All posts by dieter

Show 554: Hertz-eer (XLAIR)

In honour of our precious friend Martine Ketelbuters (1966-2015) – head teacher of the RITCS Radio Department (2002-2015)

“Radio play loves edges, radio play loves Martine…”

Words spoken by Gregory Whitehead, both friend & source of inspiration for Martine: his work is the biggest source of inspiration for this tribute.

Martine Ketelbuters; Gregory Whitehead; Joris Vandamme; Dieter Van Dam : Hertz-eer (met fragmenten uit o.a. ‘In the end’, ‘Nothing but fog’ en ‘The Big Sloppy’ van Gregory Whithead, ‘ik zal het u vertellen’ van Joris Vandamme en werk van Martine Ketelbuters) – een montage van Dieter Van Dam door Martine Ketelbuters; Gregory Whitehead; Joris Vandamme; Dieter Van Dam – Eigen Opname RITCS – [0:19:08]

Martine Ketelbuters

(Herz-eer in ENG = Herz-honour, but in Dutch also means pain of the heart or sadness)


Show 529: double trouble (XLAIR)

This show has two parts:

PART 1 (0’00”-11’00”)

Départ, Arrivée

by Amber Meulenijzer, Lukas De Clerck, Lise Bonduelle

Temperature influences the speed at wich sounds travels.
We created a space where it gets colder and colder at one side, while at the other side it gets hotter and hotter. Two systems created by one microwave oven and one fridge. In turn, they create at their hand an ominous, mysterious feeling where the sound has to travel trough. Sounds will travel faster, slower, become one or disappear in the inertia of space.

PART 2 (11’00-28’00) =


by Dieter Van Dam, Alma Soderberg and Hendrik Willekens

this piece is an excerpt from a radio remix of the voice performance ‘Idioter’ by choreographer Alma Soderberg & musician Hendrik Willekens. Together they create a concert performance in which Willekens’ music supports Söderberg’s bodily movements and voice. She plays with syllables, intonation, cadence, gestures and dream language – creating a play between intensity and rhythm. The focus is on the flow. In addition the work includes drawings by Willekens: geometric landscapes that disappear into a single vanishing point. He makes these drawings over and over again whereby the expansion of the landscape becomes a theme in the work; each time the viewer is drawn towards the same ‘nothingness’.The audio was recorded in Het Stuk in Leuven on February 19th of this year. The sound recordings were then remixed with both influences for the performance and associated sounds by the artist.

Show 503: BXL Tableau Sonore

Three master students of RITS radio department (Lucas Derycke Cara Cobaert & Maarten Coosemans) capture a space in the city through audio recordings.  Afterwards they edit these field recordings (without artificial effects) in order to try and grasp the specific sonosphere of that location. The students were assisted by Guy de Bièvre (

Show 480: The Pataphysical Tape Cut Up (a tribute to the work of Felix Kubin) by Dieter Van Dam for XL AIR

The new XL AIR contribution is a sample based homage to the brilliant work of musician and radio artist Felix Kubin. The piece is build up around various fragments, most of them taken from Kubin radio experiments and music productions, some parts taken from releases on his Gagarin record label and interwoven with some bits and pieces from other artists, regarded as a source of inspiration by the artist himself (Sun Ra, Yuri Gagarin and Gregory Whitehead to name but a few)


Show 431: Tuned City Brussels student mix (XL AIR)

The re-entry of XL AIR is a show that consists of various excerpts from radio pieces the RITS radio students made in order to document their installations made for the Brussels version of Tuned City, a platform which proposes an examination of the relations between architecture and sound.

The project draws the traditions of critical discussion about urban space within the architecture and urban planning discourse–as well as its strategies and working methods–into the context of sound art. This expanded discussion reenforces the potential of the spatial and communicative properties of sound as a tool and means of urban practice.

At the foundations of this event are artists’ works and theoretical approaches which examine in a critical and sensitive way the given urban and architectural situations alongside their resulting socio-political implications, that re-use existing spaces or that conceive and open new spaces.

