Portuguese pianist/composer Simao Costa’s new CD explores the multiplicity of sounds available to a piano that has been prepared, electronically altered or supplemented, and even played in its native state.
The unifying theme that emerges from the seven tracks collected here is the richness of the contrasts that bind and separate the muted, low-sustain sounds of the prepared piano on the one hand, and the ringing tones and harmonies of the instrument unmodified on the other. Putting the two in motion with and against each other is something Costa does effectively throughout the set. Often, the music will take on the character of a gamelan or detuned carillon nested within resonantly pedaled left hand figures. On top of it, Costa will frequently layer in the acute hum of feedback and droning electronics. These timbral experiments are largely cerebral in affect, but surprisingly beautiful impressionistic passages are liable to erupt unexpectedly, particularly on the fourth and sixth tracks. The last and longest track shifts attention away from contrasts in timbre and resonance and focuses instead on the possibilities of rhythmic variations within a pulse, its deliberately narrow range of pitches wrapped in the buzzing and rattling sounds of distressed metal.
netcat + Volpicella & Marcus Quartet
Thu., July 24; 8 PM; $5 – $15 suggested donation at the door
Earshot Jazz’s annual Jazz: The Second Century series presents netcat (Brandon Lucia, David Balatero, Andrew Olmstead), exploring the intersection of technology and free improvisation, combining computers, drums and cello. The Tim Volpicella – Michael Marcus Quartet features Grammy-nominated guitarist and recent NW transplant Tim Volpicella and Teatro ZinZanni bassist Michael Marcus, steel guitarist Lucien LaMotte ,and drummer Max Wood.
The Noise Makers
Sat., July 26; 8 PM; $7 at the door
The Noise Makers explores the essence of music by weaving in and out of pre-composed material and group improvisation. By means of medley, The Noise Makers tonight will present their concept through a more theatrical approach. Inciting the help of an M.C. known as Sister Nader, The Noise Makers will take you on a journey of surreal entertainment.
Briggan Krauss & Wayne Horvitz
Fri., July 25; 8 PM; $5 – $15 suggested donation at the door
Seattle ex-pats Briggan Krauss and Timothy Young reunite with long time collaborator Wayne Horvitz along with some of Seattle’s finest for an evening of mixed-ensemble improvisations. With Alex Guy: viola, violin; Timothy Young: guitar; Naomi Siegel: trombone; Briggan Krauss: alto sax, guitar; Beth Fleenor: clarinet, bass clarinet; Wayne Horvitz: piano, electronics.
THU. 7/31 – Earshot’s Jazz: the 2nd Century series: Greg Belisle-Chi + Trimtab
Friday, August 15 – San Francisco, CA
Best Coast Jazz Composers Series
Center for New Music
Darren Johnston’s Troubled Trio (Kanoko Nishi – koto, piano / Matt Szemela – violin / Darren Johnston – trumpet)
55 Taylor St / 7:30pm / $12/$10 members of the Center http://centerfornewmusic.com/
Sunday, August 17 – Oakland, CA
468 19th St. / 9 pm / $15
26 July 2014: Usurp’s “PhonoPollock” performance at The Optophonic Workshop. Tramlines Fringe Festival. The Montgomery, Surrey Street, Sheffield, S1 2LG. 2pm to 11pm.
What might have Jackson Pollock’s canvas sounded like while he thrust, dripped and splattered paint on it? Using a variety of paints and a large, sonic canvas, the Conspirators of Pleasure (Poulomi Desai and Simon Underwood) will lead a workshop to find out. Visitors will become performers, the textural sounds created will be processed and performed live with projections. Also featuring Adam Bohman, Sharon Gal, Rhodri-Davies, Blood-Stereo and many more. Organised by Peak Signal 2 Noise. The Conspirators of Pleasure will also perform in the evening with their modified sitars, toys and instruments.
8 – 10 August 2014: Usurp presents the “Toy Arkestra” at Supernormal Festival 2014
Braziers Park, Ipsden, Wallingford, Oxfordshire, OX10 6AN
Usurp will be at the eccentric Supernormal Festival again this year creating the “Toy Arkestra” – an ecstatic, musical fusion of Sun Ra and noise-making toys. http://www.conspire.org.uk
13 September 2014: Usurp presents “Percussion Supersonic” at Fort Process – exploring the acoustic spaces of Newhaven Fort, Fort Road Newhaven, East Sussex. BN9 9DS.
Performance and sound installation with modified sitars, radios and explosive visuals. Also featuring Peter Brotzmann, Max Eastley, Zimoun and many more. http://fortprocess.co.uk/poulomi-desai