fraufraulein (Billy Gomberg, Anne Guthrie) • Aaron Zarzutzki, Josh Berman, Jason Stein

Tuesday June 24th
doors 8pm, show begins at 9.
1550 N Milwaukee Ave Fl3
Chicago, IL 60622
$5-10 suggested donation

fraufraulein, Zarzutzki-Berman-Stein

fraufraulein is Billy Gomberg & Anne Guthrie.
tour, June 2014

Billy Gomberg: prepared electric, synthesizer, electronics
Anne Guthrie: french horn, electronics

on Anne Guthrie‘s Codiaeum Variegatum LP (Students Of Decay 2014)

Anne Guthrie in a acoustician and French horn player whose compositions offer a finely tuned mixture of field recordings and instruments.  For material so delicate in its pacing and character, there is a refreshing lack of preciousness about the source material.  Sources are indistinguishable as often as they are clear, and treated as often as they are clean, so these piece function neither as authentic documents of a place nor as showcases for instrumental techniques.  Codiaeum Variegatum seems more interested in the ability of these elements to create new places by virtue of their juxtaposition and interaction.

It’s a delight to hear the way the pieces slowly find and dissolve form.  They are relatively short and contain movements within themselves, yet nothing feels hurried.  The most pleasing aspect is the way that questions about methods – is that a loop? Are those birds or electronics? – while present and worthy of attention, are secondary to the overall atmosphere.  At the end of the careful and intricate processes Guthrie employed to craft these pieces, she is asking us simply to sit back and listen.

-Matt Krefting, The Wire

It’s been a long time since composers were limited to writing music for others to play. On her new Codiaeum Variegatum, New York-based acoustician and French horn player Anne Guthrie not only composes for brass and strings; she uses electronics to manipulate conventional instruments as well as field recordings made in natural and urban settings, so that found and played sounds take on each other’s qualities. On “Long Pendulous,” she turns her horn’s bleats into seal-like cries, which sound forlorn and frightened when surrounded by train-station ambience; on “Strongly Leaning With Irregular Crown,” insects and birds seem more lyrical and purposeful than the tentative cello melody that answers them. Though Guthrie visits profound transformations upon her material, she also lets chance events—a bug smacking into her microphone’s shield, for instance—influence the course of her music. The way she makes the various combinations in her music—happenstance occurrences with intentional interventions, played instrumentation with collected sounds—proposes new and complex relationships between those elements.

-Bill Meyer, Chicago Reader

on Billy Gomberg‘s False Heat LP (False 2013):

Brooklyn sound artist Billy Gomberg operates in the fertile grounds between elecroacoustic improvisation and roughly composed minimalism, finding himself in the same camp as Jason Kahn and Machinefabriek.  Both of the side-long pieces of False Heat slowly rise and fall in singular arcs, albeit through distinctly different means.  An exhausted drone flutters at the edge of perception of the first untitled track with deadened oscillations, grey pulse tones and an oceanic thrum caught in a loose gravitational orbit.  The untitled B side increases the density and the volume, forgoing the electrified hauntings of the former track in favour of a billowing impressionism.  Here, Gomberg pulls back the gurtain on his instrumentation for guitar and synth, allowing them to develop into a wistful fraught with melancholy and swollen emotion.

-Jim Haynes, The Wire

on Delicate Sen (trio with Richard Kamerman) Four Years Later (since. why not) (Copy For Your Records, 2014)

An unexpected point of reference surfaced in my head while listening to this altogether wonderful new recording by Billy Gomberg (synthesizers), Anne Guthrie (French horn, preparations) and Richard Kamerman (drums, junk, YouTube, Deicide)–I found myself thinking of work done by the pre-Don Moye Art Ensemble, music from 1968-69 in which there’s (to my mind, anyway) a somewhat similar physicality and sense of space. Guthrie’s horn takes on Bowie’s role (about nine minutes into the second cut, she gives vent to a couple of startlingly Bowie-esque bleats), Gomberg perhaps Jarman (even some deep log drum echoes late on the first track!) and Kamerman a combo of Mitchell and Favors on “little instruments.”

Long tones of multiple kind, electronic and horn-generated, the latter sometimes strangled but always poignant, arrayed among a beautifully full yet spacious clatter, the three pieces sustained very ably, never over-meandering. There’s a wealth of great stuff here–repeated surprise as one delightful passage after another surfaces, unexpected but making sense in hindsight. Gomberg’s sensuous tendencies on synth are accommodated here more fully than I’ve heard before, not by simply an opposing stance taken by, say, Kamerman, but by choosing sounds that give those lush layers more weight, even if that element is (I take it) a YouTube instructional video on drawing a rabbit. Needless to say, the same works in reverse and more with Guthrie threading between and above. Roscoe Mitchell meets AMM may be overselling things but this marvelous session does hint at something new, even as it evokes something old. Great work, very exciting.

-Brian Olewnick, Just Outside

•For more than ten years, cornetist, improviser, composer and music presenter Josh Berman has been an essential contributor to Chicago’s active improvised music scene. His work encompasses both developing opportunities and forums for presenting improvised music – as co-founder of the critically acclaimed Umbrella Music Group and performing in a variety of highly collaborative formats -including as bandleader of his own groups, Josh Berman’s Old Idea and Josh Berman and His Gang, and as co-leader of the Chicago Luzern Exchange. In Down Beat Magazine’s Critic’s Poll, Berman was voted Rising Star, Trumpet. In addition to his work as bandleader, Berman has performed and recorded with some of the most internationally respected improvising musicians and composers in jazz and improvised music including Bill Dixon, Ab Baars, Ken Vandermark, Rob Mazurek, and Paul Lytton. He has toured the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan.

•Jason Stein was born in 1976andisoriginally fromLong Island, New York. Stein is one ofthe few musiciansworking today tofocus entirely on the bassclarinet as a jazz and improvisational instrument. He studied at Bennington College with Charles Gayle and Milford Graves, and at the University of Michigan with DonaldWalden and Ed Sarath. In 2005, Stein relocated to Chicago and hassince recorded for such labelsas Leo, Delmark, Atavistic, 482 Music and Clean Feed. Stein hasperformed throughout the USand Europe, including performances in festivals in Lisbon, Cracow, Utrecht, Barcelona, Debreccen and Ljubljana. He has had the opportunity toperform with a number of exciting local andinternational musiciansincluding: Michael Moore, Jeff Parker, Oscar Noriega, RudiMahall, Ken Vandermark,Rob Mazurek, Jeb Bishop, IngebrigtHaker-Flaten, Urs Leimgruber, Pandelis Karayorgis, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Tony Buck, Eric Boren, Kent Kessler, Tobias Delius, Michael Zerang,Michael Vatcher, Peter Brotzman, and Wilbert DeJoode.

•Aaron Zarzutzki is an improviser of various sorts. He works primarily with misuse and perversion of objects and systems. Virtuosity, volatility, futility, and capability are thought of. Zarzutzki currently lives, works, and plays in Chicago.

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