Benjamin J Mansavage Klein - the header image

The Edgar Allan Poe Suite, a new release featuring Fritz Novotny and Sepp Mitterbauer

I am proud to announce the upcoming release of THE EDGAR ALLAN POE SUITE  (Sporadic Tangible Documents STD 2-4) recorded between May 15 and 17, 2015 at the Studio Toile d’Angles in Minneapolis, MN.  This is a three CD set that features  reformARTunit (est. 1965) founding members Fritz Novotny and Sepp Mitterbauer with members of reformARTwest: Milo Fine, Elaine Evans, Daniel Furuta, Davu Seru, Charles Gillett, Paul Metzger, and myself.  These recordings present the first North American appearance of Fritz and Sepp in three concerts that occurred between that mid weekend in May. The set should be available from the website of Milo Fine by mid-February. 


While I am proud to announce this project, I do so with the regret that Sepp Mitterbauer is not with us personally to share in it.  Sepp passed on December 9, 2015 in Austria from complications with pancreatic cancer.  On December 30, 2015 concerts were given in his memory in both Vienna and Minneapolis by members of the refornARTunit and reformARTwest.  Below is a collage that uses recordings from a reflection I held on December 30 in Iowa City, Iowa dedicated to Sepp.

New Uses for Old Platforms

I’ve recently undertaken an overhaul of my Bandcamp and SoundCloud accounts, and I’ve decided to take a more “unprofessional” direction in this endeavor.  I found my early attempts at using these platforms, to launch DIY albums, to be rather unsatisfying.  Shortly after posting, I spent my time and energy on other projects, or on life events, than focusing on the hype needed to push these projects to successful levels. I’ve realized for a very long time, that using these platforms, as they may have been intended as launch pads for independent commercial success, was not in line with my own approach.

I am interested once again by Bandcamp and SoundCloud by considering how I can use the platform designs themselves as a basis for a creative project.   I use the tiling layout in Bandcamp as a way to present my work as though it were an advent calendar, a little surprise behind every door.  By clicking on different tiles, the person on the other end of the mouse encounters a new, strange, and contrasting track.  The soundfiles that lie behind each track aren’t intended to be a mastered commercial product, but instead a different experience than the one clicked on before.  By thinking of my Bandcamp page as a way to present my work as a mini web installation, the platform makes more sense to me. You can take a listen at:

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I have decided to use my Soundcloud as a sonic journal, or a curated collection of small, miscellaneous, sound objects that provides the mouse user with a rich array of items to peruse.  Again, not the mastered commercial nuggets, but snippets (as the terms originally applies if I were working in analog) of my perspective.

I am certainly not the first to present work like this online.  Some examples of others who have caught my attention are:

Chris Mann (the poet)

Costis Drygianakis

Ann Liv Young

Dale Gorfinkel