Pan Am Scan
Pan Am Scan are an experimental improvisational band including live-generative visuals with Simon Harris (electronics), Jan Thoben (drums, percussion, objects), Kassian Troyer (guitar), Masayoshi Fujita (vibraphone), Derek Shirley (double bass), and Rainer Kohlberger (live-generative visuals). We've known about their wonderful work for a while now through our mutual friends The Boats, as well as through our mate Yas over at Flau. They even did a split release on The Boats label (Our Small ideas) with them in 2008 called 'Stenography', as well as submitting a piece for a Flau compilation later that year.After being in touch for a little while, Simon very kindly agreed to do a reworking for the 'Slow Films In Low Light' album in 2010 with Pan Am Scan. In summer of 2012 they finally released their first full debut together under their given names to differentiate from the live visual element of work under their Pan Am Scan guise.
'Tesseract' was pieced together from live recordings made over a weekend session at Ausland in Berlin during 2008 by a group of artists that enjoy operating around prepared external disciplines. Commonly, the line-up interpret abstract visual scores with a diverse spectrum of sound generating devices of both acoustic, analogue and digital origins. Their experiments weaved together a carefully interconnected stream of signals, processes and manipulations to create densely shimmering electro-acoustic textures.
They specialize in coarsely textured blankets of sound that take in crystalline cymbal-showers, bell-like resonances and electronic impulses punctuated by tactile percussion patterns.
Here's a little more information about the Pan Am Scan crew as they appeared on the 'Tesseract' release for Home Normal:
Simon Harris (Electronics)
Simon is a fairweather Berlin-based sound artist. His installation works utilise fragile audio feedback systems to reveal the acoustic properties of spaces. For live performances he uses live sampling extensively, alongside various self-built software systems, and he has a soft spot for sine tones.
Masayoshi Fujita (Vibraphone)
Originally from Tokyo, Masayoshi is a vibraphone player and has released solo work as El Fog on Moteer and Flau and collaborates with Jan Jelinek. Masayoshi seeks to develop his own sound from the vibraphone, and explores new possibilities with it. He regularly tours internationally.
Jan Thoben (Drums / Percussion)
Jan is a Berlin based musician whose projects include Taunus (Ahornfelder), Gaston (Beau Rivage) and Kinn (Audio Dregs). He also works together with composer and sound artist Boris Hegenbart, combining electronically prepared drums with digital audio processing. Jan is currently working on his PhD thesis in musicology and is doing research on audiovisual media art.
Kassian Troyer (Guitar)
Having studied as a Tonmeister in Vienna, Kassian relocated to Berlin where he works as a mastering and live engineer, as well as producing solo material for Dial. He has worked with artists such as Radian, Pan American, Fennesz and Jan Jelinek.
Derek Shirley (Double Bass)
Born 1975 in Ottawa, Ontario and now lives in Berlin. He is active in the fields of improvised music and noise. He is a member of, among others, Monno, Coal Oven, Michael Thieke’s Unununium and the Vladislav Delay Quartet. He has record releases on Charhizma, Japan-Improv, and Schraum.
Seeing as they are really a live-visual act, it would be rude not to show some videos of them playing their wonderful work live really:
You can stream, share and buy 'Tesseract' by Fujita, Harris, Shirley, Thoben, Troyer here:
You can stream, share and buy 'A Film by Pan Am Scan' from 'Slow Films In Low Light' here: