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Grosse Abfahrt: Vanity (Emanem)

Tom Djll put this electro-acoustic improvising group together when Matthieu Werchowski & David Chiesa were visiting the SF area, with performances from duos to octet.
 

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product information:


UPC: 5030243500727

Label: Emanem
Catalog ID: 5007
Squidco Product Code: 12429

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2009
Country: Great Britain
Packaging: Cardstock Gatefold Sleeve 3 panels
Digital concert recordings at 21 Grand Gallery, Oakland, CA on Apil 23, 2008 by Philip Perkins of See a Dog, Hear a Dog Studios.


Personnel:

Tom Djll-trumpet, preparations, electronics

Matt Ingalls-clarinet, bass clarinet

John Shiurba-electric guitar

Matthieu Werchowski-violin, viola

Theresa Wong-cello

David Chiesa-doublebass

Tim Perkis-electronics

Gino Robair-energised surfaces & voltage made audible

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Artist Biographies:

"Tom Djll studied electronic music with Stephen Scott at the Colorado College, working with the EMS Synthi 100 system at Packard Hall. In 1978 and 79 Djll studied at the Creative Music Studio in Woodstock, NY, with Roscoe Mitchell, Anthony Braxton, Wadada Leo Smith, George Lewis, the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Karl Berger and many other giants of new music. He spent the years 1981-1993 working with the Serge Modular Music System before enrolling in Mills College Contemporary Music Program, where he extended his quest to develop and integrate an idiosyncratic trumpet language into an electronic sound environment, while also pursuing advanced improvisation studies, formally, with Pauline Oliveros, and, informally, with Jack Wright. While at Mills, Djll concentrated on microtonal composition, split-tone trumpet technique, and computer music. He also worked extensively with Chris Brown, resulting in contributions to Brown's recordings LAVA (Tzadik) and DUETS (Artifact).

Further refinement of trumpet languages and free improvisation with his band GROSSE ABFAHRT was undertaken from 1999 - 2010, published on the Emanem, Creative Sources, and Setola di Maiale labels. Beginning in 2012, Djll gradually re-introduced electronics into his sound-set. The results are heard in projects like hackMIDI (extreme electro-mechanical piano music), piano + analog electronics in TENDER BUTTONS (with Tania Chen and Gino Robair), delicate environments in EUPHOTIC (with Cheryl Leonard and Bryan Day), austere acoustic spaces with KOKUO (Kanoko Nishi-Smith, John McCowen, Jacob Felix Heule, and Kyle Bruckmann) and ongoing sessions and performances within the lively and ever-evolving Bay Area scene, including: Tim Perkis, Amanda Chaudhary, Jordan Glenn, Clarke Robinson, Suki O'Kane, Matt Ingalls, Tom Nunn, bran(...)pos, and Karen Stackpole.

Obligatory list of famous musicians Djll has played and/or recorded with:

Roscoe Mitchell, David Toop, Fred Frith, William Winant, Rova Saxophone Quartet, Pauline Oliveros, Ava Mendoza, John Butcher, Vladimir Tarasov, Le Quan Ninh, Tania Chen, Wobbly, Frank Gratkowski, Miya Masaoka, nmperign, Tatsuya Nakatani, Vijay Iyer, and Zeena Parkins."

-Tom Djll Website (http://tomdjll.com/)
9/20/2021

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

"John Shiurba is a composer and guitarist whose musical pursuits include improvisation, art-rock, modern composition and noise. Shiurba has recorded and toured the U.S. and Europe as a member of the bands Eskimo, The Molecules and Spezza Rotto, as a member of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, Anthony Braxton's ensemble and the SFSound Group, and as an improvisor.

Shiurba has conducted the premieres of his compositions at ODC in 2005 ("Moon Cycle" for SFSound) at New Langton Arts in 2002 ("Triplicate") and at SFAlt in 2002 ("5x5 1.4" for SFSound). Shiurba was invited to play at the Seattle Improvised Music Festival in 1998, at the High Zero Festival in Baltimore in 1999, at the SFAlt Festival in 2004 and at the Olympia Experimental Music Festival in 2002 and 2004, and at the Push International Performing Arts Festival in Vancouver in 2007.

