Ultraschall, jointly presented by Deutschlandradio Kultur and Kulturradio vom RBB (Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg), and this year officially renamed Ultraschall Berlin, has been a fixture of the city's concert life since 1999. Festival directors Rainer Pöllmann (Deutschlandradio Kultur) and Andreas Göbel (replacing Margarete Zander for Kulturradio vom RBB) chose to emphasise the two major broadcasters' partnership this year with what they called a ‘duo idea’ running through the festival's programme. Illustrating this theme, orchestral concerts (a pair) opened and closed the festival, the project New Forum Jeune Création paired each of three ensembles with two young composers, and performing duos included GranSchumacher Piano Duo, Claudia Barainsky and Axel Bauni in a concert for voice and piano, and a concert of string duos by members of Kammerensemble Neue Musik Berlin (who were however not appearing as representatives of this ensemble) with the featured composer/zither player Leopold Hurt, to name but a few. Additionally, a so-called epilogue after the festival's official ending was paired with something that one might have called a prologue, seemingly tacked on as an afterthought: an evening of Klangkunst, electro-acoustic music and performance entitled ‘Art's Birthday’ presented works by Hanna Hartman, Jana Winderen and Nicolas Bernier at the hub of Berlin's club culture, Berghain. Though internationally known in the techno scene for drugs, dancing and dark rooms, Berghain has also long been used as a venue for contemporary and experimental music concerts. The otherwise conservative choices of venue (Radialsystem V, Haus des Rundfunks, and HAU (Hebbel am Ufer) Theatres) and programme – Ultraschall sees itself more as a repertoire-establishing festival, with an emphasis not on premieres but on second and third performances alongside ‘masterpieces’ of contemporary and modern music – made this first concert appear a half-hearted jumping on the ‘new contexts’ bandwagon. And, alongside the repeated, excited announcements of the festival now having its own website (yes in 2014!), there was something of the sense of embarrassment one feels as a teenager bumping into one's parents at a night club.