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A sonic force of Swiss beats collides with South African ears this week, in the form of the electronic ensemble, Hadron.
In the music business for 15 years, bassist Marino Pliakas and drummer Michael Wertmueller – both successful artists in their own right – have joined forces to form Hadron.
The duo boasts a special blend of contemporary music – avant-rock and complex electronic textures – to create a unique sound.
It was Pliakas’ last visit to SA, in 2006, with the trio Steamboat Switzerland playing at the Grahamstown Indaba New Music Festival, that has seen him keep a firm connection with SA musicians.
The duo will perform at the Mahogany Room in Cape Town this evening as well as the international Unyazi Electronic Music Festival in Durban tomorrow.
Pliakas and Wertmeuller’s craft has seen them play with various bands, from Sludge to Full Blast. Their musical influences stem from Pliakas’ roots in classical guitar and Wertmeuller’s jazz drumming.
However, it is Wertmeuller’s work as drummer for the hardcore rock band Alboth! in the late 1990s that saw him add to the avant-rock feel of Hadron.
The pair mesh their sound with Wertmeuller’s compositional skills to create complex scores.
He has composed for Steamboat Switzerland, among other ensembles, and worked with the likes of William Parker, Bill Laswell, Toshinori Kondo, Mark Trayle and Olaf Rupp.
Comparing Hadron to the Hadron Collider, Pliakas said: “It’s a metaphor for a musical parameter, crashing together, creating something unexpected. In this basic physics world, very weird things are happening.”
SA audiences can expect a showcase drawing from previous work with their other bands to strictly Hadron compositions.
“It’s rocky and it’s going to be loud and intense. It’s a rock rhythm section and very polyrhythmic. There’s no typical melody on top of the beats. The concentration is purely on the rhythm and sound.”
• Hadron performs in Cape Town tonight at the Mahogany Room. Concert starts at 8pm. Tickets available at 076 679 2697. Full price: R60, students: R40. Booking is essential.