Ashley Paul is a performer and composer based in Brooklyn, New York. She uses an array of instruments including saxophone, clarinet, voice, guitar, bells and percussion, mixing disparate elements to create a colorful pallate of sound that works its way into her intuitive songs; free forming, introverted melody. This blend manifests beautiful and simple musical forms against acoustic experimentation. Her solo albums have received high praise being chosen "Album of the Column" in The Wire, number one on Byron Coley and Thurston Moore’s “Tongue Top Ten” in Arthur Magazine, and included on NPR's All Songs Considered “Best of 2010”. She has been interviewed in the German magazine Spex, The Sound Projector magazine, Foxy Digitalis and on Rare Frequency.
Ashley Paul is a performer and composer based in Brooklyn, New York. She uses an array of instruments including saxophone, clarinet, voice, guitar, bells and percussion, mixing disparate elements to create a colorful pallate of sound that works its way into her intuitive songs; free forming, introverted melody. This blend manifests beautiful and simple musical forms against acoustic experimentation. Her solo albums have received high praise being chosen "Album of the Column" in The Wire, number one on Byron Coley and Thurston Moore’s “Tongue Top Ten” in Arthur Magazine, and included on NPR's All Songs Considered “Best of 2010”. She has been interviewed in the German magazine Spex, The Sound Projector magazine, Foxy Digitalis and on Rare Frequency. As a performer she has appeared on multiple records released from PAN, ESP-DISK' and Tzadik.
aster is the duo of ashley paul and eli keszler. performing across the northeast the past 3 years they have developed a unique style of sound which combines keszler's piercing high pitched resonances from bowed crotales and cymbals with paul's altissimo sustains and drastic pitch bends, strings and song structures. the split tone combinations from these instruments is surprising and overwhelming, creating continuously shifting, multi-layered harmonics and intense inner ear sound. spinning discs, invented resonating metal configurations, bending reed tones and voice interference carefully blend with subtle sung melody, creating a wild texture that is both harsh and striking.
Eli Keszler is a composer/multi-instrumentalist based in Providence,
Rhode Island. He primarily uses percussion, bowed crotales, guitar as
well as invented instruments (his harps which use strings and motors)
to create his sound that balances sparse harmonics with shaterring
psycho coustic sustain and fast, free, high energy rhythm, all working
in balance with his integrated installations. In addition to his solo
releases, installations, visual art and performances, Eli has
performed, recorded or collaborated with artists such as Jandek (I.C.A Boston and at NYU),
Phill Niblock (performing on a new work of his for Crotales and soprano saxophone to
be released by Touch) , Aki Onda, Loren Connors, Roscoe Mitchell (Art Ensemble of Chicago),
Anthony Coleman (recording Lapidation released by New World Records), Joe
Morris, Joe Mcphee, Greg Kelley (Nmperign), T Model Ford, Ran Blake, Bryan
Eubanks, Ashley Paul and Steve Pyne (Redhorse). He performed in the
United States premiere of Mauricio Kagel’s Der Schall at Merkin Hall
in 2008 led by Anthony Coleman. He has toured both in the US (recently
at On Land 2010) , internationally finishing a 6-week European tour in
December of 2009, performing at Colour Out Of Space Festival in
Brighton England as well as Sound-Body-Movement in Ostrave in the
Czech Republic. In addition to performing over 25 other gigs in
England, France, Spain, Italy, Slovenia, Switzerland, the Netherlands
and Serbia. He has most recently completed his debut solo LP on the
legendary ESP-DISK’ titled Oxtirn. His CD titled Tilt, received a
feature in Wire Magazine along with his duo ‘Aster’ LP with Ashley
Paul (saxophone/clarinet/strings). His LP ‘Red Horse’ was recently
named the Tip of The Tongue on David Keenan’s Volcanic Tongue website.
In addition to his performing, his compositions and installations have been performed
at Jordan Hall, Mills Gallery, the 1st and 2nd Church of Boston, and Boston
Conservatory. He also runs the label REL records, which releases
hand-made art edition LP’s, CD’s and Cassette designs. Eli’s Rel
releases has received features in Wire Magazine, Arthur Magazine
(Thurston Moore and Byron Coley’s bull tongue), The Boston Phoenix,
Spex (Germany), The Sound Projector and Blow Up Magazine (Italy). It
is distributed internationally by Metamkine, Art-Into-Life, and
Volcanic Tongue and in the USA by Forced Exposure and Mimaroglu Music
"...fantastic LP of austere solo percussion and dark matrixes of
strings from this past collaborator with Jandek, with aspects of
Scelsi and Dumitrescu, , Keiji Haino and Biota..... This is an amazing
set that straddles 20th century avant garde thought, sound sculpture,
free jazz and contemporary drone and is one of the most lovingly
assembled packages to have passed through VT of late"
-david keenan (volcanic tongue, wire magazine)
“Anyone who’s been fortunate enough to catch Eli Keszler and Steve
Pyne’s Red Horse ...live can now bring it all home cuz these two east
coast sound junk beauty futurians finally made an LP (Rel Records
re1007). And it is awesome..... With all the various recordings of the
last decade exploring temporal interplay Red Horse...really achieve
some deep and artful result without losing the ball to excess or
-thurston moore and byron coley, bull tongue Arthur Magazine
aside from the virtuoso performance(s - eli’s next-level, pan-trajectorial spatter is better captured here than anything else i’ve heard), this one’s notable for the focus on the sculptural elements of his arsenal ; the motorized sound-icons & metallic, ringing overtones call to mind the mammoth, grinding automatons of jean tinguely & survival research laboratories, albeit filtered through a decidedly humanized master-concept ...
