>>> CV

Drums and Soundart
Simon Berz
MTR Transdisciplinary Studies in the Arts
Drummer, sound artist, director of the Badabum music school born on 26 January 1967, Baden (CH)

Kleio: Database; Kultur mit System

Simon Berz
found-object electro-jazz wizard

“How can you give hope in art and amaze people?

Nickelsdorf. A town on the Hungarian border where a lorry with 70 bodies was stranded. And where they hold a free improvisation festival. The festival organizer hosted many refugees from the transit camp before they moved on. “Nickelsdorf” shows the other things a free jazz festival can do: such as including people in the community, showing humanity, reducing fear, and taking down barriers. Does a culture of hope really exist? That is what I am trying to find out.
It is actually rather easy to frighten people with art. But can you give hope in art and amaze people?

My creative process is energy. In nature, in dialogues with people. I am concerned with developing instruments, sound art installations, performances, languages and methods. My activities are based on listening and watching, on sound and materials research, on implementing experimental formats and their aesthetic mediation. In artist-run spaces as well as in public places, clubs, galleries or concert halls. My transdisciplinary work in experimental and improvised music, in sound art and new forms of performance aims at bringing about innovation, interaction and participation.

I am a drummer, sound artist and run a music school in Zug. I tour in Switzerland and all over the world as a solo artist, together with other musicians, groups, artists and with the drum students from my school.“

About Simon Berz

His work in experimental and improvised music, in sound art and new forms of performance aims at innovation, interaction and participation. Simon Berz is a drummer and sound artist. He uses improvised music to create bridges between his compositions and performances to visual arts, dance and film. His work takes place in artist-run spaces as well as in clubs, galleries and concert halls.
Since his youth he has been involved in developing instruments, sound/art installations and performances based on listening and observing, sound and materials research, on the implementation of experimental formats and their aesthetic mediation. As well as developing his own rhythmic and sound language through an electro-acoustic drumset called the Rocking Desk, he has also developed a “lithophone” consisting of stones producing a sound made by liquid dripping from drip bags that he amplifies and distorts electronically. In 2011, this sound installation was awarded the “Werkjahr des Kantons Zug” prize.

Simon Berz works together with instrument builders, technicians and scientists to design sound installations focussing on phenomena like resonance and feedback. How do you interact with ice, water, stone, air, wind and fire? What happens in the space between people? What is resonance in technical as well as in psychological and energy terms? The sound artist explores ways of making it possible to experience human energy fields or to allow the resonance produced by a self-playing stone to sound.

What drives Simon, and what he seeks to transform and convey aesthetically, is a “mingling” of acoustic curiosity and its technical implementation in combination with the surrounding context – in nature, in society. The sound material is crucial as is the space in which art and sound take place – whether a former Jewish fabric store in Langstrasse, Zürich, a volcanic landscape in Iceland, or Peiden, a tiny hamlet in the Grisons. Simon considers improvised music to be an unstable condition in which you can find yourself. It represents uncertainty, tension.

Once you accept that nothing is stable, you can react by means of creativity. In a situation of uncertainty, energy is the solution. Simon amplifies his material, develops flaws and “instability” and invites the audience, those attending and those performing to participate in an experience of a natural phenomenon, in an encounter with social developments. The performance by the Kofferorchestra (‘Suitcase Orchestra’) and 30 refugees in Zug, in August 2017, shows how art requires creativity in the moment, in the present. The acceptance of uncertainty by listening, watching and intervening involves artists, those present, those participating and the public.
It also raises awareness. With his interactions and interventions Simon Berz creates new forms that reveal creative options. While refugees indicate instability in society, the mountain hamlet of Peiden indicates the instability of nature. Peiden is slipping. The geological situation has been causing the church as well as the entire village to gradually slide towards the valley. This “stable cant” is an inspiring thought for Simon Berz and Dutch electronic artist toktek. This situation of instability, cracks and of the unknown led them to the idea of consolidating the entire house and village acoustically. The slippery condition became the manifesto of the Peiden album.

