Aug 11: Bad Jazz, Greg Gorlen, & Ben Goldberg/Sheldon Brown/Vijay Anderson

BAD JAZZ with Alex Cohen & Justin Clifford Rhody
Bryan Day – invented instruments
Tania Chen – toys, lo-fi electronics, piano
Justin Clifford Rhody – trumpet
Alex Cohen – electric guitar

Greg Gorlen

experimental musician (since 2003) and visual artist (since 2013). interests include harsh noise, cassette loops, pure data, photocopiers, and raw aesthetics.
https://soundcloud.com/nocturnalsignal
Ben Goldberg/Sheldon Brown/Vijay Anderson
The trio, which began in 2007 in Oakland California, features the unique instrumentation of Alto Saxophone, Clarinet, and Drums. They recently performed at the Novara Jazz Festival 2012 in Novara, Italy. The group specializes in a unique form of improvisation, which focuses on a subtle, continually expanding blend of shifting counterpoint and rhythm, inviting the listener to contemplate the spontaneous unfolding of melodic and harmonic structures. This approach explores the musical and intellectual legacy of masters such as Steve Lacy, Denis Charles, Ornette Coleman, and Thelonious Monk with the goal of creating something unique and new. As one fan stated at the group’s Italian debut, the trio pursues the “Advanced Tradition”.

Active Music Series
Omni Commons, Ballroom
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland
Doors at 7pm
Music promptly at 7:30pm
$10 suggested donation, no one turned away.
activemusic.wordpress.com

July 14: Duo No Harm, Thingamajigs Performance Group, & Marshall/Allen/Spirit

Duo No Harm is saxophonist Kasey Knudsen and guitarist Luke Westbrook –living compositions emerge out of collective improvisations. Leaning and shifting from elemental and timbral spaces to linear tonal narratives, the group makes full use of their respective and shared musical vocabularies. Form and absence are embraced willingly as both instrumentalists seek to nurture these improvisations into meaningful musical stories of all sizes and sorts.

The Thingamajigs Performance Group (TPG) emerged from the long-term collaborations between individual artists that now make up its ensemble members. Using unusual musical instruments, TPG combines traditional Eastern sensibilities with modern American technologies and performance practices. Creating pieces in a group collaborative process that sometimes incorporate voice and multimedia elements, this ensemble of musicians expands and contracts within each performance situation. For this performance they will be performing as our “alter-ego” -Fraid o Freyja, a group consisting of electric guitar, organ and drums.

Marshall/Allen/Spirit represents the convergence of three highly individuated approaches to instrumental technique and improvisational structure, emphasizing a dedication to craft and intransigent resistance to banality which spans three generations. Joshua Marshall (tenor saxophone), Josh Allen (tenor saxophone) and Spirit (drums/percussion) have developed a collective vocabulary showcasing each member’s ear for energy, dynamism, compound rhythm, and polytonality.

Active Music Series
Omni Commons, Ballroom
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland
Doors at 7pm
Music promptly at 7:30pm
$10 suggested donation, no one turned away.

October 14th: Glou Glou + Beak + SL Morse

SL Morse performs feel-bad modernist literature through Morse Code translations from text to musical notation. Combining composition and improvisation, SL Morse is the project of Sarah Lockhart (drums) collaborating with other musicians. Past collaborators include Weasel Walter (guitar), Dominique Leone (keyboards), and Damon Smith (bass). For this night “The Yellow Wallpaper” with Sarah Lockhart (drums) and Aurora Josephson (voice/small percussion), both featured on the sample listed on the website above. Based on the short story by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, the music is a descent into insanity and explores restraint and confinement, politeness and imagination.

 

Glou Glou is a collaboration between Gretchen Jude (koto, voice, electronics) and Arjun Mendiratta (violin, electronics). Working within the confines of a consonant, primarily “ambient” aesthetic, glou glou focuses on timbre, tonality, and the happy accidents inherent in improvisation. They are guided equally by the works of Eliane Radigue and the Cocteau Twins.

 

Jordan Glenn’s BEAK is a percussion heavy ensemble the blurs the line between dynamic/energetic grooves and chaos.  The power of this electric ensemble is wheeled by Jordan Glenn’s curious baton, moving in and out of composed and spontaneous material. With Will Redmond, guitar & kalimba; Mark Clifford, vibraphone; Karl Evangelista, guitar; Bob LaDue, percussion; Jason Hoopes, bass; Robert Lopez, drums; Jordan Glenn, conductor/composer.

