For Electronics and Instrument: Phill Niblock and Al Margolis
ISSUE is pleased to present the debut performance of a new work by Al Margolis for a quartet of bassoon, trombone, laptop, and live video. Phill Niblock is joined by David Watson in a presentation of the now-classic "seth-work", for laptop and guitar. Margolis considers his works semi-composed improvisations. With an approach akin to a painter, he works from a palette of prerecorded materials often multi-tracked and slightly processed that are played back live in semi-random order. The live instrumentalists, Leslie Ross on bassoon and Monique Buzzarté on trombone, are free to improvise within the canvas of the material interacting with the recorded compositions. Katherine Liberovskaya provides a stunning visual accompaniment to these multi-layered sounds.
American minimalist composer Phill Niblock has been active in his multimedia endeavors since the mid-'60s. His music itself is characterized by multiple tones sounding simultaneously for long stretches, creating a very dense, seemingly static sound. He has been the director of the Experimental Intermedia Foundation in New York since 1985, which he participated in as an artist/member since 1968. He has produced music and Intermedia presentations at EI since 1973, and is the curator of EI's XI Records label.
Al Margolis has performed and recorded under the name If, Bwana since 1984, making music that has swung between fairly spontaneous studio constructions and more process-oriented composition. He is known as an activist of the 1980s American cassette underground through his cassette label Sound of Pig Music, and is the co-founder of experimental music label Pogus Productions. Margolis is label manager for Deep Listening, XI Records, and Mutable Music; plays bass guitar in the legendary punk/post-punk band Styrenes; and continues his work as If, Bwana. He has recorded and/or performed with Pauline Oliveros, Ione, Joan Osborne, Monique Buzzarté, Katherine Liberovskaya, Adam Bohman, Ellen Christi, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Jane Scarpantoni, Ulrich Krieger, David First, and Dave Prescott, among others.
Leslie Ross, performer, sound-installation artist, bassoonist and instrument-maker, has been exploring and experimenting with sound for over 25 years. In the past few years she has returned her focus to a detailed exploration and understanding of bassoon multiphonics. This process of investigation has led to the creation of solo works that use an extensive system of micro-amplification: 15 microphones are placed at tone holes on the instrument and the signal from these microphones are directed to many speakers around a room.
Monique Buzzarté, trombonist/composer, is an avid proponent of contemporary music who commissions and premieres many new works for trombone alone and with electronics in addition to creating her own compositions. Ms. Buzzarté's most recent recording, Fluctuations with Ellen Fullman, was hailed by the Wire magazine as one of the Top 50 Records of 2008.
Katherine Liberovskaya is a video/media artist based in Montreal and New York. Involved in experimental video since the 80s, she has produced numerous videos, video installations and performances shown at various events and venues around the world.
David Watson's music has been described as "completely unconventional, highly original and relentlessly inventive" (Los Angeles Times). Originally a guitarist, Watson has been a key player in New York's downtown scene since 1987. Using the Highland Bagpipes has been an ongoing project since the early '90s, with Watson remaking this traditional instrument into a vehicle for contemporary sound.
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