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Secret Chiefs 3 / John Zorn

The Book Beri'ah Vol 10-Malkhut

Secret Chiefs 3 / John Zorn: The Book Beri'ah Vol 10-Malkhut (Tzadik)

The long-running West Coast-based Secret Chiefs project, here in it's third iteration as an octet, takes on John Zorn's "Book Beri'ah" in its 10th volume, presenting 12 of the final Masada compositions in energetically exciting and virtuosically superb renderings, genre-mashing rock, jazz, fusion, ethnic and avant forms, a superbly compelling and joyful album.

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product information:

UPC: 702397511021

Label: Tzadik
Catalog ID: CD-TZA-5110
Squidco Product Code: 28105

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard Sleeve Sealed
Recorded at EastSide Sound, in New York City, New York, in July, 2015, by Marc Urselli.

Recorded at the Bunker Studio in Los Angeles, California, in May, 2017, by Jason Schimmel.

Recorded at Forking Paths Studio, in 2016 and 2017 by Trey Spruance.


Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz-bass, Oud, Gimbri

Eyvind Kang-viola, violin

Jason Schimmel-guitars, electric, acoustic 12 string electric, lapsteel, sitar

Ches Smith-congas, vibes, dumbek, shakers, drums

Trey Spruance-electric guitar, baritone guitar, sitar guitar, analog synth pads, extra percussion theater organ, clavinet, kinnor, nevel, glockenspiel, sound fx

Kenny Grohowski-drums, congas

Matt Lebofsky-Hammond organ, Farfisa Organ, piano, electric piano, moog

Ryan Parrish-Kaval

John Zorn-composer

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Artist Biographies:

"Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz (born 1975 in Brooklyn, NY) is an American bassist and oud player who has recorded and performed extensively with Cyro Baptista's Banquet of the Spirits, Daniel Zamir's Satlah, Rashanim, and Pharaoh's Daughter, and John Zorn. Blumenkranz studied at the Manhattan School of Music, the Rimon School of Music in Israel, and holds a B.A. in Performance from Berklee College of Music in Boston. In 2012 he released the first album under his leadership Abraxas: Book of Angels Volume 19 featuring compositions by John Zorn."

-Wikipedia (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Eyvindur (Eyvind) Kang (born 23 June 1971 in Corvallis, Oregon, United States) is a composer and violist. He was raised in Canada and the United States, and has since lived and worked in countries ranging from Italy to Iceland.

A recurring theme in his solo work is the "NADE", the meaning of which Kang is not willing to disclose. Referring titles include "Theme from the first NADE", "5th NADE/Invisible Man", "Theme from the sixth NADE" (all three from the debut album 7 NADEs, 1996); "Jewel of the NADE", "Mystic NADE" (both from Theater of Mineral NADEs, 1998) and "Harbour of the NADE" (Virginal Co-ordinates, 2003). His preferred instrument is the viola.

In 2014 Kang visited Vossajazz in western Norway, for a gig with Bill Frisell's trio Beautiful Dreamers, including with drummer Rudy Royston, for the opening concert. During the concert Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen joined in for a tune."

-Wikipedia (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Jason Schimmel is a composer & guitarist from Los Angeles.

With a command of countless genres and a vast list of credits, composer/guitarist Jason Schimmel is a musical polymath whose talents know no bounds. His seamlessly eclectic style-previously on display in boundary-defying bands Estradasphere and Secret Chiefs 3 - calls on anything from surf rock to big-band jazz to Balkan folk to heavy metal.

Currently heading the jazz-fusion quintet Atomic Ape, Schimmel has worked with a dizzying array of underground icons and virtuosos, including John Zorn, Trey Spruance, Amanda Palmer, J.G. Thirlwell, Neil Hamburger, Eyvind Kang, Wayne Horvitz, Jason Webley, Carla Kihlstedt, Matt Chamberlain, Tim Young, Michael White, and many more. His original compositions have been featured on NBC, ABC, Comedy Central, the Food Network, and Fox, and he has performed at major domestic and foreign festivals such as the North Sea Jazz Festival, the Rothbury Festival, the 10,000 Lakes Festival, the Masada Marathon at Lincoln Center, and the Angel City Jazz Festival.

