Friday, March 21, 2008

The Stroy


The name of the urban tribe THE STROY comes from a Slovenian word ‘stroj’ which means ‘machine’. Pronounced together with ‘the’, we get ‘destroy’, therefore THE STROY is a pun, playing with two meanings: machine and destruction.
THE STROY story has begun in 1997, when a group of percussionists, craftsmen, artists and enthusiasts from Laško, Slovenia, first realized an idea of huge mechanical sound machine that should sound like articulated noise orchestra, driven by hypnotic rhythms and powered with their bodily energy. Fanatic enthusiasm had fulfilled their vision of how to research and develop their sonic totem – STROY - while articulating their unique sound language. THE STROY combines powerful and complex rhythms with extraordinary ‘handmade’ noises, astonishing sounds of selfmade blowing and string instruments together with spectacular lightning, glass walking with dangerous pyrotechnic and heavy tools of the past, all in relation with high technologies of the future. Their music brings us unique and futuristic sound, an exciting mixture of industrial, techno, rock, ethnic and jazz influences, played and performed with heavy, rusty and strange looking instruments and ‘noisers’. The sound of the machine is upgraded with extraordinary electronic effects and sound manipulations by their producer and mixman Aldo Ivancic.

In a decade of their existence and resistance, THE STROY has taken part in many important festivals across Europe and Asia (Big Torino 2000, EXPO 2000, BBC Music Live 2002, Stockton Riverside Festival '03 & '05, Singapore Art Festival 2005...) and gained the reputation of being one of the most powerful, innovative and breath taking performing groups of today.

Musical approach and sound explorations of THE STROY collective is developing major musical principles of the avantgardes in last hundred years from Luigi Russolo and his noise experiments with 'intonarumori', new musical concepts of John Cage and music concrete, to the industrial rock bands like Einsturzende Neubauten, Les Tambours du Bronx, Laibach and others. On the other hand, THE STROY follows the fundamental and traditional playing techniques, where sound is always produced with motoric action toward specific 'material' instrument or an object, so the basic root of THE STROY sound grows from vibrations of different materials and they call it 'material music' . In a booklet of their latest CD 'The Zone' (2006) they wrote:

“We explore the sonority of material and restore the materiality of sound. Material music transforms the instinct into a force, and the force into vibration. Hammer blows are inscribed in the beaten steel. Each of them leaves an imprint as a dumb witness of vibration – the blow has released it from materiality. Material music researches and listens. It trusts in the unconscious and explores according to the principle: ‘I do not know what I search for, but I know that I will find it.’

Dumps, abandoned factories, blind railway tracks, rusted machines, intact dust, smell of the old, objects with weight …The world is dirty and every attempt to clean it generates nothing but more dirt. We are not interested in a clean and orderly world, but rather in the beauty of waste and the poetics of refuse.
The sound is carved. The material vibrates. Vibration is the spirit of the material. The world vibrates, pulsates and resounds. Creating vibration and setting up the rhythm. All this is music.”


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