Virtuoso drummer, laptopist and composer Michael Wertmüller, percussionist in the Peter Brötzmann trio, has played with Bill Laswell, Holger Czukay and John Cale to name just a few. Known for his metal and free jazz-fusion band Abbot! in the 90s, Wertmuller has since played with classical ensembles and appeared in the line-up of the Laptop Orchestra. He released a solo album Die Zeit, Eine Gebrauchsanweisung
, on German jazz/improv imprint GROB in 2003.
Wertmüller (1968) was born in Thun, Switzerland. He attended a jazz school and the conservatorium in Bern before moving to Amsterdam’s conservatorium in the early 90s. Between 1995 and 2001 he studied with renowned experimental composer Deter Schnebel.
As Alboth!’s drummer for almost ten years, Wertmüller appeared on dozens of recordings with the band between 1990 and 2000, including five full-length albums. In the same period, Wertmüller was one half of the Werther / Wittwer project with Zürich-based ‘metal’ improv guitarist, Stephan Wittwer. They released one album, I
, on the same label – GROB – that would later put out Wertmüller’s solo debut.
In collaboration with Peter Brötzmann, Wertmüller appears on two other jazz albums, 2002’s Nuthung
, and 2006’s Full Blast
on Jazzerkstatt. Wertmüller plays with Brötzmann’s son, Casper, in another group called Massaker.
Wertmüller lives in Berlin, where he is a guest lecturer at Humboldt University and teaches Instant Composing/Improvisation at the University of Arts. As a drummer he has toured the world and performed with musicians including Bill Laswell, Toshinori Kondo, Holger Czukay and John Cale. His compositions have been performed at Donaueschingen, MaerzMusik, Ultraschall and the London Jazz Festival.
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