When Simon Berz rode his bike 2008 across a field of stone in the French Alps, he was immediately taken by the sounds the stones produced. He took some of them home to create a lithophon, which he then amplified and manipulated with electronic effects. As he scratches and strokes them or uses different sticks and materials to hit them percussively, he creates a dense and unique performance. For installation purposes, he lets water drop from infusion bags in various speeds, creating a complex and meditative sound piece.

Since 2009 Simon Berz has had a special relationship to New Orleans, the city where his Liquid Land project came into being, a continuation of the 10x10=>11 sound art project. He began to build instruments out of Objets Trouvés and to improvise on them together with musicians from New Orleans’ experimental jazz scene. The project led to a documentary and the Liquid Land CD, which were presented on a tour through the USA and in Switzerland. Currently Liquid Land is being continued with a new record in collaboration with Rob Cambre and Moose Jackson, who improvises lyrical moments with spoken words stemming from current situations.

in 2000 Simon Berz founded the BADABUM Atelier music school in Zug, running it with great enthusiasm and minimal resources. His public drum performances with his drum students, the Schepperkids, have been causing a sensation. The Schepperkids are from Switzerland, from abroad, they are disabled children, teenagers and refugees. A school, a network, the contribution of world stars: every year this leads to MONSTER GROOVE, a “social medley”, a concert with over 60 drummers, dancers, and famous guest musicians. Thanks to the annual organization, management and performance of this happening in the Chollerhalle, Zug, the participants, who come from all generations, cultures and lifestyles, including children and young people from varying walks of life, can celebrate the binding power of making music... through encounters, dances and food.

Drummer and electronic artist Simon Berz has toured through Japan, China, Russia, the US, Cuba, Iceland, Turkey and Europe, both as a solo artist and together with other musicians and groups. He works together with Toshinori Kondo, Kidd Jordan, Skúli Sverrisson, Kirk Joseph, Rob Mazurek, Mars Williams, James Singelton, Je? Albert, Dan Oestreicher, Aurora Nealand, Paul Lowens, Rob Cambre, Helen Gillet, James Singelton, Xu Fengxia, Willem Schulz, Niki Glaspie, Franz Hautzinger, Isabelle Duthoit, Dave Rempis, Jojo Mayer and many other artists. He makes regular guest appearances with the Zürich group Superterz. In 2017 Superterz performed every night for a whole month with Baby Sommer, Toshinori Kondo, Al Comet (The Young Gods), Burnt Friedman, Niels Petter Molvear, and Mauro Pawlowski (DEUS).

Simon Berz composes soundscapes and music for the theatre and films. Under his direction the IOIC Improvisationsorchester took part in the debut performances of the live scoring of three silent films at the Filmpodium Zürich and at the spin-o? Filmfestival Locarno. Further performances followed in Beijing, Shanghai, and at ART Basel Hong Kong.
Text: Claudia Rettore 2018

Portfolio Simon Berz Deutsch
Portfolio Simon Berz English
Simon Berz
Schlagzeuger, Klangkünstler, Leiter Musikschule Badabum
geb. 26. Januar 1967, Baden (CH)

„Wie geht es, in der Kunst, Hoffnung zu machen, zum Staunen zu bringen?

Nickelsdorf. Der Grenzort zu Ungarn, wo ein Container mit 70 Toten strandete. Und ein Festival, wo frei improvisierte Musik stattfindet. Der Festivalleiter hat viele Flüchtlinge im Übergangslager aufgenommen, bevor sie weitergezogen sind. «Nickelsdorf» zeigt, was ein Free Jazz-Festival auch leisten kann, nämlich die Aufnahme in die Gemeinschaft, Menschlichkeit, der Abbau von Angst, von Barrieren. Gibt es eine Kultur der Hoffnung? Diese Frage beschäftigt mich. Eigentlich ist es einfach, in der Kunst Angst zu machen. Wie aber geht es, in der Kunst, Hoffnung zu machen, zum Staunen zu bringen?