A dialogue will be built at the intersection of both disciplines which traces out the complex relations and interactions of space-sound, both presenting and testing new strategies, methods, possibilities and potentials of sound work within the artistic and applied context.

All info:

Show 368: voxpop by XL AIR

This XL AIR production consists of a remix radio composition that builds on material used in RITS installations that were created for Bozar Night in November 2011. They both embrace the human voice as a musical instrument.

The first installation was created collectively by the students of the masterclass audio (Tomas Vogels, Simon Vandegracht and Renee Vermeire) and is based on a musical composition  that uses only the vowels of speech.

The other installation is called ‘Vozombrascimento’ and was created by Dieter Van Dam. The Portuguese words ‘voz’ (voice), ‘sombra’ (shadow) and ‘nascimento’ ( birth) form the name of this soundtrack consisting out of manipulated voice traces of a newborn human being.

A cry is the anticipated proof of new life. Not a breath. Not a song. Not a word. A cry. This installation was placed in a big echoing space that suggested a sonic shadow of the primordial human cry by using and manipulating recordings of a child’s s singing in his first year of life.

Show 346: Field Background Radiation (by XL AIR)



Field Background Radiation Noise

Field Fest was a Brussels based festival on today’s use of field recordings in the arts, organized by sound loving organization Q-O2 as the official opening of their ambitious ‘Sounds of Europe’ platform. The four day event was an intense and elaborate introduction into sound exploration, a challenging exercise in listening skills and a tangible anthology of the artistic potential of sound recording.

This XL AIR radia adaptation of the festival tries to (re)create an imaginary map of ‘Field Fest’s background radiation noise’: a radio score of the most contagious psychoacoustic traces still echoing in the collective memory of the participants. A poetic patchwork of static leftovers etching the event’s most persistent influences on the auditory immune systems of the constitutive artists. The aim of the program is to evoke the festivals’ sonospheric depths through the suggestive power of intimate (re)collection and sonic autohypnosis.

Artists involved:

–          Justin Bennett

–          Eric Lacasa & Philip Samartzis

–          Martiensgohome

–          Peter Cusack

–          Manu Holterbach

–          Anne Wellmer

–          Mecha / Orga

–          Annea Lockwood

–          Els Viaene

–          Michael Pisaro

–          Pauwel De Buck

–          Toshiya Tsunoda

–          Manfred Werder

–          Lee Patterson

–          Jez Riley French

–          Jason Kahn

Rather than some conclusive retrospect, we hope to offer a new prospect: a thought-provoking hymn of sparkling contemplation, an intriguing symphony of strangely connected memories, a polyphonic conglomerate of Field Fests’ background radiation noise

Produced by Dieter Van Dam with special thanks to 3d Bachelor of Rits radio study.

A special thank you to the kind Q-O2 crew (Ann, Julia, Ludo and Jeroen) and of course all artists involved.


Show 306: audio diary of a Chris Watson workshop by Dianne Weller

XL AIR asked Dianne Weller to report on her wild cart into a Chris Watson workshop:
I was lucky enough to be granted access to be a participant in this workshop of the UK based Sound Artist Chris Watson, run by the Rits Radio Department last October 2010.

My inspiration for doing so, was to extend my artistic practices from a vocal performer into sound design and installation work. Since Chris Watson has a diverse background working in music, documentary, film and installation work I thought what better mentor would there be to introduce me to this new and challenging arena.  I don’t mean to sound flippant and as a complete novice to this world, but it was In short,  an experience equatable to learning to be a fighter jet pilot in just a few short days! With his ease and gracious style of lecturing Chris has a impactful manner in imparting his immense knowledge on the subject he is clearly passionately living – Sound. This workshop was centering around the sounds  of the city and we exposed ourselves to the sounds of Brussels and what it has to offer us through the visionary ears of Chris Watson.

I had no idea of what to do with the material I was collecting at the beginning of the week then finally by the end of the journey thought the best way to capture this was to formulate it into this audio Diary I had made of my own experiences. These sound scapes that fill the diary are a collection of the collaborative work of the group and Chris’ personal samples.

Now I feel I have a good headstart to venture into the world of sound.

Dianne Weller