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Surplus 1980

Illusion of Consistency [VINYL + CD + DOWNLOAD]

Surplus 1980: Illusion of Consistency [VINYL + CD + DOWNLOAD] (Surplus Industries)

Composed using an "exquisite corpse" method during the pandemic, where each player provided a partially complete track with instructions to expand their concept, enlisting an incredible set of musicians across the US & Europe, directed by Moe! Staiano, including Jesse Quattro, Fred Frith, Carla Kihlstedt, GW Sok, Amy X Neuburg, Darren Johnston, &c &c.

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Aaron Novik-alto clarinet, percussion

Moe! Staiano-art direction, drums, percussion, shaker, piano, handclaps, bass, guitar, vocals, toy piano, bass drum

Tom Weeks-baritone saxophone

Oli Heffernan-bass

Steve Lew-bass

George Cremaschi-contrabass

Fred Frith-guitar

Ajay Saggar-guitar, vocals

Melne Murphy-guitar, bass, effects, glockenspiel, synthesizer, vocals

Andy Kerr-guitar, organ

Bill Wolter-guitar, piano, synthesizer

Darren Johnston-trumpet

Amy X Neuburg-vocals

Carla Kihlstedt-vocals

Fliss Kitson-vocals

James Smith-vocals

Jesse Quattro-vocals

Matthias Bossi-vocals

Click an artist name above to see in-stock items for that artist.

Label: Surplus Industries
Catalog ID: 1980-2
Squidco Product Code: 34380

Format: LP + CD
Condition: New
Released: 2024
Country: USA
Packaging: LP + CD
Recorded in various locations from January, 2020, to April, 2022, by Bill Wolter and John Karr.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Illusion of Consistency" is Surplus 1980's "pandemic" album, recorded remotely between 2020-2022 at each of the various player's homes. The music was composed using the "exquisite corpse" method-each player was provided a partially-finished track, with instructions to add their own unique musical vision. Surplus 1980 called upon musician friends across Europe and the United States to collaborate, including Fred Frith, Ajay Saggar, George Cremaschi, Aaron Novik, and many more. Once the musical foundation was completed, Staiano added lyrics. What each song would sound like in the end was a mystery, and that was half the fun!

Outro Intro

(Music: Staiano)

Moe Staiano: drums, percussion, bass

Melne Murphy: guitar

Bill Wolter: synthesizer

They Don't Cry Wolf

(Words: Staiano/Music: Staiano, Murphy)

Moe: drums, marimba, guitar, treated snare, additional bass, vocals

Melne: guitar

Bill: guitar

Steve Lew: bass

Some Few Facts (And One False One) About Birds

(Words: Staiano/Music: Staiano, Murphy, Wolter, Heffernan)

Moe: drums, vocals

Melne, guitar, vocals

Bill: guitar

Oli Heffernan: bass

The Surplus Bird Choir:

Carla Kihlstedt, G.W. Sok, Fliss Kitson, Jim Smith, Melne Murphy (same person as Melne),

Amy X Neuburg, Ajay Saggar, Jesse Quattro, Matthias Bossi


(Words: Staiano/Music: Staiano, Murphy, Lew)

Moe: drums, percussion, treated piano, toy piano, bass drum, hand claps, guitar, vocals

Melne: guitar, effects, vocals

Steve Lew: bass

Aaron Novik: electro-acoustic percussion board (The Bat)

Illusion of Consistency

(Music: Staiano, Wolter, Murphy, Frith, Saggar)

Moe: drums, percussion

Melne: guitar, bass

Bill: guitar

Fred Frith: eerie guitar

Ajay Saggar: guitar loops

Darren Johnston: trumpet

This Song Is Not A Song

(Words: Staiano, Murphy/Music: Staiano, Wolter, Cremaschi)

Moe: drums, shakers, treated piano, guitar, vocals

Melne: bass, vocals

Bill: guitar

George Cremaschi: upright bass

Amy X Neuburg: additional "ha ha ha's"

Don't Speak Don't Breathe

(Words: Staiano/Music: Staiano, Murphy, Wolter)

Moe: drums, claps, vocals

Melne: bass, vocals

Bill: guitar

Not "Again"