Mein Schaffen ist Energie. In der Natur, im Dialog mit Menschen. Die Entwicklung von Instrumenten, Klangkunstinstallationen, Performances, von Sprachen und Methoden durchdringt mich. Sie basiert auf Zuhören und Beobachten, auf Klang- und Materialforschung, Umsetzung experimenteller Formate und deren ästhetische Vermittlung. In Offspaces genauso wie in öffentlichen Räumen, in Clubs, Galerien oder Konzertsälen. Meine transdisziplinären Arbeiten in experimenteller und improvisierter Musik, in Klangkunst und neuen Aufführungs-formen zielen auf Innovation, Interaktion und Partizipation hin.

Ich bin Schlagzeuger, Klangkünstler, und leite eine eigene Musikschule in Zug. Solo, mit anderen MusikerInnen, Formationen, KünstlerInnen und den SchlagzeugschülerInnen meiner Musikschule bin ich in der Schweiz und international unterwegs.“

Über Simon Berz
Seine Arbeiten in experimenteller und improvisierter Musik, in Klangkunst und neuen Aufführungsformen zielen auf Innovation, Interaktion und Partizipation hin. Simon Berz ist Schlagzeuger und Klangkünstler. Ausgehend von improvisierter Musik kreiert er in seinen Performances und Kompositionen Brücken zu bildender Kunst, Tanz, Film. Seine Arbeiten sind in Offspaces genauso zu Hause wie im öffentlichen Raum, in Clubs, Galerien oder Konzertsälen.
Die Entwicklung von Instrumenten, Klang(-kunst)installationen und Performances beschäftigt ihn seit seiner Jugend. Sie basiert auf Zuhören und Beobachten, Klang- und Materialforschung, auf Umsetzen experimenteller Formate und deren ästhetische Vermittlung. Neben der Entwicklung einer eigenen rhythmischen und klanglichen Sprache mittels des elektroakustisch manipulierten Schlagzeugs «Rocking Desk» entwickelte Simon Berz das «Lithophon». Klingende Steine, die er elektronisch verstärkt und verfremdet, wobei die Klänge durch Tropfen aus Infusionsbeuteln erzeugt werden. 2011 wurde die Klanginstallation mit dem «Werkjahr des Kantons Zug» ausgezeichnet.

Als Schlagzeuger & Elektroniker tourt Simon Berz solo und mit anderen MusikerInnen und Formationen durch Japan, China, Russland, die USA, Cuba, Island, die Türkei und Europa. Er arbeitet mit Toshinori Kondo, Kidd Jordan, Skúli Sverrisson, Kirk Joseph, Rob Mazurek, Mars Williams, James Singelton, Jeff Albert, Dan Oestreicher, Aurora Nealand, Paul Lowens, Rob Cambre, Helen Gillet, Xu Fengxia, Willem Schulz, Niki Glaspie, Franz Hautzinger, Isabelle Duthoit, Dave Rempis, Jojo Mayer und vielen mehr. Simon Berz ist regelmässig Gast der Zürcher Formation Superterz. 2017 spielte Superterz einen Monat lang jeden Abend u.a. mit Baby Sommer, Toshinori Kondo, Al Comet (The Young Gods), Burnt Friedman, Niels Petter Molvear, und Mauro Pawlowski (DEUS).

Für Theater- und Filmproduktionen komponiert Simon Berz Soundscapes und Musik. Das IOIC Improvisationsorchester brachte drei Stummfilmvertonungen unter seiner Leitung im Filmpodium Zürich und am spin-off Filmfestival Locarno zur Uraufführung. Weitere Aufführungen folgten in Beijing, Shanghai und an der ART Basel Hong Kong.

Simon Berz plant in Zusammenarbeit mit Instrumentenbauern, Technikern und Wissenschaftlern weitere Klanginstallationen, welche den Fokus auf Phänomene wie Resonanz und Feedback legen: Wie interagiert man mit Eis, Wasser, Stein, Luft, Wind und Feuer? Was passiert im Abstand zwischen Menschen? Was ist Resonanz – technisch, aber auch psychologisch und energetisch gesehen? Der Klangkünstler sucht nach Möglichkeiten, um menschliche Energiefelder erlebbar zu machen oder die Eigenresonanz des sich-selbst-spielenden-Steins klingen zu lassen.
Es ist das «Ineinander» von akustischer Neugier und ihrer technischen Umsetzung im Zusammenspiel mit dem umliegenden Kontext – in der Natur, in der Gesellschaft – das, was Simon Berz antreibt, transformiert und ästhetisch vermittelt. Nebst dem Klang-Material ist der Raum, wo Kunst und Sound stattfindet, zentral – in einem jüdischen Tuchgeschäft an der Zürcher Langstrasse, in der isländischen Vulkanlandschaft, im Bündner Dorf Peiden. Improvisierte Musik sind für Simon Berz instabile Zustände, in denen man sich befindet. Unsicherheit, Spannung.