a major work ; for once i agree with the supplied hyperbole - this really does transcend genre, equally incorporating the areas-of-interest that fuel eli’s quest ; brutal free jazz, scaled back euro improv, the confined roar of late 70’s no-wave / art punk, and various aspects of post-war compositional dictates ..... hearing this as eli’s master-work ; naturally it comes highly recommended !!!
-Keith Fullterton Whitman on Oxtirn, ESP-DISK' release
NNA043: Eli Keszler / Keith Fullerton Whitman split LP
NNA is very excited to announce a split LP between world-renowned electronic music composer Keith Fullerton Whitman and multi-instrumentalist composer Eli Keszler. This LP is a conversation in sound between two prominent artists, one working in the electronic realm (Whitman), and the other in the world of live acoustics (Keszler). In fact, Whitman’s piece was inspired and created as a direct response to Keszler’s signature frenzied percussion style. Both sides of the record are full of incredibly detailed nuance-driven music. These artists work with sound on the microscopic level, deliberately placing each individual molecule of sound in it’s intended location. Whitman’s piece “Occlusion” is automated “machine music” warfare, utilizing rhythm as a textural tool, while Keszler uses live percussion, bowed metal, and other acoustics to act as a humanized response to Whitman’s machine-regulated assault, solidifying this record as a fantastic document of Human vs. Machine call and response. Original artwork by Eli Keszler.
currently living in providence ri w/ his girlfriend and his cat, geoff is a lifelong guitarist and sonic tinkerer. recent work has focused on the natural order achieved through chance procedure and games of memory / personal history, as well as ambient music. frequent collaborators include eli keszler and ashley paul, scott reber, kris lapke, and keith fullerton whitman - with whom he's been working at mimaroglu music sales since 2009. his record label, rare youth, has been dedicated to the preservation and distribution of obscure, regional experimental music since 2006.
Recorded on november 2010, 'Ithaca' stands as one of the missing links between the tradition of free jazz and the current explorations in sound art. Bringing together one of the greatest living free jazz saxophonists and a young talented percussionist and sound sculptor, you have a record that sounds like a 'classic' and yet way ahead of its time. McPhee’s playing here is so lucid that it feels like a compendium of all those aspects of his style that have enlightened his long career, alternating beautiful soft passages to almost silent moments, or exploding into fuorious 'fire music'. On his part, Keszler gives plenty of room to spread out, whether playing minimal rhythmic patterns or creating sound structures that collapse when joe's saxophone goes wild. Silence, harmony and noise, perfectly balance each other on a work that is improvised avantgarde music in its purest form.
The idea for the group came when soprano saxophonist Bhob Rainey decided to embark upon an ambitious cross-country tour, choosing trumpeter Greg Kelley and percussionist Tatsuya Nakatani as his travelmates. The three, who had been playing together in various groups for a number of months prior (most notably with multi-instrumentalist Masashi Harada), then began rehearsing regularly as a trio and recorded their first album at Studio 7A West in Charlestown, Massachusetts that summer. The album was released as 44'38"/5 by the Twisted Village label and the group began their 6 week cross country tour in November of that year. 2 weeks into the tour nmperign became a duo, with Nakatani departing for personal reasons.
Releasing an album of quiet abstract improvisations on a psych label and touring across the country garnered the group some attention. And despite Rainey's move to Chicago in 1999, the group remained very active that year, beginning their ongoing collaboration with electronic musician Jason Lescalleet, travelling out to the West Coast for a number of concerts and making a 7 week cross country tour later that Fall. All of this activity resulted in the release of This is nmperign's 2nd CD on Twisted Village (which featured the group's last performance with Nakatani and their first performance with Lescalleet) and the collaborative CD In Which The Silent Partner-Director Is No Longer Able To Make His Point To The Industrial Dreamer with Jason Lescalleet on Intransitive Recordings.
By the year 2000, Rainey was back in Boston and the group embarked on their first tour of Europe. It was at this time that the group began its relationships with a number of European improvisers including Axel Dörner and Andrea Neumann, with whom the duo would embark on a 4 week United States tour in September 2001.
Over the next few years, nmperign continued to travel the United States and Europe, including tours on both continents with percussionist Le Quan Ninh and dancer Yukiko Nakamura, an inexplicable pairing with noise provacateur Emil Beaulieau (including some collaborations which came to be known as nmpeRRRon), and collaborations with Jerome Noetinger & Lionel Marchetti, and Gunter Müller.