(Music: Staiano, Murphy, Wolter, Kerr)

Moe: drums

Melne: bass

Bill: piano

Andy Kerr: guitar, organ

Aaron Novik: alto clarinet

Tom Weeks: baritone saxophone

(Words: Staiano, Murphy/Music: Staiano, Wolter, Murphy)

Moe: drums, percussion, guitar solo, bass, vocals

Melne: guitar, glockenspiel, Bebot synth, vocals

Bill: synthesizer

Amy X Neuburg: vocals

Jesse Quattro: vocals

This album was recorded from various times starting from January of 2020 through April 2022, and at various locations, mainly Oakland by Bill Wolter (with Moe, Melne, Bill, and Tom) at his home studio, good amounts at DVC College (with Moe, Melne and Bill) in Pleasant Hill by Bill Wolter, and additional recording assistance in San Francisco (with Moe and Melne) by John Karr at Ear Relevant. All other recordings were done either at home or in studio by the individual musicians themselves in Alameda (Melne), Oakland (Amy, Steve), Flowerpot Recordings in Santa Rosa (Fred) in California, Wood Hole (Carla and Matthias) in Massachusetts, Queens (Aaron), and Mountaindale (Jesse) in New York, Middlesbrough (Oli), and Kings Heath, Birmingham (Fliss and Jim) in England, Soundation Studio in Krommenie (Ajay) and Amsterdam (Andy and G.W.) in the Netherlands, Prague (George) in Czech Republic, and one location was forgotten which was either somewhere in Ohio or Brooklyn, New York (that would be Darren Johnston, he couldn't recall which, alas). Recording engineers: Bill Wolter and John Karr. Editing and pre-mixing by Bill Wolter. Further editing and mixing by John Karr with assistance by Moe Staiano. Mastered by Ian Beabout. Cover design and photographs by Moe Staiano. Additional important layout and design by Melne. It's important!

It should be noted that in the credits of instrumentation, you will see an instrument by the name of the "Bat." The Bat is an Electroacoustic Percussion Board with brass bars, threaded rods, loose bolts (for squeaky bird sound effects), nails, door stopper, etc. with a number of contact mics on the bottom of it. It was designed by instrument builder Tom Nunn, who has constructed many unique homemade, crafted instruments. Tom Nunn passed away back in June, 2022. The track 'Last' is dedicated to him."-Moe Staiano, Surplus 1980

Artist Biographies

" (born July 21, 1974) is an American composer, clarinetist and bandleader based in San Francisco. He is involved with the Bay Area Improv Scene and is a member of Edmund Welles The Bass Clarinet Quartet which was a 2004 recipient of a New Works Creation and Presentation grant from Chamber Music America. Novik has appeared in San Francisco and New York City with guitarist Fred Frith re-creating his 1980 avant-garde dance album, Gravity.

Novik's most recent album Secrets of Secrets was released on John Zorn's Tzadik Records in February 2012 as part of the Radical Jewish Culture Series. Secrets of Secrets was hailed by The East Bay Express as "enticing" and "ferociously executed" and by The Jewish Week as "richly textured and eclectic avant-klez" for its use of the 13th century sacred Kabbalah texts of Rabbi Eleazar of Worms. His second most recent album, Floating World Vol. 1 was released on the Porto Franco Record label in 2011. Albums The Samuel Suite, Simulacra and Kipple were released on the Evander label."

-Wikipedia (

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"Moe! is conductor and composer for the Moe! Staiano Ensemble, (formerly Moe!kestra!), a large-ensemble avant garde orchestra, which can feature over 30 musicians playing everything from violins, clarinets and cellos to drum kits, oscillators and electric guitars. Moe! Staiano Ensemble performances are high-energy, electrifying experiences that create unique and memorable soundscapes that intrigue and beguile.

Moe!'s innovative solo percussion shows feature prepared drum kit, found objects, audio looping and the inventive use of a "percussion guitar" woven in with performance art, which always gets the audience involved and eagerly expectant of what might happen next.

Moe! also fronts Surplus 1980, a post-punk band that continually evolves its journey of no-wave progressive and percussive musical exploration. Surplus 1980 features Moe!'s bracing guitar and wry wordplay and a wide palette of timbres from the multi-instrumentalist members of the group.

