elemental Force kicks off on 8th February at Nottingham Castle, although all the advance tickets have now sold out completely.  Elemental Force is a series of free spectacular large-scale outdoor shows which put historic buildings centre stage and use light, sound and film to celebrate the rich heritage of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.

Audiences will find themselves in a fire garden surrounded by flickering trails and fire-based installations and will have the chance to explore their surroundings in anticipation of the main event. On each landmark building a huge projection will appear as the story unfolds through film, music, fireworks and aerial dancers suspended high in the evening sky.

A short documentary introducing the project can be viewed online, as well as an excerpt from the original score. Next shows are at Derby Silk Mill on 7th March, Newark Castle on 16th March and the grand finale at Chatsworth House on 23th March 2013, so check in with the website frequently if you intend to come along.


I’ve been very occupied working towards my forthcoming solo gallery show in Amsterdam, which opens on 2 March and runs for two months until the end of April. It will take place at the Mediaroom in Melkweg, a popular music venue and culture centre in Amsterdam. Entitled Scanner: A Month in the Life of an Artist, the show documents and explores one month in my creative life. I chose October 2012 as the focus point and will be presenting films, music, photographs, as well as stories written especially for the occasion. I hope that some of you can make it along to enjoy the show and you are welcome to the opening on 2 March at 17.00.

Over the last 18 months I’ve been an Associate Artist for Spitalfields Music Festival , developing a programme in London, which has now been announced. John Dowland’s Lachrimae is the inspiration for new works in this playful collection of sound installations and performances

To open the series, I’ll be joined by Bobby Krlic, the multi-instrumentalist behind The Haxan Cloak, presenting a new work for cello, guitar and treated percussion alongside original compositions and visuals. This unpredictable evening will also features my own cinematic interpretation of Lachrimae and a truly unique audiovisual computer junk orchestra installation by The Computer Junk Orchestra who made this extraordinary work

Then discover secret Spitalfields in a collection of venue-specific installations and performances that closes the programme with Elizabeth Walling of Gazelle Twin, who has curated a unique series of works exploring John Dowland’s Flow My Tears – from the notion of ‘flow’ within a melodic line, to the history of flow beneath Spitalfields itself. Very limited availability for these intimate and moving works.

Whilst speaking of Gazelle Twin, Elizabeth and I joined in a filmed conversation with legendary electronic artist John Foxx and Benge for The Quietus, around the themes of music and identity which you can tune into here.

John Foxx & Friends Discuss Identity Amidst The Machines from theQuietus on Vimeo.

In the spirit of giving and sharing it’s been a generous month too. An entire week evaporated working through my extensive archive of recordings towards this mammoth radio retrospective in February on free103point9. From 3-9 February, each night from midnight to 06.00 a.m., listeners can tune into a series of theme based broadcasts, focusing on live performance, sound installation, dance scores, film scores, composition, and radio works. Much of this work has not been heard in years or only to very limited audiences so I’m delighted to be sharing this with the greater world. I’m certain it will be re-broadcast at a later date too. Visit the links to check how and where to listen.

Disturbances at the edge of the retina

Whilst digging through the archives I discovered a host of works never heard before, such as this remix for Meat Beat Manifesto for their Storm The Studio R.M.X.S. release. A very different version was heard on the official release so feel free to download and share this rare gem. It’s a biting, rhythmic mindfield of voices and pulses.

Following that is an unreleased mix for Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth for the ROOT Box set release on Lo Recordings in 1998. No computers were used in the composition and you can hear me playing live guitar over loops of Thurston’s guitar. The end features a bootleg recording I made of a Sonic Youth back in the 1980s.


To close this bumper give-away package, here’s a full album of works composed as a homage to Italia composer Giacinto Scelsi, who was best known for writing music based around only one pitch. Originally released in 2009 on CD it features exclusive works by a host of artists including David Toop, Alvin Curran, KK Null, Sebastien Roux, Skoltz/Kolgen, Prevost/Butcher and a new work by myself.

Until next month.

Robin van Rimbaud
Professor Scanner

::: listen :::
Nosaj Thing: Home (Innovative Leisure)
Kevin Drumm: Tannenbaum (Hospital)
The Sonic Catering Band: A Gourmet’s Slumber (SCP)
Robert Hampson: Signaux (Editions Mego)

::: read :::
David Markson, Wittgenstein’s Mistress (Dalkey Archive)
Basualdo & Battle: Dancing Around the Bride (Yale)
Kyle Gann: Robert Ashley (Illinois)
Ismini Samanidou: Topography (Crafts Study Centre)

::: film:::
The Impossible, Juan Antonio Bayona, Spain
Gangster Squad, Ruben Fleischer, USA
Zero Dark Thirty,  Kathryn Bigelow, USA
Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino, USA


Scanner: A Month in the Life of an Artist
Solo exhibition
Melkweg Media Room
Amsterdam NL

02 March – 28 April 2013

An exhibition documenting one month in the life of a creative artist, featuring photographs, video, music, documentation, all created in the month of October 2012, capturing a portrait of each day from the mundane to the most exploratory and creative.


Night Haunts
By Sukhdev Sandhu
Design Mind Unit
Sound Design Scanner

Artangel Interaction invited writer and historian Sukhdev Sandhu to write a nocturnal journal unfolding over the course of 2006. His postings will appear sequentially at this microsite specially designed by Mind Unit. Sandhu’s forays see him prospecting in the London night with the people who drive its pulse, from the avian police to security guards, zookeepers and exorcists. Acclaimed artist and musician Scanner has collaborated with Sukhdev and Ian Budden of Mind Unit to compose the sound for the site. If you would like to be kept informed as each episode is posted, join artangel’s mailing list by clicking here .


Bittersweet Songs for the Sleepless City
Artangel Interaction

NightJam is the latest project in Artangel Interaction’s Nights of London series of artist-led collaborations with people who have a special view on a hidden side of the nocturnal city. Scanner invited young people at New Horizon Youth Centre in King’s Cross to collaborate on a creative project that expresses how the city at night looks and sounds to their ears and eyes. Through music and voice workshops they explored the sense of freedom and fear, celebration and solitude of the concealing darkness. Meanwhile, they captured their nights on disposable cameras, taking images that are at times eerie, startling, contemplative and funny. NightJam presents two elusive visual and musical journeys through the city’s ‘quiet’ hours.

NightJam presents two music tracks, a film, photographs, that can be experienced and freely downloaded. Additionally it features remixes of NightJam by Stephen Vitiello, Hakan Lidbo, Troy Banarzi, Si-cut.db and Pete Lockett.