String Things - selfconstructed instruments

Het Oeral Joop van Brakel is a guitarist. He acquired his musical experience in a number of the New Wave bands, including the group NASMAK.

In the Festival he mainly played a variety of self-made semi-acoustic zithers, which are amplified with electro-magnetic pick-ups and can be played with the fingers, bows or drumsticks. Joop van Brakel built these instruments, which he called Aggots, because he needed string instruments with a percussive character, on which not only tonal but also concrete music is possible. Neither hindered or limited, nor driven or supported by any theoretical framework, Joop van Brakel works on exploring and taking stock of his Aggots and their sound possibilities.

Besides this, he builds instruments that have an absurd, theatrical character, such as his sperical bass - Het Oeral - which uses half a globe of the world as a resonance box, or the bird cage with the sound of a canary issuing from a Walkman.

from: ECHO - The Images of the Sound
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