September 9th: Ornettology + Ze Bib! + Alex Christie

Ornettology is the brainchild of guitarist Myles Boisen, presenting unique arrangements of compositions by Ornette Coleman utilizing free ranging jazz landscapes, funky grooves, and harmolodic improvisation. With Steve Adams, Phillip Greenlief, John Finkbeiner, John Hanes, Chris Grady, Lisa Mezzacappa.

Ze Bib! is cellist/electronic musician Shanna Sordahl and percussionist Robert Lopez. Their music grapples with the spastic intensity arising from their explorations into sound worlds including noise, free improvisation, avant garde rock, and heavy drone.

Alex Christie’s work is the hybridization of hyper-intellectualized contemporary music theory and a childish obsession with explosive sound and bright, flashing lights. He performs as a laptopist and saxophonist in several veins of music, ranging from experimental improvisatory noise to electronic dance and freely improvised music.

Active Music Series – Second Tuesdays at the Uptown
Music at 9. Donations accepted.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Uptown
1928 Telegraph
Oakland

August 12th: Mwahaha | Fibers with Gargantius Effect | Mchtnchts

Active Music Series presents Mwahaha | Fibers with Gargantius Effect | Mchtnchts

Mwahaha. Psychedelic ebb & flows, electronic undercurrents, and elated pop flourishes bring into focus an attention to detail that’s staggering.

Fibers + Gargantius Effect. Combinations of free improvisation, Balkan swing, chamber jazz, texture and tone with Murray Campbell, violin, oboe & electronics; Randy McKean, reeds; Wes Steed, electronics and Kevin Corcoran, percussion.

mchtnchts. Lance Grabmiller and Kyle Bruckmann have been partners in shudder (with Phillip Greenlief) since 2004, on digital electronics and double reeds, respectively. In 2012, the two began exploring a duo configuration employing exclusively modular analog electronics. The results have thus far been delightfully nasty, unapologetically invoking a mutual love of vintage electronic (preciding the “-a” appendage) music and old-school industrial crunch.

Active Music Series – Second Tuesdays at the Uptown
Music at 9 No cover, donations accepted.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Uptown
1928 Telegraph
Oakland

July 8: SFSoundOrchestra In C + Malocculsion + Gosling

Active Music Series presents SFSound In C + Malocculsion + Gosling

sfSoundOrchestra celebrates the 50th anniversary of Terry Riley’s “In C” and the “App Release Party” of “In C” for iPad created by sfSound’s Matt Ingalls and Henry Warwick from Ryerson University (Toronto) http://sfsound.org

M U S I C I A N S
Cory Wright, saxophone, Richard Worn, bass, Henry Warwick, ipad, Christina Stanley violin, Meerenai Shim, flute, Aram Shelton, saxophone, Monica Scott, cello, Stacey Pelinka, flute, Crystal Pascucci, cello, Theodore Padouvas, trumpet, Aaron Novik, clarinet, Lisa Mezzacapa, bass, Dominique Leone, keyboard, Benjamin Kreith, violin, John Ingle, saxophone, Matt Ingalls, clarinet, Diane Grubbe, flute, Phillip Greenlief, saxophone, Giacomo Fiore, guitar, Mark Clifford, vibraphone, MaryClare Brzytwa, flute, Kyle Bruckmann, oboe/english horn, Jacob Abela, melodica

 

Malocculsion uses voice,  tapes, loops, homemade  electronics, and  field  recordings to create a dark  mirror of  the unknown through audio and  visual trap  door psychosis and  high  tension performances.

Danishta Rivero (Voicehandler,Blood Wedding) and Sarah Elena Palmer (EFFT, Lutra Lutra) are Gosling; an electro-acoustic soundscape project that uses analog machines and acapella effects.

Active Music Series – Second Tuesdays at the Uptown
Music at 9 No cover, donations accepted.
activemusic.wordpress.com

June 10th: Ochs Robinson + Talk More + Watkins / Bonansea Duo

Active Music Series presents Ochs/Robinson + Talk More + Watkins / Bonansea Duo

Ochs Robinson : Performing together in various ensembles since 1991, Larry Ochs and Donald Robinson performed for the first time as a duo in 2011 in their hometown San Francisco Bay Area. Ochs and Robinson first performed together in the Glenn Spearman Double Trio. From 1994 to 2002, they worked with bassist Lisle Ellis in the trio What We Live, a band that added incredible guests for special concerts/recordings including Dave Douglas, Wadada Leo Smith, Nels Cline, John Zorn, Miya Masaoka, Saadet Turkoz and Chris Brown. From 2000 until 2010 Robinson was part of the Larry Ochs Sax & Drumming Core featuring drummer Scott Amendola, as well as Satoko Fujii and Natsuki Tamura from 2007 – 2010. As Ochs says, the duo format allows them to do ”some high-energy playing and things that are more spatial, as well as some homages to more popular music. In a sparse setting like this, the music hits a listener right away – nothing is obscured, everything is clear.”