Over the years, Moe! has worked with a veritable who's-who of the Bay Area creative music scene, including Ron Anderson (the Molecules, RonRuins, PAK), Tom Nunn, Vacuum Tree Head, Z'ev, Amy X Neuburg, Ava Mendoza, Nurse With Wound, David Slusser, Karen Stackpole, Ches Smith, Michael Evans (God Is My Co-Pilot), Caroline Kraabel & John Edwards (Shock Exchange), Gino Robair, William Hooker, Tom Dimuzio and has performed with all these plus Henry Kaiser, Mark Growden's Electric Pinata, Amy Denio, Cheer-Accident and sfSoundGroup among others.

Solo Percussion

Moe! performs solo percussion shows, some are based around a modified drum set and looping, while others include "playing" a variety of found objects. His performances are always interesting and engaging, and often include the audience as a participant, as well as observer.

Moe! Staiano Ensemble (formerly Moe!kestra) is a large-ensemble avant garde orchestra, which can include over 30 musicians that play everything from traditional classical instruments and percussion to contemporary mainstays like electric guitars and drum kits.

Moe!'s ferocious conducting leads the ensembles through his own compositions--epic forays into sonic landscapes from pastoral and evocative to jagged and frenetic.

Moe! has created over ten works for his ensemble, including the dramatic and safety-glasses-encouraged "Piece No.1: Death of a Piano"--which climaxes with a frenzied crescendo and Moe! destroying a piano with a sledgehammer.


Moe! has collaborated in small ensembles with notable musicians such as Amy X Neuburg, Aram Shelton, Jordan Glenn, Thollem McDonas and more."

-Moe! Staiano Website (

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"Tom Weeks is a composer, improviser, and saxophonist from Oakland, CA. He has received a Bachelor's degree in Jazz Composition from Berklee College of Music, Boston, MA, and a Master's degree in Composition from Mills College, Oakland, CA. He has studied with Roscoe Mitchell, Fred Frith, Zeena Parkins, Pauline Oliveros, Chris Brown, W.A. Mathieu, Steve Adams, Richard Evans, and Phil Wilson, among others. His music is influenced by various African-American musical traditions, the historical avant-garde, and the heavy metal and hardcore traditions; utilizing improvisation, extended techniques, and traditional and experimental notational practices. He has worked with musicians such as Alvin Curran, Makoto Kawabata, Ricardo Descalzo, The MolOt Ensemble, Jack Wright, Arrington De Dionyso, Hans Koch, Walter Thompson, Vinny Golia, William Winant, G. Calvin Weston, members of the ROVA saxophone quartet, and Henry Kaiser, among many others. In addition to leading the bands Ero Guro and BEER, as well as performing with the ensemble TONED, his frequent collaborators include Camille Emaille, Nathan Corder, gabby fluke-mogul, and Kevin Murray."

-Tom Weeks Website (

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Oli Heffernan, aka Ivan The Tolerable, is a UK bassist born November 19, 1981. He lives and works in Middlesbrough, UK and has been recording and releasing since 1996. He is predominantly a guitar/bass/vocalist but also drums and keyboard. He is known for the groups British Lichen Society, Detective Instinct, Houseplants, Ivan The Tolerable & The Elastic Band, King Champion Sounds, Shrug, and Year Of Birds.

-Discogs (

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Steve Lew is a West Coaast bassist, known for his work with M-99, Slack, Surplus 1980, Surplus 1980 Collectiv Ensembl With G.W. Sok, and Vacuum Tree Head.

-Discogs (

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"George Cremaschi works with a variety of approaches and strategies in the areas overlapping music, sound art and noise. In thirty years as a composer and performer he has worked with a long and diverse list of distinguished musicians, dancers and choreographers, filmmakers, installation artists, and writers. Some of his current projects include the groups KRK (w/Matthew Ostrowski), Rohr Rohr (w/dieb13 and Gino Robair) and Lambs Gamble (w/Fritz Welch and Eric Boros). He is also the founder (w/Petr Vrba) and director of Pražský Improvizační Orchestr (PIO), a 15-member group working with conducted and free improvisation and graphic scores.

