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William Basinski


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William Basinski (Houston, 1958), a New York-based classically-trained clarinetist and saxophonist, specializes in compositions for loops and drones. He began experimenting with compositions for piano and tape that created a melancholy ambience via looped and overdubbed melodies with Variations - A Movement in Chrome Primitive (1980), released on Variations - A Movement in Chrome Primitive (Durtro, 2002 - Die Stadt, 2004), and A Red Score in Tile (1979), released on A Red Score in Tile (3 Poplars, 2003).

Shortwave Music (1982), some of which appear on Shortwave Music (Noton, 1998), processed and assembled snippets of radio broadcasts to produce atmospheres at the border between musique concrete and ambient music. The River (1983), collected on the double-disc The River (Noton, december 2002), was the most mature expression of “shortwave music”.

Melancholia (Durtro, 2003 - 2062, 2005) collects more loop-based vignettes from the 1980s, closer in feeling and scope to Erik Satie and Brian Eno.

During the 1980s, Basinski often played saxophone during multimedia performances, and was a member of the Gretchen Langheld Ensemble, which later evolved into House Afire. In 1989 he opened his own loft for the creative arts, nicknamed “Arcadia”. Throughout the 1990s he refined his song-cycle Hymns of Oblivion. In 1997, Basinski launched his performance-art act Beautifying America. He also formed the electronic ensemble Life On Mars. Basinski has also created videos and films, notably the “ambient film” Fountain (2000).


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  • deadairspace

    «Cascade» is amazing

    Yesterday 10:07pm Reply
  • shorty427

    Vivian & Ondine was the last really amazing piece he did. I enjoyed nocturnes but it definitely doesn't get as much play time as his other works. Cascade will hopefully grow on me, but it's definitely not my favorite right now

    27 Mar 8:50pm Reply
  • p_o_l_i_s_w_a_g

    at least this new one is far more palatable than the mediocrity of 'Nocturnes,' but bill still isn't breaking any new ground here. can't tell if i've outgrown basinski or if he's just not growing as an artist. I haven't really liked anything he did since 2009 :/

    27 Mar 3:58pm Reply
  • Jonas_Migas

    His Disintegration Loops series are so powerfull. It instantly soothes me as soon as I start to play one of his loops.

    15 Mar 7:54pm Reply
  • PP667


    10 Mar 5:50pm Reply
  • impronen

    Sound is music when it is contextualised as such. Found sounds are music like found items are art, when put on display. There can be different opinions on they're artistic value but art is purely mechanically descriptive term, not one that gives value. Art can be total waste of time or it very well may not be.

    19 Feb 4:55pm Reply
  • AsepticVoid

    Aseptic Void upcoming digi-CD Carnal is now almost ready to be manufactured at our pressing plant. Totally remastered, Carnal offers to the listeners a cinematic experience into Silent Hill-esque's ambiences. For fans of dark ambient in its purest and strongest from. Limited to 450 copies. Pre-order your copy→ NAKED LUNCH RECORDS : ‪#‎darkambient‬ ‪#‎asepticvoid‬ ‪#‎CD

    5 Feb 1:06am Reply
  • Knifymoloko

    @mamafanfan You just blew my mind right there.

    29 Dec 2014 Reply
  • FeatgaryTD

    William Basinski performs an excerpt from his forthcoming release, "Cascade".

    18 Dec 2014 Reply
  • mamafanfan

    @TylerSymes there is sound but no music.

    15 Dec 2014 Reply
  • TylerSymes

    I'm not sure if his music is art or a waste of time.

    28 Nov 2014 Reply
  • Orbonen


    11 Nov 2014 Reply
  • Knifymoloko

    Loop Master. I bet his favorite cereal is Fruit Loops.

    6 Nov 2014 Reply
  • AlienDisco

    I'm calling my next band Magnifyingglassinsky

    6 Nov 2014 Reply
  • Blaine_The_Mono

    Basinski is a Polish surname (more precisely "Basiński", in case of Willie we've got English palatalization). Lupa ("u" is being pronounced in Polish in the same way as "oo") is magnifying glass. Loopiński would stand for Magnifyingglassinsky.

    27 Sep 2014 Reply
  • artofmyrder

    Loopiam Desintegrinski

    26 Sep 2014 Reply
  • Ponciac

    I've never bought a copy of 'The Wire' that didn't have a prominent ad for The Disintegration Loops in it.

    18 Sep 2014 Reply
  • andeemay

    William "Loopinski" bahaha that's the best thing I've seen all day

    29 Aug 2014 Reply
  • FeatgaryTD

    William Loopinski FTW

    27 Aug 2014 Reply
  • a___-___a

    William Loopinski [2] ? lol

    20 Aug 2014 Reply
  • All 741 shouts

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