Talk More inhabits the fuzzy regions between improvisation and composition, ambience and noise, accessibility and experimentation, stasis and movement, drone and melody. The group formed in late 2013 to explore new forms of collaboration through total improvised democratic dialogue and brings concepts of psychoacoustics, structure, form, and texture to a purely aesthetic experience. Aaron Oppenheim plays Laptop-instrument, Shanna Sordahl plays Cello and Electronics, and Andrew Weathers plays Guitar and Electronics. More about Talk More can be found here.

Watkins / Bonansea Duo As collaborators, the core concerns for Choreographer/Dancer Christine Bonansea and Composer/Performer Zachary James Watkins are shaping and experimenting. The work is centered in improvisation and deals with transmission of energy between mediums and motion, tension and release. The two negotiate infinite possibilities with degree of variations and limitations in space. They’re interested in exploring the density of the material in relationship within the space. 140504 Christine Bonansea Sonic Body series #6 3 from Mark McBeth | Projects 1 on Vimeo.

Active Music Series – Second Tuesdays at the Uptown Music at 9 No cover, donations accepted. activemusic.wordpress.com Uptown 1928 Telegraph Oakland

May 13th: Wild Hen + Lightbulb Ensemble + Sharmi Basu

Wild Hen is a group of four musicians who are deeply invested in the exploration, investigation and practice of free improvisation. The group performs scores written by Crystal Pascucci (cellist), which utilize a variety of notational styles including standard, graphic and text that frame and focus the improvisations for each piece. They will be performing from a suite of five pieces for clarinet, cello, vibraphone and drums.

Sharmi Basu attempts to catalyze a political, yet ethereal aesthetic through combining her strict anti-colonial and anti-imperialist politics with a commitment to spirituality within the arts. Beast Nest, Sharmi’s primary performing project, uses her unwavering depression & restrained horror to channel left-eyed spirits that still walk the earth. While simultaneously clearing and entering, the sewage pipes of the body and the patriarchy congeal into watery soundscapes as a vehicle for achieving liberation through the darkest of fears. Based in Oakland, she is an MFA student at Mills College in the Electronic Music and Recording Arts department.

The Lightbulb Ensemble is a newly formed composers collective who champions experimental music, instrument building, and contemporary gamelan. The group is based in Oakland, CA., and emerged out of the culture of new music surrounding Mills College, as well as the longstanding Bay Area Gamelan Sekar Jaya. The Lightbulb Ensemble performs on steel metallophones built and designed by Brian Baumbusch, and heralds a new genre of American Gamelan rooted in the tradition of American experimentalism. Performing only new repertoire, the group presents in-house compositions and collaborates with active members of the American new music community, including The Paul Dresher Ensemble, The Jack Quartet, The Center for Contemporary Music, among others. Members of the group include: Brian Baumbusch, Wayne Vitale, Jon Myers, Keenan Pepper, Peter Sloan, Tim Black, Lydia Martin, Nava Dunkelman, Scott Siler, Ryan Jobes.

April 8th: Cash Pony +Tujurikkuja + Damon Smith (Houston)

Active Music Series presents Cash Pony +Tujurikkuja + Damon Smith (Houston)

Cash Pony is ethno-slacker psych prog algebra slamdunk music from Oakland CA. Owen Kelley, Guitar; Charles Lloyd, Guitar/Sitar; Ian Saxton, drums; Stevo Wright, bass.

Tujurikkuja is an ambient noise project from Christian Dixon (Earth Jerks, Death Sentence: PANDA!, Murder Murder) and Joshua Kit Clayton (Orthlorng Musork, ~scape, Mille Plateaux).

Damon Smith returns to the Bay Area for the first time since August 2010. Improvisations with Aram Shelton, alto saxophone; Scott Looney, keyboard; Jacob Felix Heule, percussion.

Active Music Series – Second Tuesdays at the Uptown
Music at 9 No cover, donations accepted.