Dates & Facts


Kasper van Hoek (The Hague, 1982) started his musical activities in 2003 making heavily processed field recordings. Over the course of some 30+ releases and 100+ performances featuring looped electronic music, noise, musique concrete and ambient he now creates his own blend of improvised electronic music played on his own custom-built string instruments.

The several stages his music went through can best be seen as a series of investigations in sound. Kasper van Hoek started out working with sounds from all kinds of sources and manipulating them to various extends - getting to know the basic characteristics of sound. He started focussing on the compositional part with a series of releases featuring loop-based tracks made out of sound sources similar to those of his first recordings. Then things got a little noisy with the introduction of generated sounds extracted from broken record players and cassette decks in a feedback-looping mode. In 2008 the results of the various experiments merged for the first time. Examples are Den Haag/Groningen/Froombosch (cdr on dirtydemos) and A Light Year Of Sundays (cd on HeilsKabaal Records).

Den Haag/Groningen/Froombosch: Most tracks are actually collages of different spaces, with disparate elements overlapping in a surreal game of juxtapositions. With the field recordings firmly in the centre of attention, the underlying textures, often replete with subcutaneous tension and opaque harmonic structures, award these dense, delirating scenes a hallucinatory intensity and frightening darkness. (Tobias Fischer / Tokafi)

A Light Year of Sundays: frequently musical, using very unambiguous melodic fragments, yet always suggests an unforced touch of the beyond. [...] The album is abstractionism today, and Kasper - the disguised musician - the abstractionist. (Cookshop)

After these releases the changes in Van Hoek's music didn't arise from his interest in the various elements that made up his music until then, now his music as a whole led him in new directions. Van Hoek's challenge was to find a way to perform music on stage without being attached to using pre-recorded sounds and, at the same time, managing to make the music more dynamic and the emotion within more distinct. The solution for all of this was to change the live set-up so it featured traditional instruments and means to alter the sounds live in a more comprehensive and intuitive manner. After adding electric violin, melodica and a simple looping machine to the live gear and playing around with it for a while, it became clear that this was indeed the way to go forward but that it needed radical changes.

In 2008 Van Hoek enrolled in the Master's course Interactive Media and Environments at the Frank Mohr Institute to spend the next two years working on his new musical tools (both electric string instruments and hardware controllers for custom software in Max) and methods of playing live. In 2010 he got his Master Of Fine Arts degree. His graduation work consisted of a thesis on the 'pataphysical nature of his musical efforts, a solenoid-controlled string instrument, a self-built record shop and a live performance using instruments built during his studies.

In 2011 Van Hoek released De Valse Wolfskwint En Andere Fabeldieren (cd on HeilKabaal Records). This album consists of tracks recorded during his time at the Frank Mohr Institute. The album includes studio recordings and cut-up field recordings but most tracks were recorded using his newly developed string instruments. These recordings marked the point where – just as with A Light Year Of Sundays in 2008 – a couple of years' work came together.

De Valse Wolfskwint En Andere Fabeldieren: a very compelling collection of deep sounds performed with steady conviction and a determination to explore every corner of the aural labyrinths which Hoek is building for himself. Unfinished and vague in places, fer sure, but that is irrelevant when faced with such genuine thirst for experimentation. (Ed Pinsent / The Sound Projector)

After the release of De Valse Wolfskwint... van Hoek continued playing live on his custom-built instruments; solo performances but also more and more collaborative efforts with amongst others poet Anneke Claus, multi instrumentalist Jan Klug and bands like Sexton Creeps and Visuele Cirkel. Recordings of three performances from this period can be found on the 2011 release Waiting Is A Linear Time Machine Without Parts (four live pieces) (cd on Heilskabaal Records).