As a guitarist Shiurba has developed a unique and personalized approach to the guitar. Through the use of extended techniques and unusual preparations, he expands the traditional sound range of the instrument, producing stunning, often unrecognizable results. Cadence Magazine calls Shiurba a 'wildly creative guitarist... anti-jazz, anti-everything else, yet utterly compelling.'"

-John Shiurba Website (http://www.shiurba.com/bio.html)
9/20/2021

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"Theresa Wong is a composer, cellist and vocalist active at the intersection of music, experimentation, improvisation and the synergy of multiple disciplines. Bridging sound, movement, theater and visual art, her primary interest lies in finding the potential for transformation for both the artist and receiver alike.

Her works include The Unlearning (Tzadik), 21 songs for violin, cello and 2 voices inspired by Goya's Disasters of War etchings, O Sleep, an improvised opera for an 8 piece ensemble exploring the conundrum of sleep and dream life and Venice Is A Fish, a collection of solo songs. Her commissioned works include pieces for Splinter Reeds, Vajra Voices, pianist Sarah Cahill and Del Sol string quartet. At the heart of her work is a desire to expand the sonic possibilities of materials and to explore their potential in many modes of performance.

She collaborates with many singular artists, including Fred Frith, Ellen Fullman, Luciano Chessa, Annie Lewandowski, Chris Brown, Frantz Loriot, John McCowen, Søren Kjærgaard, Carla Kihlstedt, conceptual artist Jonathon Keats and filmmaker Daria Martin. In 2018, Wong founded fo'c'sle, a record label dedicated to adventurous music from the Bay Area and beyond, featuring inaugural releases by Ellen Fullman with David Gamper and Stuart Dempster, Chris Brown, Powerdove and the Lijiang Quintet.

Wong has shared her work internationally at venues including Fondation Cartier in Paris, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, Cafe Oto in London, Festival de Arte y Ópera Contemporánea in Morelia, Mexico and The Stone and Roulette in New York City. She is the recipient of grants from the Center for Cultural Innovation, American Composers Forum, San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music and Meet The Composer. Wong is a Civitella Ranieri Foundation Fellow and has also been an artist-in-residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts and Yaddo. She currently works and resides in the San Francisco Bay Area."

-Theresa Wong Website (https://www.theresawong.org/about)
9/20/2021

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

"Tim Perkis has been working in the medium of live electronic and computer sound for many years, performing, exhibiting installation works and recording in North America,Europe and Japan. His work has largely been concerned with exploring the emergence of life-like properties in complex systems of interaction.

In addition, he is a well known performer in the world of improvised music, having performed on his electronic improvisation instruments with hundreds of artists and groups, including Chris Brown, John Butcher, Eugene Chadbourne, Fred Frith, Gianni Gebbia, Frank Gratkowski, Luc Houtkamp, Yoshi Ichiraku, Matt Ingalls, Joelle Leandre, Gino Robair, ROVA saxophone quartet, Elliott Sharp, Leo Wadada Smith and John Zorn. Ongoing groups he has founded or played in include the League of Automatic Music Composers and the Hub -- pioneering live computer network bands -- and Rotodoti, the Natto Quartet, Fuzzybunny, All Tomorrow's Zombies and Wobbly/Perkis/Antimatter.

He has taught at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) and the California College of the Arts (CCA); has been composer-in-residence at Mills College in Oakland California, artist-in-residence at Xerox Corporation's Palo Alto Research Center, and designed musical tools and toys at Paul Allen's legendary thinktank, Interval Research. In 2013 he was a resident fellow at the Mediterranean Institute of Advanced Research (IMéRA) of the University of Aix-Marseille in France.

His checkered career as a researcher and engineer has brought him a variety of interesting projects: creating data sonification displays for research physicists and biologists in France; designing museum displays for science and music museums in San Francisco, Toronto and Seattle; creating artificial-intelligence based auction tools for business; working on mobile phone based support systems for the blind; consulting on multimedia art presentation networks for the SF Art Commission and SF Airport; writing software embedded in toys and other consumer products; and creating new tools for sound and video production, research and analysis.

Recordings of his work are available on several labels: Artifact,Tzadik, New World, Metalanguage, Rastascan, Limited Sedition, Kajira,482, Lucky Garage and Praemedia (USA); EMANEM, Leo(UK); Sonore and Meniscus(France); Curva Minore and Snowdonia(Italy); Pogriff(Canada); ALKU(Spain); XOR(Netherlands); Creative Sources(Portugal).

