14–16 Oct 2005
The Arches, Glasgow

A cast of pioneering spirits over an expanded three day festival including Jandek (one year on from his first ever show at INSTAL 04), JO-JO, Tetuzi Akiyama,Tom Bruno, Pauline Oliveros, a legendary Hijokaiden performance and Henri Chopin.

What we said at the time

At the Subcurrent festival this year Tony Conrad spoke about what it was that drove him to make some of the most liberated music of the 20th Century – it’s funny and enlightening how simple it turned out to be.  Of course he could already play: he’d practised, had his interest piqued by eastern approaches to drone and duration; but at the end of the day what drove him on was simply that he had this desire to hear a certain music, almost as though his personal and emotional make up demanded it.  Nobody else was making anything remotely like what he needed to hear, so he thought he’d better do something about it. It sounds off-hand to start with, but really what Conrad was saying (I thought at least) was that his personality demanded that he give voice to those emotions and express them in a way that was pure and true to him and him alone – unmediated by any previous hackneyed idiom or language he didn’t understand.  He needed to find his own language, even if he eventually ended up unsatisfied, startled or broken in trying.  That takes guts.

This year Instal offers you a cast of pioneering spirits who every day make these same demands of themselves in order to find their own musical language and operate in their own terms, outside the mainstream and in search of new personal and musical truths.  That’s what makes music exciting to us – it’s why we believe that free improvised and experimental music is the most gripping and direct of musics.  It’s also why we believe that if you come to this festival, take a chance and explore the work of those artists we honestly think are the most daring, provocative and magical performers in music today, you’ll leave having witnessed something new, true and bereft of all the bullshit and affection music industry oafs and media squares usually expect you to swallow. To share in these truths, these excitements, will take a little work on your part.  You’ll need to fork out for a ticket and come along to The Arches with an open, curious mind; but that’s not much work to be honest – the tickets are pretty cheap and everybody loves a surprise.  And anyway, aren’t the greatest truths usually found behind the greatest resistance?

Instal 05 was reviewed by Biba Kopf for The Wire here, Dan Baker for the Guardian here, Ali Maloney for the Skinny here, Jay Richardson for The Scotsman here.  Jandek's performance featured in The Wire's article "60 Concerts that Shook the World" in February 2007, you can read it here.


Supported by Scottish Arts Council, Scottish arts Council Lottery Funded, Glasgow City Council, Institute Francais, Japan Foundation, The Great British Sasakawa Foundation, Alliance Francais, PRS Foundation, The Wire, Volcanic Tongue, Analogue.

Thanks to Chris Dennis, Darri Donnelly, Alan Cummings, Tony Herrington, Kazuhiro Okuno, IONE, Brigitte Morton, Bob Pringle, Billy Leslie/ Sound Acoustics and all the staff at The Arches.