As an interpreter, he has performed works by many composers including Adamčiak, Andriessen, Braxton, Cage, Cardew, Feldman, Mingus, Oliveros, Penderecki, Tenney, Xenakis, etc and has appeared on over 40 recordings on Apestaartje, Beak Doctor, Black Saint, Emanem, Evander, Evolving Ear, Leo, Music & Arts, Nine Winds, Rastascan and other labels. Born in New York where he studied music and composition, he later lived for many years in California and currently lives in Prague, Czech Republic."

-George Cremaschi Website (

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"Though the point of reference for many remains the iconic band Henry Cow, which he co-founded in 1968 and which broke up more than 30 years ago, Fred Frith has never really stood still for an instant.

In bands such as Art Bears, Massacre, Skeleton Crew, Keep the Dog, Tense Serenity, the Fred Frith Guitar Quartet, Eye to Ear, and most recently Cosa Brava, he has always held true to his roots in rock and folk music, while exploring influences that range from the literary works of Eduardo Galeano to the art installations of Cornelia Parker.

The release of the seminal Guitar Solos in 1974 enabled him to simultaneously carve out a place for himself in the international improvised music scene, not only as an acclaimed solo performer but in the company of artists as diverse as Han Bennink, Chris Cutler, Jean-Pierre Drouet, Evelyn Glennie, Ikue Mori, Louis Sclavis, Stevie Wishart, Wu Fei, Camel Zekri, John Zorn, and scores of others.

He has also developed a personal compositional language in works written for Arditti Quartet, Asko Ensemble, Bang on a Can All-Stars, Ensemble Modern, Concerto Köln, and ROVA Sax Quartet, for example. Fred has been active as a composer for dance since the early 1980s, working with choreographers Bebe Miller, François Verret, and especially long-time collaborator and friend Amanda Miller, with whom he has created a compelling body of work over the last twenty years.

His film soundtracks (for award-winning films like Thomas Riedelsheimer's Rivers and Tides and Touch the Sound, Peter Mettler's Gambling, Gods, and LSD, and Deborah Kaufman and Alan Snitow's Thirst, to name a few) won him a lifetime achievement award from Prague's "Music on Film, Film on Music" Festival (MOFFOM) in 2007. The following year he received Italy's Demetrio Stratos Prize (previously given to Diamanda Galas and Meredith Monk) for his life's work in experimental music, and in 2010 was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Huddersfield in his home county of Yorkshire.

Fred currently teaches in the Music Department at Mills College in Oakland, California (renowned for over fifty years as the epicenter of the American experimental tradition), and in the Musik Akademie in Basel, Switzerland."

-Fred Frith Website (

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"Ajay Saggar has been active in music in some shape or form his whole life. He bought his first record in 1977 at the age of 12 (The Stranglers - 'o More Heroes' 7' single), attended his first show in 1978 (sneaked into The Stranglers at Bridlington Royal Spa on the "Black + White" tour) and got hooked by the John Peel show from 1976 onwards when he moved from Kenya to the United Kingdom (first lived in Glasgow, and then ended up finally in Manchester).

Whilst at university, he started to promote shows independently (putting on acts like Bogshed, bIG fLAME, The Membranes, The Nightingales, Walking Seeds, The Wedding Present et cetera). He played with Dandelion Adventure from 1987 (a cult northwest band who had fans ranging from My Bloody Valentine to The Pastels) who released some excellent records and did a John Peel session. He moved to The Netherlands on 30 December 1991, and since living there has been constantly active in music. His first band there was Donkey (who released several singles and albums, did a John Peel session, and toured extensively through Europe and America). The Bent Moustache followed which evolved into the current juggernaut that is King Champion Sounds. In the last 5 years, other wider based projects have arisen from Saggar's imagination including Deutsche Ashram, The Common Cold, Bhajan Bhoy (his first solo venture), and University Challenged. Saggar has worked as a sound engineer for several international acts including My Bloody Valentine, Dinosaur Jr., Mogwai, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Sleater-Kinney, et cetera amongst others, but is now a production manager at Paradiso (internationally renowned venue in Amsterdam) working there for the last 10 years."

