Serving the San Francisco Bay Area New Music Community

Sun, May 5 2019 7:30 PM

Virtual Balboa, Monopiece, Seeded Plain + Sudhu Tewari



SEEDED PLAIN (Jay Kreimer + Bryan Day)

Sudhu Tewari is an electro-acoustic composer, improvisor, and tinkerer in sound, kinetic and interactive art. He has been called a professional bricoleur, junkyard maven and young audio-gadgeteer. An early interest in disassembling alarm clocks and coffee makers gave rise to electro-acoustic instruments constructed with the remains of discarded stereo equipment, kinetic sculptures and sound installations. Sudhu builds audio electronics, acoustic instruments, kinetic sculptures, interactive installations, wearable sound art and recently began working with bicycles with wide variety of end results.

Monopiece (Nathan Corder, Timothy Russell, Matt Robidoux) formed at Mills College, Oakland, CA in Roscoe Mitchell’s improvisation workshop in 2017. Monopiece performances are frequently an occasion to collaborate with an additional member, forming a quartet. For this Active Music Series concert we are honored to be joined by vocalist / electronic musician and sound artist Danishta Rivero of Las Sucias and Voicehandler.

VIRTUAL BALBOA is comprised of three of the most formidable and uncompromising musicians in today's American underground: guitarist Zach Darrup, bassist Evan Lipson, and percussionist Ben Bennett.

Philadelphia-based percussionist Ben Bennett's boyish, unassuming appearance provides no hints to the astounding, iconoclastic creativity within, fueled by a desire to get the most varied and visceral array of sounds from the simplest of instruments. Bennett has developed a unique approach to percussion which takes the lineage of free-jazz, free-improvisation, reductionism, and extended technique playing as its foundation. In searching for an expanded sonic palette, and more fluid movement between various techniques, he distilled the drumset into a small collection of drumheads, stretched membranes, and other objects which offered a wide variety of unconventional sounds from very few materials, which could be rearranged into different combinations during a performance.

This aesthetic development also translates into a practical advantage, as this setup can fit into a backpack, allowing for unencumbered traveling, which Bennett has been doing actively for the past 12 years, touring North America and Europe as a soloist, and with a number of collaborators, who include Michael Foster, Jack Wright, Evan Lipson, Jacob Wick, Tashi Dorji, Leila Bordeuil, Travis Laplante, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Zach Darrup, Brandon Lopez, Nate Wooley, Aaron Zarzutski, and Arrington DeDionysio.

Within the last few years, Bennett has gained international notoriety for his series of "Sitting and Smiling" live-streamed internet videos, which feature him sitting without moving for four-hour blocks of time, bearing an enormous grin on his face. These 300 videos (and counting) have cumulatively garnered over 16 million views from people in over 200 countries and have been the subject of articles in The Atlantic, Vice and many other media outlets. Bennett is also a performance artist, spoken-word artist, sculptor and skilled urban forager.

Zach Darrup is an improvising guitarist currently living in Philadelphia. During his early teenage years in the rural coal region of Pennsylvania a strange boy appeared like an angel, carrying a large cd booklet of wild musics of all sorts. This chance meeting at a pizza shop, plus tumultuous relationships with his home turf, school teachers, and other agents of law and rule enforcement led Zach to drop out and skip town, devoting himself to following music wherever it would take him--somewhere else. His techniques are informed by the musical possibilities of film language, jovial mockery and mimicry of plants, animals, and audience members, thoughtful room listening, word play, colors, and culinary experiments.

Evan Lipson has operated as a musician since adolescence, intuitively seeking the liminal realms in which intellect and instinct, history and myth, and creative and destructive force intersect. Drawn towards aberrant perspectives at an early age, his formative experiences were primarily rooted in extreme and often discordant forms of rock, free improvisation, modernist composition, jazz, outsider pop, soundtracks, noise, and electronic music. Lipson has written music for several films, as well as an ongoing collaboration with Duplex Planet-creator David Greenberger. He also may or may not have some degree of affiliation with an organization known as MEINSCHAFT. Past units include Normal Love, Satanized, Wrest, Dynamite Club, Hisswig, Psychotic Quartet, Fuck Your Feelings, and the Weasel Walter Trio. Lipson has toured throughout North America and Northern Europe, as well as Taiwan and Japan. His music has been released on a number of imprints including SKiN GRAFT, UgEXPLODE, High Two, and Public Eyesore.