Kim Gordon ‘The Collective’ ⟡ Zamilska

— ZDB at Capitólio

Kim Gordon ©Danielle Neu
Zamilska ©Agata Hudomiet

There is relevance and there is relevance. And there are various ways of maintaining this relevance. Some artists choose to play with time and go with what the times tell them to do, keeping up with the present through a sound idea, even if borrowed, detaching themselves from the original message. Then there are those for whom the relevance is the message, it doesn’t matter what the world thinks of them or how they did it, what matters is transmitting the message, adapting it to the times, making it felt at very high volume, even if there is only silence. It takes power to do that, right? More importantly: will. Kim Gordon is in this last example. You wouldn’t expect anything else.

We could say Kim Gordon is visiting us at a very important moment, but for her every moment is like this. Her artistic life has been one of transforming the world, of not stagnating, of looking ahead with the will to change. That’s how it was with Sonic Youth, at all times, even when we asked them not to be, because we didn’t think it was necessary. They carried on, always with that relevance, because they knew that part of their power was not that of an institution, but to be rebels, to keep telling us that we could be like that too. The band’s hiatus, fuelled by the end of her marriage to Thurston Moore in 2011, didn’t invite Kim Gordon to stop, she didn’t rest on her laurels and her achievements. She carried on, wrote a book about being “The Girl in the Band”, continued with free music and with Bill Nace started Body/Head, until her solo career made sense and here we are, “The Collective”, the work from 2024 that she is now presenting in Lisbon.

It’s this latest album that forces us to talk about relevance, because of the way Kim Gordon takes risks and wins us over with an approach that fuses trap, industrial and noise and results in the noise we need for these confusing times. “The Collective” is heard as the noise of the streets, the malaise, a tearing thing that echoes the present and the fear of the future. A soundtrack for an election year in the United States and, we can guess, this context will affect the way we listen to Kim Gordon in November (she will be on stage at the Cineteatro Capitólio a few days after the US elections). Just as it is that noise, “The Collective” is also the soundtrack to incite us, the sound we need to get moving and get out of the house. It’s not the sound of revolution, because Kim Gordon is well aware that she should no longer be the one to make it, but it is the harmony – or lack thereof – of how we should seek it. Cause, consequence and action happen in Kim Gordon’s present. That’s how we’ve always heard her, that’s how she wants to continue to be. Relevant, yes, but above all with us here, in the present. On the street. AS


ZAMILSKA’S heavy, rhythmic sounds are filled with lots of bass. Though associated with techno, her music reaches way beyond the definition of the genre and it oscillates between electronica, world music and noise. She takes inspirations from various sources: raw sounds taken from native Silesia, precisely interlaced with tribal chants and oriental elements. Holding sturdiness of an industrial grinder, pensive yet melodic, trance-like. At home, she has played on the biggest stages in Poland, worked with acclaimed local artists as well as set ups like Philharmonic orchestra and been nominated for the Polish equivalent of Grammy for three of her albums. Abroad, her tracks were played on Radio BBC 6 Music by no other than Iggy Pop, Mary Anne Hobbs and Tom Ravenscroft. Nine Inch Nails recommended one of her tracks on their official Spotify playlist. She’s worked on various musical (remixes) and fashion projects. She also toured Europe playing festivals such as Transmusicales, CTM, Primavera, Norbergfestival, TodaysArt, Insomnia, Fantoche among many other.

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