-Pyschedelic Baby (

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"Melne Murphy is a West Coast guitarist known for the bands Surplus 1980, Surplus 1980 Collectiv Ensembl With G.W. Sok, Têtes Noires."

-Discogs (

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"Andy Kerr is a Canadian-born musician, originally from British Columbia and currently residing in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Kerr is best known as the former guitarist, frequent vocalist, and co-songwriter in the progressive punk rock/punk jazz band NoMeansNo. He has also recorded and performed as a solo artist, and his current group is Two Pin Din.

Kerr initially appeared on the Victoria, British Columbia punk rock scene in the late 1970s as the singer and guitarist in the punk rock groups Dioxyn and The Infamous Scientists. Founded in 1979, the latter group released two EPs prior to disbanding in 1982. The final lineup of this group included NoMeansNo drummer John Wright.

Kerr went on to join NoMeansNo as guitarist and vocalist in 1983 after founding members Wright and his brother Rob conducted the group as a sporadically active two-piece for four years. His unique sound and playing style added a strong complementary quality to the group. Running a Fender Bassman amplifier through a P.A. speaker, he attained a relentlessly jagged guitar tone quite suited to heavy dynamics of the Wright brothers' rhythm section. Rob Wright, the group's primary vocalist through much of its career, suffered from nodules on his vocal cords during much of the late 1980s, leaving Kerr temporarily responsible for the bulk of the vocal duties, notably on the Small Parts Isolated and Destroyed record. By the time of the Wrong album of 1989, Wright had undergone successful throat surgery and reclaimed the slight majority of the band's lead vocal parts. Kerr used pseudonyms and nameless references to himself in album liner notes. NoMeansNo enjoyed modest international success among critics and fans during this time. During a nine-year stint in the band, he played on four studio LPs, three EPs, a live record, and a collaborative LP with singer Jello Biafra, prior to emigrating to the Netherlands in 1992 and leaving the group.

Kerr's first project after leaving Canada found him collaborating with Canadian musician Scott Henderson (of Shovlhed and the Showbusiness Giants, among other groups) in an unorthodox manner - via airmail. The pair would individually experiment with home recordings and mail each other cassette tapes of their efforts for the other to elaborate upon. Calling themselves Hissanol, the experimental group released two full-length albums on the Alternative Tentacles label, with whom NoMeansNo had previously worked.

In 1997, Kerr released a solo record called Once Bitten, Twice Removed. This album, initially on cassette only prior to being re-released on CD-R in 2000, found him experimenting with a number of more traditional musical styles, including country, folk, pop, and rockabilly, as well as more familiar turns towards punk rock and pop punk.

Currently, Kerr is working with former Dog Faced Hermans drummer Wilf Plum in a two-piece guitar rock project called Two Pin Din. The group released their debut record, In Case of Fire Break Glass in 2008.

Kerr was, at different times, also briefly involved with NoMeansNo-related projects the Hanson Brothers and the Showbusiness Giants in the 1980s and early 1990s. In the latter group, he performed on bass guitar. Via his pseudonyms, he is credited as playing "some bass" on several NoMeansNo records as well."

-Wikipedia (

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"Bill Wolter is a composer, guitarist, audio engineer, and sound educator based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He composes music for film, games, and modern dance. His music is inspired by the sounds of jazz, classical new music, film music, progressive rock, and experimental music.

His main musical project is Inner Ear Brigade (IEB), an ensemble that plays a mix of progressive rock, avant-garde jazz, and classical new music. A restless collaborator who seeks the most diverse and challenging musical experiences, Bill performs and collaborates frequently with a wide range of musicians, bands, improvisers, and choreographers.

As a sound designer, Bill has worked on musical games such as Guitar Hero, Tap Tap Revenge, as well as several films from shorts to feature lengths.

Bill is also a passionate educator teaching music and audio at Diablo Valley College, Ex'pression College for Digital Arts, and The Art Institute of California, San Francisco."

-Bill Wolter Website (

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"Since settling in San Francisco in 1997, Canada-born trumpeter/improviser/composer/songwriter Darren Johnston has collaborated and recorded with an extremely diverse cross-section of artists. His interests rotate around composing instrumental music, writing songs, and performing all styles of jazz, experimental and purely improvised music, as well as traditional music of the Balkans, Greece, and Macedonia.