A freelance composer with film-score and production-music credits, Schimmel also works with world-renowned production houses Elias Arts and Hans Zimmer's Bleeding Fingers. His skills stretch beyond composition as well-with expert engineering abilities, he owns and operates The Bunker, a full-service recording studio in Los Angeles."

-Jason Schimmel Website (

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"Born in San Diego, CA and raised in Sacramento, Ches Smith came up in a scene of punks and metal musicians who were listening to and experimenting with jazz and free improvisation. He studied philosophy at the University of Oregon before relocating to the San Francisco Bay area in 1995. After a few years of playing with obscure bands and intensive study with drummer / educator Peter Magadini, he enrolled in the graduate program at Mills College in Oakland at the suggestion of percussionist William Winant. There he studied percussion, improvisation, and composition with Winant, Fred Frith, Pauline Oliveros and Alvin Curran. One of Winant's first "assignments" for Ches was to sub in his touring gig at the time, Mr. Bungle (here he met bassist / composer Trevor Dunn who would later hire him for the second incarnation of his Trio-Convulsant). During his time at Mills, Ches co-founded two bands: Theory of Ruin (with Fudgetunnel / Nailbomb frontman Alex Newport), and Good for Cows (w/ Nels Cline Singers' Devin Hoff). He currently performs and records with Xiu Xiu, and Secret Chiefs 3. He has also performed with Ben Goldberg, Annie Gosfield, Wadada Leo Smith, John Tchicai, Fred Frith, and Trevor Dunn. In addition to Ceramic Dog, he also leads his two of his own projects, Congs for Brums and These Arches. He currently spends his time between Los Angeles, San Francisco and Brooklyn."

-Ches Smith Website (

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"Preston Lea "Trey" Spruance III (born August 14, 1969) is an American composer, producer, and musician who co-founded the experimental rock band Mr. Bungle. He is also leader of the multi-genre outfit Secret Chiefs 3. Originally a guitarist and trumpeter, Spruance later began playing vintage electronic organs, saz, santur, electric sitar, tar, pipa, and various other string and percussion instruments.

Spruance's playing and composition style is influenced by many diverse genres of music, such as surf rock, Anatolian folk, death metal, film music, Afghan rebab music, ska, funk, space rock, jazz and Japanoise. Musique concrète and foley work also play a large role in his recordings.

Spruance was a founding member of Mr. Bungle, along with Mike Patton and Trevor Dunn. He has focused on his band Secret Chiefs 3 for the last 15 years (though it began in 1996), and its seven "satellite" groups first introduced on the 2004 album Book of Horizons. Though once secular, Spruance began exploring religious and philosophical themes in Mr. Bungle and Secret Chiefs 3 in the mid-1990s, after joining the Eastern Orthodox Church. Since 2007 Spruance has performed with Secret Chiefs 3 in over 50 countries.

In 2013 he arranged his music for the 61-piece Traditional Russian Orchestra of Krasnoyarsk and performed with them in Kansk, Siberia, alongside other members of Secret Chiefs 3. He has performed regularly with John Zorn and has arranged two releases of works from Zorn's Masada Songbooks for Secret Chiefs 3: "Xaphan" in 2007, and "Beriah". He contributed guitar and tubular bells to two albums by the drone metal band Asva, with whom he toured the US and Europe. He also recorded with Patton and Faith No More on their 1995 album King for a Day... Fool for a Lifetime.

Spruance has also composed scores for two animated films by his friend Tawd B. Dorenfeld, The Anna Cabrini Chronicles and Aylaqruh:hurqalyA.

Besides his own bands, Spruance has also worked as a producer for others. In 2001, he produced Chicago rock band Tub ring's first full-length album, Drake Equation. In 2004, he produced the Death After Life for Oakland, CA death metal group Impaled and contributed guitar solos for the songs Resurrectionists, and Medical Waste. Other production duties have included I'll Have What's She's Having (2004) by The Tuna Helpers and Faxed Head's Chiropractic (2001).