Akzeptiert man, dass nichts stabil ist, reagiert man mit Kreativität. Energie ist in der Unsicherheit die Lösung. Simon Berz verstärkt das Material, entwickelt Fehler und «Instabilität» und lädt das Publikum, die Anwesenden und Beteiligten ein zu partizipieren. Im Mitempfinden eines Naturphänomens, in der Konfrontation mit gesellschaftlichen Entwicklungen. Die Stadtperformance in Zug, im August 2017, mit der Kofferorchestra und 30 Refugees zeigt auf, wie Kunst Kreativität im Moment, in der Gegenwart fordert. Das Akzeptieren der Ungewissheit durch Zuhören – Beobachten – Intervention involviert Künstler, Anwesende, Beteiligte und Öffentlichkeit. Und sensibilisiert. Simon Berz schafft mit seinen Interaktionen und Interventionen neue Formen, die kreative Optionen aufzeigen. Signalisieren Flüchtlinge Instabilität in der Gesellschaft – signalisiert das Bergdorf Peiden die Instabilität der Natur. Peiden rutscht. Die geologische Situation bringt die Kirche und das ganze Dorf jedes Jahr ein Stück talwärts. Die «stabile Schräglage» ist für Simon Berz und den holländischen Elektroniker toktek ein inspirierender Gedanke. Das Instabile, Rissige und Ungewisse brachte die Künstler auf die Idee, ein ganzes Haus und das Dorf akustisch festzuhalten. Der rutschende Zustand wurde zum Manifest des Albums «Peiden».
Eine spezielle Beziehung entwickelt Simon Berz seit 2009 zu New Orleans, wo das Projekt «Liquid Land» entstand, eine Fortführung des Klangkunstprojekts 10x10=>11. Simon Berz begann aus Objets Trouvés Instrumente zu bauen und darauf mit Musikern der experimentellen Jazzszene New Orleans‘ zu improvisieren. Aus dem Projekt sind ein Dokumentarfilm und die CD «Liquid Land» entstanden, die auf Tour durch die USA und in der Schweiz vorgestellt wurden. 2013 wurde der Film an den Solothurner Filmtagen gezeigt. Aktuell findet «Liquid Land» seine Fortsetzung mit einer neuen Platte in Zusammenarbeit mit Rob Cambre und Moos Jackson, der mit Spoken Words lyrische Momente improvisiert, die aus gegenwärtigen Situationen heraus entspringen.

Simon Berz gründet 2000 die Musikschule BADABUM Atelier in Zug, die er seither mit viel Engagement und minimen Ressourcen leitet. Mit seinen SchlagzeugschülerInnen «Schepperkids» sorgt er im öffentlichen Raum mit perkussiven Interventionen für Aufsehen. Die «Schepperkids» sind SchweizerInnen, AusländerInnen, behinderte Kinder, Jugendliche, Refugees. Eine Schule, ein Netzwerk, die Bereitschaft von Weltstars mitzumachen: daraus entsteht jedes Jahr der MONSTER GROOVE, eine «soziale Plastik», ein Konzert mit über 60 SchlagzeugerInnen, TänzerInnen, renommierten Gastmusikern. Mit der jährlichen Organisation, Leitung und Aufführung des Happenings in der Zuger Chollerhalle zelebrieren alle Beteiligten quer durch Generationen, Kulturen, Lebensweisen mit Kindern und Jugendlichen aus unterschiedlichsten Verhältnissen die verbindende Kraft des Musizierens. Mit Begegnung, Tanz und Essen.
Text: Claudia Rettore 2018


