– The London Sinfonietta has announced Sinfonietta Shorts, a series of miniatures by some of the world’s leading composers to celebrate the ensemble’s 40th anniversary. Contributors include Tom Jenkinson (Squarepusher), Mira Calix, Hans Abrahamsen, Luke Bedford, Harrison Birtwistle, Pierre Boulez, Jonathan Harvey, Anna Meredith and others. The event will be held Saturday, December 13 from 9 PM to 1 AM at Spirit Level of the Royal Festival Hall in London.
– Google is putting together a YouTube Symphony Orchestra that will hit Carnegie Hall in five months to perform — for the first time together — Chinese composer Tan Dun‘s Internet Symphony No. 1, Eroica. Classical and non-conventional musicians can submit YouTube videos of themselves playing Tan’s composition and a piece of standard repertoire in order to get into the orchestra.
– On December 11 at the Brooklyn Masonic Temple, Dan Deacon will unveil his new live set, which features a 15-piece live ensemble performing material from his forthcoming album, Bromst, which will be released on Carpark on March 24, 2009. Deacon plans to tour with an ensemble in 2009 in support of the new record, which promises to be a prominent new chapter in his musical career.
– Bassist Kevin Rutmanis (Cows, Melvins, Tomahawk) will have his first solo art gallery showing of paintings and sculptures from January 7 to February 17 at DIY Gallery in Los Angeles. His latest musical offering, Hepa-Titus, plays at The Smell in LA on February 12.
– For The Ichthyologist, its upcoming album, prog/doom-rock band Giant Squid has announced the appearance of a few guest musicians — Anneke van Giersbergen (ex-Gathering, Agua de Annique), Karyn Crisis (Crisis), and Kris Force (Amber Asylum, Neurosis; no relation to ALARM publisher Chris Force). The album was recently recorded with producer Matt Bayles and will be limited to a few thousand copies, available only through the band.
– The Dead Kenny Gs began a West Coast tour last Thursday that runs through December 13. Led by saxophonist Skerik and percussionist Mike Dillon of Critters Buggin fame, the trio grabs a third member for performances — recently, bassist Brad Houser, also of Critters Buggin — and throws down some wild grooves.
– Fantômas has been added to Australia’s Big Day Out festival, performing The Director’s Cut in its entirety.
– Kevin Kmetz, the heart of Japanese/metal fusionists God of Shamisen, joins with two additional shamisen masters to perform the Monsters of Shamisen California tour through December 20.
– Chicago saxophonist Charles Gorczynski, one half of Ropeadope ambient jazz/IDM duo Silences (Sumire), has released a pair of solo releases for free download on his personal website, claritymusic.net.
– Rapper Yak Ballz of the Brooklyn hip-hop collective Weathermen has issued the online video premiere of “Dirt Empire,” a solo single produced by Aesop Rock.
– Melodic/experimental indie rockers The Appleseed Cast will release Sagarmatha, their follow-up to Peregrine, via The Militia Group in January. A West Coast and Midwest US tour will follow in February.
– Three One G is offering 20% off of everything in its online shop. Holiday deals!