Spruance is the founder of Mimicry Recordings, which has released albums from a variety of different bands, including Cleric, Fat32, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Brazzaville, Matt Chamberlain, Dengue Fever, and ASVA, amongst others."

-Wikipedia (

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"Brought up in a musical household in Miami, 29-year-old drummer, Kenny Grohowski has been performing since the age of 14. His rich musical background is demonstrated through the growing list of his collaborators and guest artists, including Vernon Reid, Corey Unger (of Blood Has Been Shed), Emeline Michel, Peter Cincotti, Jorge Sylvester, Bobby Sanabria, Bill T. Jones, Rory Stuart, Cassandra Wilson, Richie Ray & Bobby Cruz, Giovanni Hidalgo, John Benitez, Francis Mbappe, Domingo Quinones, and Bobby Valentin.

Grohowski has been a member of bassist Lonnie Plaxico's band since 2003, and a member of Andy Milne's Dapp Theory since 2006, having come back from a successful US/Canada tour with Dapp Theory, with Highlight shows in Vancouver opening for Jazz and Bass legend, Stanley Clarke, and performed in the 2007 Latin Grammy Awards Live from Madison Square Garden with the award winning group RBD. He has appeared on several recordings, including Plaxico's hit "So Alive" [Sony, Japan]. As of 2009, Grohowski has become a new member of acclaimed Haitian singer/cultural figure Emeline Michel's Accoustic Quintet, and has also performed at the Museum of Modern Art with the Ze Luis Quartet as part of their Live Art performances. Grohowski has also toured across the United States, South America, and Europe, as well as in Australia and China with New Classical Composer Daniel Bernard Roumain (a.k.a. DBR). Kenny has also performed regularly with acclaimed bassist Felix Pastorius and his group since 2010, performing regularly at such New York City venues as Zinc Bar and The 55 Bar. Recently, Grohowski has written and recorded for Grammy Award winning Producer and Arranger Victor "Papo" Ortiz on the album "Eres Santo".

When not working with his various affiliated ensembles, Grohowski enjoys a steady and fast paced Free lancing schedule, working with many of New York City's top Jazz, Rock, and Brazilian artists, as well as a multitude of others, and has recorded on over 40 albums. [...]"

-Kenny Grohowski Website (

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Matt Lebofsky: "Currently I play bass in the brand new loud/dark/heavy band Monstrika, and keyboards/etc. in Secret Chiefs 3. I also play everything in various studio projects, with material released under the name Bodies Floating Ashore (or my actual name). I juggle several other curious projects, including playing stunt parts for other bands' recordings, composing video scores, performing in cover bands for fun (and money), and all sorts of random music production. Until their recent indefinite hiatuses I played bass in miRthkon, and keyboards in MoeTar. I was co-leader or side-man in a zillion other bands over the years.

Current Projects:
Monstrika | Secret Chiefs 3 | Bodies Floating Ashore | miRthkon | MoeTar | Fuzzy Cousins | Fuxedos | Immersion Composition Society

Older/Other Projects:
Species Being | Faun Fables | Midline Errors | Research & Development | Three Piece Combo | Dropsy | Mumble & Peg | JOB

-Matt Lebofsky Website (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

Ryan Parrish is a Los Angeles, CA-based musician, a member of Atomic Ape, The Droogs of Eidetia, DUBSAK, Duk, The Jazz Cavalry, Late Monkey/Early Man, Misery Love Company, Osmodiar, The Peculiar Pretzelmen, Secret Chiefs 3, The Mark Sexton Band, Show Brazil!, Sly Buford, Stupid Man Suit, Tubaluba.

-Rate Your Music (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"John Zorn (born September 2, 1953) is an American composer, arranger, producer, saxophonist, and multi-instrumentalist with hundreds of album credits as performer, composer, and producer across a variety of genres including jazz, rock, hardcore, classical, surf, metal, klezmer, soundtrack, ambient, and improvised music. He incorporates diverse styles in his compositions which he identifies as avant-garde or experimental. Zorn was described by Down Beat as "one of our most important composers".