contract work

>PHONAK Communications AG Klang Installation TROPF Murten 2021?
>TATORT Rebland Filmsaoundtrak Ephrem Lüchinger ORF SRF ARD Produktion D 2020
>„Swiss made in Russia“ Pro Helvetia Russia, Moskau, Russland 2017
>Suitcase Orchestra, Stadtperformance mit Refugees, Citykirche Zug, Schweiz 2017
>Kinder Kultur Woche mit Bettina Boller Küssnacht, Schweiz 2016
>Leitung und Komposition IOIC Impro Orchestra, Kino Uto und Filmpodium, Zürich, Schweiz 2014
>“Schraffur“ von Fritz Hauser mit den Schepperkids, Casino Zug, Schweiz 2012
>Museum für Gestaltung, Performance und Klanginstallation Max Huber, Zürich, Schweiz 2009
>Shopping – Beats mit Schepperkids, Sechseläuten Zürich, Schweiz 2007
>Kunsthaus Bonnefanten, Ausstellung Xiloseum, Maastricht, Holland 2006
>Lange Nacht der Museen, Kunsthaus Zürich, Schweiz 2006
>Schepperkids at Zirkus Knie, Schweiz 2005
>SCHREIBEN - MACHT - LÄRM! 225 Jahre NZZ, Zürich, Schweiz 2005
>Eröffnung Zuger Bahnhof mit Lichtchoreografie von James Turrell, Schweiz 2004
>650 Jahre Zug, Zuger Symphonie mit Hans Kennel, Zug, Schweiz 2002
>BADABUM at EXPO 2002, Yverdon, Schweiz 2002



Andi Moore Angela Rabaglio, Angela Stöcklin, Apparat, Aurora Nealand | Bill Laswell, Baby Sommer, Brad Walker, Bettina Boller, Bit-Tuner, Brent Bagwell, Brian Haas, Brain Seeger, Bruno Amstad, Bryan Eubanks, Burnt Friedman | Camilla Sparksss, Carlos Zingaro, Christian Weber, Cyril Bondi, Christian Fischer | Damo Suzuki (CAN), Dan Oestreicher, Dave Rempis | Eric Bloom, Ephrem Lüchinger | Flo Stoffner, Francois Chalet, Franz Hautzinger, Fredy Lüscher | Galoppierende Zuversicht | Hans Hassler, Hans Kennel, Hans Koch, Hanspeter Pfammatter, Harald Hearter, Helen Gillet, Humberto Quijano Ramos | Isabelle Duthoit | James Singelton, James Turrell, Jeff Albert, Jeroen Visser, Jessica Huber, Jessica Lurie, Jimi Tenor, Johanna Borchert, John Singlair, Jojo Mayer, Joke Lanz, Justin Peake | Kondo Toshinori, Karin Arnold, Kaspar König, Kevin Schott, Kidd Jordan, Kirk Joseph, Klaus Janek | Lauren Newton, Lee “Scratch“ Perry, Lionel Friedli, Louis Schild, Ludger Hennig | Mauro Pawlowski (dEUS), Marcel Vaid, Mars Williams, Martin Krusche, Michael Günzburger, Michelle Ettlin, Mike Dillon | Niels Petter Molvear, Niki Glaspie, Norbert Möslang | Paul Lowens, Pfadfinderei | Raphael Ortis, Ravi Vaid, Rob Mazurek, Roger Rotor, Roland Dahinden | Shan Kenner, Simon Lott, Skúli Sverrisson | Thomas Maos, Thomas Peter, Thomas Sarbach, toktek, Timo Ullmann | Urs Leimgruber, Ursula Scherrer | Will Thompson, Will-y Strehler, Willem Schulz | Xu Fengxia | Yan Jun, Yann Leguay | Zule Guerra