He is also producer and director of a feature-length documentary on musicians and sound artists in the San Francisco Bay area called NOISY PEOPLE (2007), and the ongoing audio podcast NOISY PEOPLE (2015- )."

-Tim Perkis Website (http://www.perkis.com/_site/about/index.html)
9/20/2021

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

"Gino Robair has created music for dance, theater, radio, television, silent film, and gamelan orchestra, and his works have been performed throughout North America, Europe, and Japan. He was composer in residence with the California Shakespeare Festival for five seasons and served as music director for the CBS animated series The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat. His commercial work includes themes for the MTV and Comedy Central cable networks.

Robair is also one of the "25 innovative percussionists" included in the book Percussion Profiles (SoundWorld, 2001). He has recorded with Tom Waits, Anthony Braxton, Terry Riley, Lou Harrison, John Butcher, Derek Bailey, Peter Kowald, Otomo Yoshihide, the ROVA Saxophone Quartet, and Eugene Chadbourne, among many others. In addition, Robair has performed with John Zorn, Nina Hagen, Fred Frith, Eddie Prevost, Thinking Fellers Union Local 282, Myra Melford, Wadada Leo Smith, and the Club Foot Orchestra.

Robair is a founding member of the Splatter Trio and the heavy-metal band, Pink Mountain. In addition, he runs Rastascan Records, a label devoted to creative music.

As a writer about music technology, Robair has contributed to Mix, Remix, Guitar Player, and Electronic Musician (EM) magazine, where he was an editor for 10 years. He is the author of two books, including The Ultimate Personal Recording Studio (Thompson; 2006)."

-Gino Robair Website (http://www.ginorobair.com/bio.html)
9/20/2021

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


1. Sportsman's Paradise Music LA 1:03

2. Mo Frippy 2:34

3. Hi L8R Bra 2:49

4. Hang Bat5 Over 10:56

5. CA Mirror 12:33

6. Cthlhu Kids First 1:43

7. Zoundz - Yours to Discover 1:49

8. May Cal Oknotok 2:04

9. Kablama 8:07

10. Live Free Or Die Delphi2 16:37
sample the album:








descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Grosse Abfahrt is a project I started to explore a number of problems in freely improvised music. The first and most obvious of these is the problem of ensemble size, which I wanted to tackle head-on: GA ensembles are always of eight to ten players. This range seems to settle in a locale where there is a strong opportunity for individual sound-agents to emerge and make a statement against the ensemble backdrop, and also for the entire ensemble to cohere into long-form structures that transcend the productions of conventional improvised-music sociality (another problem addressed). How these ensembles are collected takes up another problem: that of the conflict between fluency and comfort among improvising compadres. Fluency between players' languages and approaches is desirable, of course; however, it can lead to complacency.

Grosse Abfahrt is made up of a core group of five players which does not vary. These people are all very familiar with each other's strengths, preferences, and foibles, yet they do not play as a quintet (well, on one occasion we did). To this core I add musicians who have not played with any of the core members. Often, these outsiders come from far away, and are playing as duos or trios already, so they arrive with some comfort and fluency in their own musical relationship. How these two dynamics come together to create music, with practically no introduction (much less, rehearsal), is our practice.

For the present realisation, I added one more player (Theresa Wong) whose instrument was of the same family as the outsiders. Being a local, she was to perform as a kind of 'bridge' between the instrumental sounds of the Werchowski-Chiesa duo on the one hand, and the social identity of the core quintet. The Werchowski-Chiesa duo played a sensitive and soulful opening set, the second half of which is presented here as HANG BAT5 OVER. With Theresa on cello, the three chamber strings formed a molten core to this Grosse Abfahrt. The music seemed to assemble itself into short pieces much of the time, although the evening featured a couple of longer discursions in the traditional Grosse Abfahrt style."-Tom Djll

Related Categories of Interest:

EMANEM & psi

Improvised Music
Electro-Acoustic
Electro-Acoustic Improv
European Improvisation and Experimental Forms
London & UK Improv & Related Scenes
Free Improvisation
Octet Recordings


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