Zorn established himself within the New York City downtown music movement in the mid-1970s performing with musicians across the sonic spectrum and developing experimental methods of composing new music. After releasing albums on several independent US and European labels, Zorn signed with Elektra Nonesuch and received wide acclaim with the release of The Big Gundown, an album reworking the compositions of Ennio Morricone. He attracted further attention worldwide with the release of Spillane in 1987, and Naked City in 1989. After spending almost a decade travelling between Japan and the US he made New York his permanent base and established his own record label, Tzadik, in the mid-1990s.

Tzadik enabled Zorn to maintain independence from the mainstream music industry and ensured the continued availability of his growing catalog of recordings, allowing him to prolifically record and release new material, issuing several new albums each year, as well as promoting the work of many other musicians. Zorn has led the hardcore bands Naked City and Painkiller, the klezmer/free jazz-influenced quartet Masada, composed over 600 pieces as part of the Masada Songbooks that have been performed by an array of groups, composed concert music for classical ensembles and orchestras, and produced music for opera, sound installations, film and documentary. Zorn has undertaken many tours of Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, often performing at festivals with many other musicians and ensembles that perform his diverse output.

Zorn's compositions cross many genres and he has stated "All the various styles are organically connected to one another. I'm an additive person-the entire storehouse of my knowledge informs everything I do. People are so obsessed with the surface that they can't see the connections, but they are there." For Zorn "Composing is more than just imagining music-it's knowing how to communicate it to musicians. And you don't give an improviser music that's completely written out, or ask a classical musician to improvise. I'm interested in speaking to musicians in their own languages, on their own terms, and in bringing out the best in what they do. To challenge them and excite them." "

-Wikipedia (

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track listing:

1. Sitra Achra 3:28

2. Chitzonuyut 3:45

3. Shadim 4:52

4. Netzokim 4:18

5. Yekinah 4:34

6. Netzach 2:11

7. Sapar 3:57

8. Mishkan 3:51

9. Makif 1:36

10. Atzmut 3:36

11. Ayin 3:30

12. Shemot 3:33
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Around since the mid-1990s, Secret Chiefs 3 is one of the most popular instrumental ensembles working today, with a devoted cult following and a constantly changing lineup of stellar musicians. Featuring one of the best groupings they have ever had, in Malkhut they turn their hand to twelve tunes from Zorn's Book Beri'ah. Years in the making, SC3 mastermind Trey Spruance considers this to be one of his most ambitious and involved CDs to date. Even better than their Masada Book of Angels release Xaphan, Malkhut is filled with spiritual depth, meticulous detail and a amazing creativity. This is music that is essential to everyone interested in the Masada legacy'instrumental music from the outer realms!"-Tzadik

"Trey Spruance's avant garde project Secret Chiefs 3 will release a new record as part of a 11-album set. The band's name was inspired by esoteric and mystical guiding authorities known as Secretr Chiefs. The choice reflects Spruance's vivid interest in such philosophies, as reported by mxdwn. Moreover, Westword revealed that the project is merely a general name that encompasses many other satellite bands, each mirroring one of Spruance's different interests. Those are Electromagnetic Azoth, UR, Ishraqiyun, Traditionalists, Holy Vehm, FORMS, and NT Fan.

The new record, titled MALKHUT, will be released as a contribution to John Zorn's Masada Book Series. The final release will consists of a 11-album box set titled Masada Book III: Beri'ah.

Masada is John Zorn's creature. Zorn is a renown composer and saxophone player whose musical career and style are hard to catalogue. With his multiple projects he crossed over various genres, from avant garde to punk. Masada, however, was born in 1993 and consists of a profound exploration of Jewish music and heritage through a long series of composition, over two hundreds to be exact.

The project is also a music collective which has included artists such as the Masada Quartet, Bar Kokhba, Electric Masada, the Masada String Trio and cutting edge interpretations by musicians as varied as Joe Lovano, Secret Chiefs 3, Pat Metheny, Cyro Baptista, Craig Taborn, Garth Knox etc.

In its first decade of existence, Masada focused on Masada Book One, Masada Book Two and The Book of Angels followed in 2004 and 2014 saw the beginning of the third decade of the Masada dynasty with a final collection of Masada compositions with Book Three, The Book B'riah."-Luca Di Fabio,

Get additional information at Mxdwn
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