festivals & concerts
>RETRO-SPEKTIVE einer Pandemie, Dangio Torre, Switzerland 2021
>Klangwelt Toggenburg Switzerland 2021
>TECTONIC Lithophon Solo Kunsthaus Zofingen 2020
>Kunsthaus Zürich Olafur Eliasson Vernissage (abgesagt) TECTONIC Simon Berz Solo 2020
>Semarang State University, Semarang Jawa, Indonesia 2019
>Guangdong Dance Festival Guangzhou, China 2019
>Blau Blau Records Takeover, Moods, Zürich 2019
>VIELJAZZ Festival Zug, Switzerland 2019
>Yushin Brothers, Krasnojarsk, Siberia Russia 2019
>OOAM Festival Baden, Switzerland 2019
>Willem Twee studio's Den Bosch, Holland 2018
>FIVER international Dancefilmfestival Naves Matadero Madrid, Spanien USA 2018
>Sägezahn Serie Schauspielhaus Wien, Östereich 2018
>NOIZEFest New Orleans, USA 2017/2018
>SuitcaseOrchestra, Zug, Schweiz 2017
>The Music Box, New Orleans, 2017
>Insomniasessions, Photobastei Zürich, Schweiz 2017
>DNK Contemporary Theatre Festival, Krasnojarsk, Russland 2016
>Opening Pro Helvetia Office Russia, Meyerhold Center Moskau, Russland 2016
>Powerstation of Art Shanghai, China 2016
>multiRAID Festival Istanbul, Türkei 2016
>Stummfilmmarathon, Zürich, Schweiz 2016
>Festival antigel, Genf, Schweiz 2016
>Theater brut Wien, Österreich 2015
>Festival Belluard Bollwerk International, Freiburg, Schweiz 2015
>Fabriktheater Rote Fabrik Zürich, Schweiz 2015
>MENGI, Reykjavik, Island 2015
>SKIF, St. Petersburg, Russland 2014
>AiR; Artist in Residence Moods, Zürich, Schweiz 2014
>Frameworks, München, Deutschland 2014
>KILBI Bad, Bonn Düdingen, Schweiz 2014
>VIDEO SOUNDART, Mailand, Italien 2014
>TAZ Festival, Ostende, Belgien 2014
>les digitales, Luzern, Schweiz 2014
>yeah yeah yeah Dance Festival, Zürich, Schweiz 2014
>youtopia-Festival, Ascona, Schweiz 2014
>Incubate, Thilburg, Holland 2013
>Worldtronics, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Deutschland 2013
>Solothurner Filmtage Solothurn, Schweiz 2013
>ArT Sengawa, Tokyo, Japan 2013
>Filmfestival, New Orleans, USA 2012
>Airlift Project, The Music Box, New Orleans, USA 2011
>Patterns+Pleasure, Amsterdam, Holland 2011
>WORM. Rotterdam, Holland, 2011
>High mayhem Festival, Santa Fé, USA 2009
>Sonic Cirquits, Washington, USA 2009
>Stromereien, Zürich, Schweiz 2009
>Berliner Kunstsalon, Berlin 2008
>Unsound Festival FAIT gallery, Krakow Polen, 2008
>Lange Nacht der Museen, Kunsthaus Zürich, Schweiz 2007
>Transmediale, Berlin, Deutschland 2005
>EXPO 2002, Yverdon, Schweiz 2002
>NUJAZZ Festival, Schweiz 1996

2019 Flex Scholarship Canton Zug, Artist in Residence, Marfa Texas, USA
2014 Freiraum Scholarship Curatorium Aargau, Artist in Residence, New Orleans, USA
2014 Freiraum Scholarship Center Cultural Canton Zurich, Artist in Residence, Iceland
2012 Werkjahr with the band Superterz, city of Zurich
2012 Recognition Award: Ernst Göhner Foundation, Landis & Gyr Foundation, City and Canton of Zug
2011 Werkjahr Canton Zug: Award of the sound installation «Lithophon», Canton Zug
2010 10 years BADABUM recognition award Canton Zug, Switzerland
2008 DIY Festival: Award for the sound installation "Stein auf Stein", Zurich, Switzerland
2004 Further education contribution of the canton of Zug, University of the Arts Berlin, Germany
2003 Art Studio of the Canton of Zug, Artist in Residence, Berlin, Germany
1998 Further education contribution from the canton of Zug, Collective School of Music, Drummers Collective New York
1996 Cultural contribution from the canton of Zug, Switzerland