A seeming anomaly in the discography of nmperign is the 2003 CDr release Salt Peanuts released on American Tapes. Released in an edition of 80, the recording showcases 12 maniacal takes of the "head" section of the title standard as well 12 takes of the "head" of Donna Lee. Apparently the result of some good-natured heckling by John Olson and Aaron Dilloway of Wolf Eyes at the 2003 De Stijl/Freedom From Festival in Minneapolis, the recording showcases nmperign's sense of humor and conceptual rigorousness.
Points of reference
Despite the fact that the title of their first album was not a reference to John Cage (but simply the total time of the album divided by the number of tracks), nmperign has used a number of literary and other references in their titles, ranging from Marguerite Duras' The Malady of Death and Four Novels, Georges Bataille's Poems, Zen Master Eihei Dogen, a book of interviews with Jean-Luc Godard, Herman Melville's Pierre; Or, the Ambiguities, a box of Chinese tea, The Doors and micromosaic artist Henry Dalton.
The name nmperign itself is derived from the Latin phrase "igNotuM PER IGNotius," meaning "the unknown through the more unknown."
In 2009, Rainey moved out of Boston to New Orleans. This move was ironically timed with a renewed spate of activity from the band with the release of Ommatidia (their first duo recording since 2004's double LP We Devote Every Effort To Offer You The Best That You Deserve To Have For Your Enjoyment) on Intransitive Recordings and a 1-sided collaborative LP with percussionist Jake Meginsky on Rel Records entitled Selected Occasions of Handsome Deceit. The group's only performance as nmperign since Rainey's move was at the 2010 Neon Marshmallow Festival in Chicago, as a trio with Jason Lescalleet. Further concerts with Lescalleet are planned for 2011.
Bhob Rainey - soprano saxophone (1998-)
Greg Kelley - trumpet (1998-)
For the past ten years, composer/percussionist/sound artist Jake Meginsky has received training in various musical modalities under the auspices of Milford Graves, Archie Shepp, and Joe Platz. He has collaborated and performed with such artists as Joan Labarbara, Greg Kelley, Bhob Rainey, Joe McPhee, Thurston Moore, Sabir Mateen, Tatsuya Nakatani, William Parker, John Blum, Daniel Carter, Paul Flaherty, Arthur Brooks, and Bill Nace. His work has been presented in a wide variety of venues, including Vision Festival, Joyce SoHo Presents, Dance Theater Workshop, The Stone, Improvised and Otherwise, The No Fun Festival, The Flea Theater, Free 103, Work in the Performance of Improvisation (Bennington College, VT), Arts Center for the Capital Region (Troy, NY), Pioneer Arts Center (Easthampton, MA), The Fisher Center for the Performing Arts (Bard College, NY) and as a guest artist-in-residence at the University of Iowa. In 2006, Jake completed a national performance tour as musical director for Susan Sgorbati's Emergent Improvisation Project, performing at such venues as The Neurosciences Institute (La Jolla, CA), Bennington College (Bennington, VT), Flynn Center for the Performing Arts (Burlington, VT), and the New England Complex Systems Institute (Cambridge, MA). His work has been supported by several organizations, including the Bumper Foundation, Vermont Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additionally, Meginsky has been commissioned by such dance artists as Nora Chipaumire, Paul Matteson, Gwen Welliver, Cori Olinghouse, Katie Martin, Peggy Florin and by the new music ensemble Nex(t)works. His recordings can be found on Rel Records (Providence, RI), Open Mouth Records (Northampton, MA), Hells Half Halo (Seattle, WA), Wooden Finger Records (Belgium), Ultra Eczema Records (Belgium), and Ecstatic Peace Records (Northampton, MA). BA, University of Massachusetts at Amherst; MFA Bennington College. He is an instructor in Dance Accompaniment during the fall 2010.
oxtirn is the trio of ashley paul, (wagtail, rel records, digitalis)
eli keszler (esp-disk’, rel records, rare youth) and geoff mullen
(rare youth, type, barge recordings). in oxtirn they join together to
play the music of eli keszler’s esp-disk’ release, in combination with
paul’s wagtail label song aesthetic. the bands sound combines a
strange blast of free energy, organized structure, frantic string and
guitar decay, high register horns, motorized music on invented
instruments, with ashley’s basement song and string style holding it
together: the quiet song melds with the mechanical and physical
force in a fluid and striking way.
Paul & Maurey's music
is a unique mix of songs that teeter on the edge between fact and
and fiction. Ashley's floating vocals, slow turning guitar, screeching
clarinets and string clatter are held together by Sakiko's drumistic attack, simplified rhythm and half motion texture. All while Mori manages to double on keyboards in realtime, giving a sense of tonal weight and precisely timed melodic gesture to the music.
Red Horse is the Providence/New York based duo of Eli Keszler and Steve PynRed Horse creates a unique sound combining Pyne’s massive hand-constructed string instruments, motor-automated resonances, homespun multi-layered Leslies, speaker arrays and sculptural electronics with Keszler’s swarming percussion, bowed crotales, metal and strings, guitar and microphones. The music moves fluidly between powerful grinding metallic clatter, psycho-acoustic string sustain, piercing bowed crotale tones and aggressive free drum and guitar blasts. Red Horse seamlessly slips between areas with a dynamic and formal sense all their own.