He has performed and/or recorded with luminaries such as ROVA Sax Quartet, Fred Frith, Myra Melford, Ben Goldberg, Matt Wilson, Mark Dresser, Marshall Allen, and many others.

As a composer, he has written for jazz and/or non-idiomatic improvising groups, big bands, string quartet, and even a multi-generational choir, with songs based on a collection of immigrant letters. He has written for dance companies such as Amy SeiwertÕs Imagery, Deborah Slater, Axis Dance, Robert MosesÕ Kin, Liss Fain, and others, as well as for dance films."

-Darren Johnston Website (

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"AMY X NEUBURG (Oakland, California) has been developing her own brand of irreverently genre-crossing works for voice, live electronics and chamber ensembles for over 25 years, known for her innovative use of live looping technology with electronic percussion, her 4-octave vocal range and her colorful - often humorous - lyrics. One of the earliest performers to work with live digital looping, Amy has presented her solo "avant-cabaret" songs at such diverse venues as the Other Minds and Bang on a Can new music festivals, the Berlin International Poetry Festival, the Wellington and Christchurch Jazz Festivals (New Zealand), the Warsaw Philharmonic Hall, electronic music festivals, colleges, rock clubs and concert halls throughout the U.S. and abroad.

As composer, commissions for voices and chamber ensembles - often with electronics - include Paul Dresher ensemble, San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, Robin Cox Ensemble, Present Music, Solstice vocal ensemble, Pacific Mozart Ensemble chorus, Sqwonk, and Del Sol String Quartet. Her acclaimed song cycle The Secret Language of Subways for voice, cello trio and electronics has played at Yerba Buena Center, the San Francisco Symphony After Hours, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic Left Coast Festival. She has also composed extensively for theater, visual media and modern dance.

A classically trained vocalist, Amy has been featured in contemporary operas and recordings including works by Robert Ashley, Culture Clash and Guillermo Galindo.

Amy received degrees in linguistics and voice from Oberlin College and Conservatory and an MFA in electronic music from Mills College. Her many grants and honors include Arts International, the Gerbode Foundation, Meet the Composer, The U.S. Embassy New Zealand, SF Friends of Chamber Music, and the Alpert/Ucross prize."

-Amy X Neuburg Website (

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"Carla Kihlstedt (born 1971) is an American composer, violinist, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist, originally from Lancaster, Pennsylvania and currently working from a home studio on Cape Cod.

She is a founding member of Tin Hat Trio (1997, renamed Tin Hat), Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, The Book of Knots, Causing a Tiger and Rabbit Rabbit. Other musical projects include 2 Foot Yard, Charming Hostess and Minamo (Carla Kihlstedt & Satoko Fujii). She is a recognized classical composer who has performed with the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), has worked occasionally on projects with Tom Waits and Fred Frith, and recorded numerous albums as a guest or session musician. Kihlstedt has studied at the Peabody Conservatory of Music, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and Oberlin Conservatory of Music.

In February 2012 she founded Rabbit Rabbit with her husband (and former Sleepytime Gorilla Museum drummer) Matthias Bossi. Rabbit Rabbit released their debut album, Rabbit Rabbit Radio - Vol. 1 in 2013. The band revolves around a song-a-month subscription website called Rabbit Rabbit Radio."

-Wikipedia (

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Fliss Kitson: Drummer / Vocals / Collaborator / Illustrator / MarketingWest Midlands, England, United Kingdom. Member of The Nightingales.

-Linked In (

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"Jesse Quattro's musical playground has ranged from singing with EyeHateGod, Carniceria, Secret Chiefs 3, to Bulgarian Voice Ensembles, Terry Riley, Freak-Out Jazz Improv and Old time Bluegrass Duets. She studied Music and Electronic Arts at Mills College in Oakland CA, and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY."

-Bay Improviser (

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"Matthias Bossi, voice, percussion, and keyboards (Dennis, MA), has played drums in Skeleton Key, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Fred Frith's Cosa Brava, and The Book of Knots, and made records with John Vanderslice, St. Vincent, Pretty Lights and The Tiger Lillies. His video game production company with bassist/engineer Jon Evans, Ridiculon, has written soundtracks for the video game "The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth" and soon to be released "The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth" "Super Meat Boy: 5th Anniversary" and "Super Meat Boy: Forever."

