The New York-based Australian JG Thirlwell has regularly released exciting records between postpunk, experimental rock and noise since the early 1980s, for example with his one-man project Foetus and with Wiseblood. He has also made a name for himself as a classical composer (e.g. for the Kronos Quartet) and as a remixer (e.g. for Faith No More and Nine Inch Nails). His current album "Oscillospira", which he recorded with the Swedish multi-instrumentalist Simon Steensland, is now possibly his most impressive and fuses avant-garde prog with modern chamber music
Thirlwell, who learned to play the cello as a child, discovered the desire to orchestrate 35 years ago: "It started in 1985, when I had access to a Fairlight synthesizer. The Foetus-Off-The-Wheel album 'Nail' already featured orchestral instruments, and a more symphonic feeling crept in on later albums He has now taken this development to the extreme - moreover, "Oscillospira" is more avant-garde and progressive than anything he has released before. "I like the term 'progressive' when you understand it in its original sense," explains the 60-year-old. "In other words, when you move forward and unleash a rigid form."
In addition, "Oscillospira" is also characterised by his "serious" compositions, which are not available on record or on the internet - and of course by Simon Steensland, whom he met in Stockholm in 2017: "I had a composition commission for the Great Learning Orchestra at the time. It is based on the Scratch Orchestra by Cornelius Cardew [British composer, 1936-1981; note] and consists of musicians who can read music well, less well or not at all. So I used a score with conventional and graphic notation and also used guided improvisation When he saw Steensland's name on the list of participants, he immediately felt a certain anticipation: "I had listened to his music for years before; he embodies for me a world of sound that interests me very much: the rock-in-opposition movement and the Zeuhl family with bands like Magma, Present and Univers Zero"