If the headline of this news article made you instinctively look at your calendar to make sure it’s not April 1, you’re not alone. However, there’s more to this story than just a money-thirsty label figuring out how to sell a five-LP worth of silence on wax. Heck, by the end of this post, you might even be heading to their website to pre-order the damn thing.
As part of the imprint’s 40th anniversary celebration, London heavyweight MUTE has announced the May 2019 release of STUMM433, a box set collecting over 50 renditions of John Cage’s “4’33”” performed (“performed?”) by the label’s vast roster of artists. Depeche Mode, New Order, Liars, Moby, Wire, Ben Frost and others will all refrain from playing their instruments for exactly four minutes and thirty three seconds, in a homage to the 1952 piece that did for music what Duchamp’s Fountain did for art.
Here’s why the box set might actually be worth your money (and time): each artist has also created an appealing visual to accompany their “cover” of the composition, and the proceeds from the sales of the entire compilation will be split evenly between the British Tinnitus Association and Music Minds Matter charities; these organizations have been chosen to pay tribute to Inspiral Carpets’ late founder Craig Gill, who had battled tinnitus-related anxiety and depression in the years leading up to his death.
The very first visual from STUMM433 is available now and comes from the Slovenian avant-garde group Laibach. Watch it below (but first, here’s some white space):
STUMM433 featured artists:
A Certain Ratio, A.C. Marias, ADULT., The Afghan Whigs, Alexander Balanescu, Barry Adamson, Ben Frost, Bruce Gilbert, Cabaret Voltaire, Carter Tutti Void, Chris Carter, Chris Liebing, Cold Specks, Daniel Blumberg, Depeche Mode, Duet Emmo, Echoboy, Einstürzende Neubauten, Erasure, Fad Gadget (tribute), Goldfrapp, He Said, Irmin Schmidt, Josh T. Pearson, K Á R Y Y N, Komputer, Laibach, Land Observations, Lee Ranaldo, Liars, Looper, Lost Under Heaven, Maps, Mark Stewart, Michael Gira, Mick Harvey, Miranda Sex Garden, Moby, Modey Lemon, Mountaineers, New Order, Nitzer Ebb, NON, Nonpareils, The Normal, onDeadWaves, Phew, Pink Grease, Pole, Polly Scattergood, Renegade Soundwave, Richard Hawley, ShadowParty, Silicon Teens, Simon Fisher Turner, The Warlocks, Wire, Yann Tiersen