2015 MAS FINE ARTS in Transdisciplinarity, Zurich University of the Arts ZHdK, Zurich
2007 KlangKunstBühne, Penelope Wehrli, University of the Arts, Berlin
2006 Hardware hacking & circuit bending, Nic Collins SGMK, Zurich
2003 KlangKunstBühne, University of the Arts, Berlin
2002 study visit, Steve Coleman, New York
1999 study visit, Jojo Mayer, New York
1998 Drummers Collective, Drum study with certification, New York
1981-1998 lessons with Chris von Hoffman, Baden; Fredi Lüscher, train; Jazz School Lucerne
1996-1997 Special Needs Education, basic studies of curative education with diploma, Zurich
1986-1991 teacher training seminary St. Michael, primary education with diploma, Zug


CUT OUT Solo Simon Berz
(2 x 7“ inch vinyl, 2014, Hula Honeys)
Cut Out was recorded on the Rocking Desk, Simon Berz’ extended drum set that includes piezo microphones, loudspeakers and effects. Berz plays his instrument with an array of modified drum sticks to evoke electroacoustic sounds, effect patterns and a broad variety of feedbacks.
The amplification allows close-up views of the sounding surfaces and structures, while the microphones do not only pick up the sounds played, but also the environment.The Rocking Desk embraces several sound spheres: traditional drum sounds, microscopic details and tonal feedbacks.The 50 loops included reveal a small fragment of the Rocking Desk’s sonic dimensions. The cover images were created by Simon Berz by drumming paint on to the paper while his loops were performed on three turntables.

FELL Kidsorchestra
(cd, 2014, Hula Honeys)
The Kidsorchestra was a temporary band. This EP documents a creative journey FELL undertook at Incubate Festival in late 2013 together with the Kidsorchestra. FELL collaborated with the kids in several workshops.
Starting out from scratch, they used any sounding material they could find, such as personal belongings, found objects and trash to build simple instruments. Using these, the Kidsorchestra produced rhythmic patterns and sounds, developed a tonal dramaturgy and a performance, found a rhythm, listened (to each other), danced, spoke rhythmically and used technology to discover their unique worlds of sound. The elements found on this EP were designed, tried out and modified collaboratively.
FELL recorded the sound figures and created four pieces of music out of the material by adding beats and melodies to the recordings of the Kidsorchestra and winding the recorded patterns, frazzled voices and athmospheric glimpses through a digital microcosm and the guts of selfmade electronics.
A co-production by Incubate, Badabum and Hula Honeys

(vinyl, 2012, Hula Honeys)
toktek (Holland) and Simon Berz (Switzerland) battle it out in supercharged music sessions. Playing their self-made electronic instruments/interfaces, they turn pure human emotion and body language into sound that results in a spasmic, sweaty conversation between toktek, Simon and their machines. Their Debut, FELL, is the result of excessive studio sessions in New Orleans.
The self titled debut EP FELL opens up a universe of living sounds. Both Simon Berz and toktek are masters of their instruments. The permutating songs are full of dynamic changes, fragile sound constructions mutate into a groove or a wide spread layer from one moment to another. FELL brings back organic textures to electronic music. The four tracks are full of dodgy, grooving beats, bulky micro sounds and wide spread sound layers.

(dvd/cd, 2012, badabum)
In the fall of 2010, filmmaker Michelle Ettlin joined Swiss musician Simon Berz and Dutch artist Kaspar Koenig came to New Orleans for an art project: building instruments from trash and inviting local musicians to improvise with them. The film Liquid Land uses these concerts, interviews with the musicians and scenes of New Orleans street life, rituals and celebrations to explore the confluence of creative music, the creative process and the creative energy that draws these musicians and keeps them in New Orleans in the wake of disaster.
After the experience of the 10x10=>11-project in New Orleans, documented in the film Liquid Land, Simon Berz wanted to continue the collaboration with the musicians that had been involved, wanting to capture some of the energy, joy, passion, integrity and madness, but also the social role of the music in New Orleans. Berz invited the musicians to the local Wunder studios to improvise and explore different sounds. He then went to on to combine these improvisations with field recordings and spoken words to create a cinematic audio experience which will be released on CD along with the DVD of the documentary.