As an actor, Matthias has worked with the Shotgun Players, Pickle Family Circus, and action theatre pioneers Erika Shuch and Joe Goode. His current voiceover work can be heard on the sensational "Little Baby's Ice Cream" commercials, and also on a guided tour of Golden Gate Park produced by the SF-based audio walk company, Detour.

In February 2012, Matthias founded Rabbit Rabbit with his wife Carla Khilstedt. Rabbit Rabbit released their debut album, Rabbit Rabbit Radio - Vol. 1 in 2013. The band revolves around a song-a-month subscription website called Rabbit Rabbit Radio."

-YellowBarn (

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Track Listing:


1. Outro Intro 0:33

2. They Don't Cry Wolf 7:34

3. Some Few Facts (And One False One) About Birds 4:50

4. Last 7:55

5. Illusion Of Consistency 3:09


1. This Song Is Not A Song 7:41

2. Don't Speak Don't Breathe 3:32

3. The J. Allen BART Station Memorial Barbeque 5:02

4. Not "Again" 6:28


1. Outro Intro 0:33

2. They Don't Cry Wolf 7:34

3. Some Few Facts (And One False One) About Birds 4:50

4. Last 7:55

5. Illusion Of Consistency 3:09

6. ThisSong Is Not A Song 7:41

7. Don't Speak Don't Breathe 3:32

8. The J. Allen BART Station Memorial Barbeque 5:02

9. Not "Again" 6:28

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Skeleton Crew (Frith / Cora / Parkins)
Free Dirt (Live) [2 CDs]
One of the most intense and unusual of the 80s Downtown NY groups merging rock and improvisation with strong attitudes and incredible musical concepts, these live recordings, including songs never before released, are taken from American and European concerts by the trio of guitarist Fred Frith, cellist Tom Cora, and either electric harpist Zeena Parkins or reedist Dave Newhouse.
Various Artists
State of the Union 2.001 [3 CD BOX SET]
(Electronic Music Foundation)
Originally released in 2001, Elliott Sharp's production of this 3-CD set collects 171 1-minute pieces from international artists over a vast field of musical approaches, with contributors including Christian Marclay, Eric Mingus, Fred Frith, Harry Smith, Henry Kaiser, Ikue Mori, Jack Womack, Jad Fair, Joey Baron, Marc Ribot, Merzbow, Phill Niblock, Zeena Parkins, &c. &c.
Novik, Aaron
(Astral Spirits)
During the lockdown of 2020 clarinetist and composer Aaron Novik recorded the sounds of clarinet, bass clarinet and contrabass clarinet, using those samples to create this 10-part composition, a work of active counterpoint and minimalist structures with a playful sense of humor, the character of the samples bringing forth both acoustic and electronic evocations.
Vergara, Benjamin / Fred Frith
Fanfarrisimo [VINYL]
(Tour de Bras)
Recording in Chile at the University Austral in 2018, trumpeter Benjamin Vergara and guitarist Fred Frith take us on two extended journeys through free electroacoustic improvisation, Frith's providing diverse and intense sonic environments over which Vergara's virtuosic and intuitive approach to the trumpet soars; impressive, creative, cathartic.
Toned (Corder / Suarez / Weeks)
The Private Sector
Schizophrenically skronky improv of ea-cutups and semi-maniacal segments that resolve to near-stillness from the West Coast TONED trio of Nathan Corder on electronics, Leo Suarez on drums, and Tom Weeks on sax, using a nonlinear and nonhierarchical organizational process and multiple layers of compositional feedback loops to create unpredictably bizarre and overtly fun music.
Frith, Fred
All Is Always Now (Live at the Stone) [3 CDs]
Guitarist Fred Frith performed 80 concerts at NY's The Stone between 2006-2016, in diverse configurations of duos, trios, quartets and large ensembles with some of the planet's finest improvisers, of which 23 recordings, titled from NY Times headlines of each concert's day, are presented in this essential 3-CD package, which includes a 24 page booklet detailing the collection.
Leandre, Joelle
A Woman's Work [8 CD BOX SET]
(Not Two)
