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The Polish electronic/avant-garde/new-classical bacchanal known as the Unsound Festival has been the pride of Kraków since 2003, luring sonic-minded thrill-seekers the world over with a veritable orgy of umlauts, consonants, and high-minded audio/visual splendor, mixing high-culture chamber-music grandeur with the lowest, deadliest bass dance music has to offer. Last year they brought the circus to New York City for the first time, and the locals were much intrigued; get ready, then, for Unsound Festival New York 2011. There’s a hell of a lot going on here; almost too much to process, which is very likely the point.
After several days of pre-game “labs” (“events, workshops, and panel discussions . . . that explore the idea of a “Festival as a laboratory”), the show officially runs April 6-10, with an opening night gala at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall starring the Polish group Sinfonietta Cracovia, paying tribute to Krzysztof Penderecki and Steve Reich before debuting a new piece titled “Music for Solaris.” Other highlights include electronic-music pioneer Morton Subotnick reprising his 1967 album Silver Apples of the Moon, the Bunker hosting a “Bass Mutations” night starring dubstep luminary Kode9 at Public Assembly, the No Fun Festival’s Carlos Giffoni curating a night of experimental electronic music at Issue Project Room, and, as a closer, a Blackened Music fete starring British “dark ambient” star Lustmord. Peruse the full lineup here; find something you’ve never heard of (which shouldn’t be hard), and then go hear about it.