(vinyl, 2010, everest records)
The moment – hard to be in it, even harder to catch it. The Duo Ige*timer has dedicated itself absolutely to that search of the moment. Klaus Janek and Simon Berz let their music grow out of the situation surrounding them. They’ve been on a tour through the States and at the concerts in Baltimore, Philadelphia and New Orleans they switched their recorder on. The three pieces on Ice Cold Pop are a documentation of their perception of these cities. Nothing is preset and nothing ist reused. Klaus Janek plays double bass and laptop and Simon Berz his handmade analog sound generators, electroacoustic drumsticks and whatever material he found on the journey and decided to use as an instrument. The pictures of the filmmaker Michelle Ettlin are inspired by these cities, the people and the music and make this journey not only audible but also visible to us. The project Ice Cold Pop is probably the most artful way to set up a travel documentation.

(cd, 2012 unit records)
Der US-amerikanische Künstler James Turrell hat die computergesteuerte Lichtchoreografie für die Performance im Bahnhof Zug geschaffen. Simon Berz initiierte in den Räumlichkeiten des neuen Bahnhofs Zug eine Interaktion zwischen den VJs Pfadfinderei, Sounddesigner Andrew Phillips und den Musikern Bruno Amstad (voc/electronics), Hanspeter Pfammatter (keys/electronics), Real Jesus (bass/electronics), Tsukiko Amakawa (keys), Markus Breuss (trumpet/electronics), Simon Berz (drums/electronics/concept). Bevor der Bahnhof seiner eigentlichen Aufgabe übergeben wurde, sollten die Einrichtungen künstlerisch bespielt werden. Die VJs bedienten sich dem bekannten Bildmaterial der SBB. Die Musiker spielten nach einem musikalischen Taktfahrplan, der immer neue Zusammensetzungen generierte. Bahnhofsansagen dirigierten deren Auftritte. Alle 12 Minuten kündigen Zugansagen den Auftritt oder das Ende eines Auftritts der Musiker an. Nach jeder Stunde benutzten die Musiker einen anderen "Zug". So entstehen immer neue Musikformationen. In dieser Nacht fuhren im Bahnhof Zug ausnahmsweise Züge aus der ganz Welt ein, bis um 6.00 Uhr der Bahnhof seiner eigentlichen Aufgabe übergeben wurde.

In 2003 the old train station of Zug, Simon Berz's former adopted home, replaced by a modern "Kirschtortenbau" with a light art installation by James Turrell.
He envisioned a musical revival before, a kind of ritual to pay homage not only the architecture, but also the people who were moving every day in it.
Simon Berz initiated in the hall of the new station train an interaction between the Berliner VJs Pfadfinderei, sound designer Andrew Phillips and the musicians Bruno Amstad (voc / electronics),
Hanspeter Pfammatter (keys / electronics), Jesús Turino (bass / electronics), Tsukiko Amakawa (keys),
Markus Breuss (trumpet / electronics) and himself on drums and electronics.
Simon Berz 'composition represented a musical interval timetable, the always generated new compositions. Station announcements certain entrances and exits of musicians. That night drove the train station exceptionally trains from the whole world, until at 6:00 clock and was handed over to the station its specific task.
When UNIT RECORDS Bern a snippet of live recordings of the evening appears. Seven tracks (tracks) are available on the CD for seven different formations. Merged they are of the familiar and precisely why irritating voices of station announcements, the musicians meet, communicate, until the encounter ends abruptly because the next train to be caught. The musicians blend dub and hip-hop beats with elements of jazz and rock.
"Reanimation" can not be put in drawers, is full of contrasts and strength, playfulness and joy in improvisation.

Walls by APPARAT
(Vinyl, CD 2007, shitkatapult records)
Walls is the third studio album by electronic musician Apparat, released in 2007. The album received positive reviews from critics, with Allmusic calling the album "remarkable" and saying that it "ranks as his best yet.". Pitchfork compared the album to the work of M83 and Slowdive, calling it "one of the best electronic dream-pop records in a while". Most reviews highlighted "Arcadia" as one of the finest tracks on the album. Simon Berz played drums on this tune.


Laudatio von Silvano Cerrutti Werkjahr 2011 "Musik ist ein Zustand"

Portfolio Simon Berz Deutsch
Portfolio Simon Berz English