Real Name:
Zbigniew Karkowski
Zbigniew Karkowski was born March 14, 1958 in Krakow, Poland; he passed away December 12, 2013 in Peru. He studied composition at the State College of Music in Gothenburg, Sweden, aesthetics of modern music at the University of Gothenburg's Department of Musicology, and computer music at the Chalmers University of Technology. After completing his studies in Sweden, he studied sonology for a year at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Den Haag, Netherlands. During his education, he also attended many summer composition master courses arranged by Centre Acanthes in Avignon and Aix-en-Provence, France, studying with Iannis Xenakis, Olivier Messiaen, Pierre Boulez, and Georges Aperghis, among others. He worked actively as a composer of both acoustic and electroacoustic music. He has written pieces for large orchestra (commissioned and performed by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra), plus an opera and several chamber music pieces that were performed by professional ensembles in Sweden, Poland, and Germany. He was a founding member of the electroacoustic music performance trio "Sensorband." Zbigniew had lived and worked in Tokyo, Japan for the past eight years, and was active in the underground noise scene there.
In Groups:


Zbigniew Karkowski Discography Tracks

Albums 002 Various Petrified By The Sum Of Ourselves Various - Klr(CD) 002 Japan 2001 Sell This Version
ASPHODEL LTD 2005, ASP2005 Iannis Xenakis Doing By Not Doing Iannis Xenakis - Persepolis + Remixes Edition I(2xCD) Asphodel, Asphodel ASPHODEL LTD 2005, ASP2005 US 2002 Sell This Version
CMJ CD-26-4 Various Mushin Various - Computer Music Journal Sound And Video Anthology Volume 26, 2002(CD) Computer Music Journal CMJ CD-26-4 US 2002 Sell This Version
Lichtung 001 Various Untitled Various - 2x5"(5" + CDr + Box, Ltd) Punk Kein Rock Lichtung 001 Germany 2004 Sell This Version
TA 048 Various Trig Various - The End Of The Fear Of God(CD, Album) Tochnit Aleph TA 048 Germany 2004 Sell This Version
Various Brownian Motor Various - Pangaea Noise (Comp) Syrphe Belgium 2008 Sell This Version
007 Various Lurk Various - Three Squares Swing On Fire(CD, Album) QTV Label 007 Brazil 2014 Sell This Version


Various Theta Various - Gothenburg 84 (Comp) Radium 226.05 Sweden 1984 Sell This Version
Various Royal Music #3 (Beyond The Veil Of Death At The Right-Time Hotel) For Richard Wagner And The Yanomamo Sniffers (as Z. Karkowski) Various - Dry Lungs III (Comp) Placebo Records US 1987 Sell This Version
Various I Fell In Love (as Karkowski) Various - This Infernal Love Of Life (Comp) Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth Scandinavia Sweden 1990 Sell This Version
RRR-064 Various Under The Spell Of Zombie Agressor Various - Testament(5x7" + Box, Comp) RRRecords RRR-064 US 1991 Sell This Version
STLTD 17 Various Wrench and 1 more… Various - Anckarström Live(CD, Ltd) Staalplaat STLTD 17 Netherlands 1993 Sell This Version
none Various Bardo Thötröl (The Great Liberation Through Hearing) Part 3 and 2 more… Various - Ciro Iamarco (8-5-1962 / 12-9-1993)(CDr, Comp, Ltd) Staalplaat none Netherlands 1995 Sell This Version
none Various In Fact The First Signs Of Alien Intelligence Might Well Come From This Planet Various - Resonance 2 Dissonance(Cass, Comp, Smplr) Unsound (3) none Japan 1996 Sell This Version
none Various Clear Stream Temple Various - Sonderangebot(CD, Comp) Staalplaat none Netherlands 1996 Sell This Version
Ash 3.4 Various Interpret Recordings By Disinformation Untitled Various Interpret Recordings By Disinformation - Antiphony(2xCD, Comp) Ash International Ash 3.4 UK 1997 Sell This Version
fb 25, fb25 Various techno-LOGICbunker301 Various - Falsch(CD-ROM, Mini, Comp + 35xFile, MP3, 128 + 2xFile, M) Falsch, Falsch fb 25, fb25 Austria 1999 Sell This Version
DNCD 20C Various Don't Touch Me I'm Electric (as Zbigniev Karkowski) Various - End ID(2xCD, Comp) Digital Narcis Corporation,. Ltd. DNCD 20C Japan 1999 Sell This Version
ISSUE 1 Various Le Dépeupleur Various - Or Some Computer Music Issue 1(CD, Album, Comp) OR ISSUE 1 UK 1999 Sell This Version
none Various Mutation (Excerpt) Various - Sneak Preview Volume Two(CDr, Promo, Comp) Staalplaat none Netherlands 1999 Sell This Version
FYCD 1017 Various Sofar Various - Nature Is Perverse(2xCD, Album, Comp) Fylkingen Records FYCD 1017 Sweden 2000 Sell This Version
ERS 12/07 Various Untitled Various - lockERS(12", Comp) ERS ERS 12/07 Netherlands 2000 Sell This Version
21227 CD Various New School Of Accyracy Various - Observatori 2000 Compilation(2xCD, Comp) Subterfuge Records 21227 CD Spain 2000 Sell This Version
CMJ CD-24-4 Various Ingot Various - Computer Music Journal Sound Anthology Volume 24, 2000(CD, Comp) Computer Music Journal CMJ CD-24-4 US 2000 Sell This Version
cdr01 Various Under The Spell Of Yamamba Girl Various - Erase Your Data(CDr, Comp, Ltd) Heioka cdr01 Switzerland 2000 Sell This Version

