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Old 12-16-2007, 07:21 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by cardboard adolescent View Post
Avant-garde is usually associated with modernism since a large part of that movement was "pushing boundaries." Thus, most minimalist, drone and early electronic music was considered avant-garde.

Edgar Varese is very important since he basically invented musique concrete and is considered the father of electronic music. Karlheinz Stockhausen did a lot of experimentation with electronic music as well, as well as chance-based compositions. Along those lines, John Cage is a very important avant-garde innovator as well, especially for his incorporation of Eastern philosophy into music theory. You have Stravinsky, I would mention Schoenberg as well for rejecting traditional tonality. Then there's the minimalist boys like Phillip Glass, Steve Reich, and Terry Riley. Post-minimalism includes artists like Glenn Branca. La Monte Young is probably the most important early composer for drone music, though many of the artists which champion it today are rock bands.

As far as free jazz goes, Ornette Coleman, Cecil Taylor, Albert Ayler and Sun Ra are some very important players. From Europe you have Peter Brotzmann who pretty much blasted his way through all sax-playing conventions.

John Zorn kind of keeps free jazz alive nowadays though often with very heavy rock and thrash influences, so bands like Naked City are pretty important as well. There's a lot of free improv music that doesn't easily classify into jazz or rock, some of which is fusion and some of which is simply neither. AMM are a very important early free improv band, and groups like A.D.D. Trio show off the more fusion side to it.

As far as avant-rock goes, the most obvious originator is Captain Beefheart, who basically threw free jazz and rock together for the first time on Trout Mask Replica and changed music. Then you've got stuff like The Residents who metamorphosed rock with their dada leanings; Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth, JAMC, etc. are all seen as very important regarding introducing noise as a viable stylistic element into rock music, with artists like Merzbow, Whitehouse, Nurse With Wound, and Throbbing Gristle taking that concept to its logical extreme (that is, they are noise artists).

On the drone side, you've got stuff like Sunn O))), Earth, and Boris giving minimalism that metal aesthetic.

You've got a ****load of other artists to work with as well, such as Fred Frith who does everything from noise to avant-pop, Jandek who is one of the more popular "outsider art" musicians, or John Fahey who brings avant-garde to folk music.

I don't know too much avant-garde metal, but Ulver gets namedropped a lot.

these are the genres I'd consider:

avant-rock (I would consider RIO a subgenre of this)
musique concrete
free improv
free jazz
noise / power electronics
minimalism / post-minimalism
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Old 12-16-2007, 09:41 PM   #12 (permalink)
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You might want to add Sun Ra to your free jazz list, as he really was quite an influence.

To be honest, I don't see why King Crimson isn't considered avant-garde. As much as I like the other prog giants like Genesis, Rush, Jethro Tull and Yes, I feel that none of them were anywhere near as original as King Crimson. Fripp's use of sonic textures, the atonality, the pure darkness/heaviness compared to other music at the time, the unique instrumentation (THRAK had 2 drummers, a bassist and someone on Chapman stick), the lyrical perspectives, their wild improvisational style etc. It's hard to describe... you really have to listen to it. They did (and still do) experiment quite a bit and this leads to most of their albums having a unique sound. I mean, they had a jungle (as in electronica) song released in 1981.

You could consider Meshuggah to be avant-garde. Given the fact that they stylise their music to be machine-like with polyrhythms and the Meshuggah riff style, the huge range of influences, the jazzy flowing solos, the use of repetition, complex rhythms and vocals as an instrument to produce a trance state... they could probably be considered avant-garde.

Ulver is a band I would consider avant-garde. They have their Black Metal Trilogie, of which one is folky black metal, one is straight biting black metal, and one is completely folky. Their following albums were electronic, trip-hop, minimalist, ambient... everything. Experiments in music...

I see Gorguts on your list, which is good. Perfect example of avant-garde metal.

Last edited by Seltzer; 12-16-2007 at 10:30 PM.
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Old 01-03-2008, 05:06 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Buckethead's also and avant-garde musician
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Old 01-27-2008, 02:06 PM   #14 (permalink)
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*excuse the bump*

So my project was a success. A lot of people liked it, some where disturbed but intrigued but I think many people were interested. Thanks for helping me out, I learned a lot from it and there are so many avant garde artists I listen to know. I appreciate all the help you gave.

By the way, Gates_of_Iscariot, who is the artist that plays classical over the satanic bible? It sounds interesting.
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Old 01-28-2008, 07:36 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Captain Beefheart is just as crazy as Frank Zappa and they did a lot of music together. As for underground acidjazz, try Modeski, Martin & Wood or Three Mile Pilot. Very good and a good influence on music. Music that is mainstream is so re-gurgatated that it doesn't hav much influence. Its the stuff that not many know people know about but those who do have a real appreciatation for good music and its timeless.
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