Le rock des expérimentateurs: Frank Zappa, Henry Cow, Stormy Six, Yugen
Jacopo Costa

Editions Delatour
2023 January 30
ISBN-13: 978-2752104588
320 pp, paperback, 25,5 x 17,5 cm

Jacopo Costa
Jacopo Costa
musician & musicologist

Preface by Philippe Gonin (automatic translation)
Despite the undeniable presence of trends that can be described as experimental throughout the history of rock, discussing "experimental rock" as a distinct musical genre remains problematic.

This book explores the approaches of musicians and groups that, while rooted in the rock tradition, go beyond the boundaries - both stylistically and sociologically and economically - inherent to rock. The musical aesthetics of Frank Zappa, the Rock In Opposition collective (specifically Henry Cow and Stormy Six), and the Italian group Yugen, all fit within the same tradition of experimentation, yet they do not result in similar productions from a stylistic standpoint.

Moreover, the reflections undertaken by these artists on the economic, social, and even political issues related to their musical activities prove that experimentation is not merely a matter of aesthetics.

The research in this book follows a multidisciplinary approach.

Firstly, it addresses the defining characteristics of rock, at the musical, sociological, and economic levels, and seeks to understand to what extent the notion of experimentation has integrated into rock throughout history.

Subsequently, the examples provided by Zappa, Henry Cow, Stormy Six, and Yugen allow us to discuss concretely the relationship between rock and experimentation, through musical analyses and the description of the socio-economic positioning of these artists.

About the author:
Jacopo Costa is a musician and holds a doctorate in musicology from the University of Strasbourg. The main subjects of his research include Frank Zappa, Rock In Opposition, the Canterbury scene, as well as the political aspects related to musical experimentation and its reception. He studies these topics from the perspectives of music history, music analysis, and cultural studies. Since 2013, he has been teaching at the Music Department of the Faculty of Arts at the University of Strasbourg. He is a member of the CREAA laboratory (Center for Research and Experimentation on Artistic Acts). He is the founder of the art rock group Loomings and performs both as a soloist and in collaboration with several groups such as Oiapok, Yugen, and Ske.

This paperback book is also digitally available.


Editions Delatour
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