A thorough overview of bassist and vocalist Joelle Leandre's recent work in a boxed set of 8 CDs and a 16 page booklet of essays, photos and credits, each CD bringing a unique grouping from Les Diaboliques to duos with Mat Maneri, Fred Frith, Lauren Newton, & Jean-Luc Cappozzo, plus one solo disc and a quartet with Zlatko Kaucic, Evan Parker and Augusti Fernandez; magnificent.
Spectral (Dave Rempis / Darren Johnston / Larry Ochs)
Empty Castles
Spectral, since 2012 the working horn trio of Dave Rempis on alto & baritone sax, Darren Johnston on trumpet, and Larry Ochs on sopranino & tenor sax, split their time between San Francisco and Chicago, in their 3rd album of spontaneous, complex free improv, here using the setting of Bunker A-168 in Mare Island Shoreline Heritage Preserve, CA, to influence their performance.
Frith, Fred / Hardy Fox
A Day Hanging Dead Between Heaven And Earth
Fred Frith's solo career started on the West Coast Ralph Records label, home of The Residents; Frith met Residents front man Hardy Fox in passing in 1991, making recordings on a Pacific beach using Fox's Walkman, which they brought to a multi-track studio to record the basis for an ultimately unreleased album, now revived decades later as Fox rediscovered this fascinating material.
Lambs Gamble
Farewell Body Bags [VINYL]
Bizarre, disruptive, aberrant sound from twisted experts in the field Lambs Gamble, comprised of George Cremaschi on bass & electronics, Fritz Welch on drums, percussion and voice, and Eric Boros (Vialka) on electronics and voice, recording in Switzerland for a fantastic album of intelligent abnormality.
Frith, Fred / Darren Johnston
Everybody's Somebody's Nobody
(Clean Feed)
Bay Area trumpeter Darren Johnston meets improvising guitar legend Fred Frith for an incredibly well-paced series of duos, remarkable improv that uses space, skill, extended techniques and unexpected approaches to both instruments in vivid and beautiful discourse.
Frith, Fred / Evan Parker
Hello, I Must Be Going
(Les Disques Victo)
Two masters who rarely play together--guitarist Fred Frith and saxophonist Evan Parker--performing together as a duo at the 30th Musique Actuelle Festival in Victoriaville, Canada for an amazing exchange of ideas and intensely subtle dialog.
Anker, Lotte / Fred Frith
Edge Of The Light
An intimate dialog between frequent collaborators, UK guitarist Fred Frith and Copenhagen saxophonist Lotte Anker, both players listening carefully as they interact in a fragile dialog of profound technique and inventive approach, using texture and nuance to create unusual and captivating interchanges that demonstrate how compatible these two very different instruments can be.
Mickens, Sam
Kayfabe: Lamb of G.O.D.
(Sam Mickens)
Vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Sam Mickens (The Dead Science) leading an excellent band including drummer Mike Pride, bassist Shahzad Ismaily, vocalists Carla Bozulich, Jesse Quattro, &c, through 15 persuasive rock songs recorded in NYC.
Frith, Fred / Danielle Palardy Roger
Pas de deux nouveau
(Ambiances Magnetiques)
Live recordings from this great pair of improvisors, selected from their performances at Festival des musiques de creation in Saguenay and at La Sala Rossa in Montreal.
Art Bears
Hopes and Fears
(Recommended Records)
Braxton, Anthony / Frith, Fred
Duo (Victoriaville) 2005
(Les Disques Victo)
Skeleton Crew
Learn to Talk and Country of Blinds [2 CDs]
(Recommended Records)
Art Bears
The World As it Is Today
(Recommended Records)
Frith, Fred
Stone, Brick, Glass, Wood, Wire (Graphic Scores 1986-96)(2CDs)
RESTOCKED: Fred Frith's 1999 box set, presenting a large, flexible ensemble project using marked photographs and rules as scores while Frith directs and conducts as well as performing; permanent members are Ikue Mori and Zeena Parkins, otherwise the balance of the 44 strong ensemble changes; recordings here are taken from 5 concerts, including the first in 1992 at AngelicA.

The Squid's Ear Magazine

The Squid's Ear Magazine

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