The music I make these days is based on story-telling. As a creator of instrumental music the story-telling dimension is extremely important for me. I play many musical instruments together with electronics... yes, I'm saying I PLAY the electronics! The technique for doing that is called Live Looping. Usually you record your own playing with foot controller pedals, loop it, bend it, hack it, crack it, whack it; all while you keep playing the acoustic instrument as part of this instant orchestration. In one go you become the composer, the director and every musician in the orchestra!
What others have said:
"Among the many festival highlights was Swedish synth/wood-wind player Per Boysen's Jon Hassel-like soundscapes". Guitar Player Magazine June 7/2007.
“This work is an outstanding set of experimental tracks that touches several styles of music with a common frame of looping. The tracks shows a great deal of experimentation and musical bravery. Maybe they are not easily listened to for everyone, but he manages to create a sound of his own and to reach some kind of ecstacy wall of noise and sound that I believe is what Philip Glass was all about in monolithic compositions like "Music in Twelve Parts" or "Einstein on the Beach", or Steve Reich's "It's gonna rain". Like it or not, Per Boysen have created a piece of pure minimalism beauty. I love the way he use the flute as a percussion in a very Jethro Tull/locomotive breath fashion in pieces like "Running Librarians" or "Infiltrating the Machines". Bosques de mi Mente, Jamendo.
What Per says:
“Multi lateral improvisation”
In jazz it is common that one musician improvises lead themes over a fixed chord structure background played by other musicians. In my music the same musician, or musicians, typically improvises both the lead themes and the chord structures at the same time. This multi lateral improvisation is made possible by advanced live-looping techniques. It is a very intuitive way of creating music.
Playing the music rather than the background - and vice versa...
I think “playing the music rather than the background”, as Ornette Coleman once put it, is one side of what I’m doing. The other side is that I’m “exclusively playing only backgrounds”. Whatever way the listener choses to interpret my music, there will always be some empty part of the screen to be filled in by the listening mind’s imagination. In my opinion this psychologic aspect of participation is a key element in “psychedelic” or “open” music. What happens is that these elements manifest as specific “virtual melodies” in the mind of the listener. And amazingly these seemingly imaginary virtual melodies respond directly to the directions, transitions and gestures that I use as my musical mind maps when I improvise my music in the first place. Even though I carefully leave them out, by not explicitly playing them, these undercurrents live on as the foundation that glues it all together. I guess I'm a typical "creative generalizer". I play music that is open, improvising, breathtaking and sometimes a complete failure.
Per Boysen has performed many live-looping shows in USA, Sweden, Switzerland and Italy, both as a solo performer and with ensembles. He is fond of multi media based collaborations, as for example when the Italian Festival Internazionale di Andria Castel dei Mondi 2006 gave him a budget big enough for assembling a temporary quartet, the Boysen Network Ensemble,to improvise a micro opera with amplified painting canvas percussionist and musicians clamped with cameras projecting over a big screen by the stage. He has also composed and produced recordings of surround soundtrack music for films in the DVD format.
The Swedish Art Grants Committee helped financing a few of Per’s projects. One such, particularly successful, event was the 1st Swedish Looping Tour 2003, that had interviews and concerts covered by the national public service television’s art documentary Musikspegeln while for the international audience by The Music Room of CNN. For this tour he invited Brasilian/Swiss guitarist Matthias Grob, inventor of the legendary Digital Echoplex Pro looping machine, and American looping percussionist Rick Walker.
As a consulting musician PerBoysen is also working with a row of software developers to help out in the creation of tomorrows musical instruments. Besides playing music he has also written expert studies for WIPO in Geneva, the Nordic Musician Union and The Swedish National Council for Cultural Affairs. Other works including books in Swedish on the music business as well as being a freelance journalist, editor and columnist for Scandinavia’s biggest guitar and computer music studio magazines. Per Boysen is also frequently booked as a speaker, trainer and consultant regarding Apple Logic, Ableton Live and assorted live-looping techniques.
Former credits include international major label releases with extremely visual punk-electronic dance-pop band Plastico (artist) as well as Swedish gold seller Peter LeMarc (studio musician). Per Boysen has also appeared in art performances directed by Swedish artist Dan Fröberg (Stockholm Art Show, “Nya Gärdesfestivalen” etc). Many other credits not mentioned here – but who cares?