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May 5, 2016
Does anyone know where to find his scores or a list of the pieces he composed for accoustic musicians?


December 19, 2013
Zbigniew Karkowski (1958-2013)
"Many say they are sorry to hear of Zbigniew Karkowsky's death. I, for one, am not.

I still hear Zbigniew's infectious laugh, hear his voice, see the sparkle of mischief in his eyes. Ripping a poster of an exhibition that my piece BLIND DATE was in off the window of a packed Yamanote-sen in Tokyo, then showing it to a suited salaryman and encouraging him to take his children to look for it in the show. Both of us laughing hysterically when the train was gone.

Zbigniew always seemed utterly without fear. His final gesture, traveling for hours in a canoe into the Amazon jungle directly after flights from Europe lasting nearly 24 hours, to be treated by a Shipbo shaman is perfectly in keeping with everything else he did. All the way, no compromise. His final wish, if the treatment failed, was to be left in the jungle to be eaten. No ceremony, no grave. If it succeeded as he hoped, he said he would bring back stories of the adventure. Somehow, I still expect to hear them.

A Karkowsky concert often meant that we would see smoke rising from the burning speakers of the overdriven PA, fumes clearing the room. As much as he seemed to enjoy it when that happened, frankly I doubt that this was ever done for effect: he simply demanded that his music be heard with the power that he intended, that he himself heard. During a residency, one of several, at The Compound in San Francisco, director Naut Humon proudly remembered that Zbigniew played lower frequencies at volumes so high that they shattered the toilet bowl. Musicians who worked with him often spoke of him with unabashed admiration, said they looked forward to a chance to do it again.

Yes, Zbigniew was often cruel when drunk, plenty of those stories to go around. So far, I have yet to meet anyone who isn't. Alcohol is a seductive, motherless bitch to anyone who lets her have her way. She slams doors of friendship shut and, under her influence, Zbigniew slammed a few more than his share.

When Zbigniew moved to Tokyo, he was fortunate enough to meet Atsuko (I never did hear her last name), who stayed together with him for fifteen years, travelled to Greece to spend a last several days together, saw him off in Paris for the flight to Peru. If she and I never meet, here I send her a huge, heartfelt Thank You.

So today, and many more days like it, will be spent thinking of that laugh, that love of entertaining friends, that cavalier and uncompromising sense of daring. One of the first phrases in Japanese that Zbigniew said he learned was 'Omanko wa oishii' -- 'Cunt is delicious'. Here, too, he was absolutely right."

(John Duncan, 13.12.2013.)

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