Wednesday, January 28, 2009

[HvEXAS] Hans Tammen, Dafna Naphtali & Zachary Seldess

I believe I may have mentioned this back when tickets went on sale, but just in case... here's the official press release.  If you are not already familiar with Hans, think Fred Frith.  If you are not already familiar with Fred, think Robert Fripp (not because they are at all alike, but rather, because they are often confused anyway, so why stop now?).

In any case, ignore the near impenetrable text of the official release, and just come check this out.  It promises to be a fun, exciting and  mind-bogglingly wild performance!



Mechanique(s) duo is composed and improvised music by Dafna Naphtali and Hans Tammen -- live computer-based electronics and audio processing, "endangered" guitar and voice.  In their active collaboration since 1998, the duo probes and playfully undermines the overlap of various elements of their technical and aesthetic practices, in compositions and improvisations for Naphtali's interactive processed sound/noise system and 4-octave vocal range, and Tammen's mechanical and energetic laptop manipulations of modified guitars.  The duo is on a crazed collision course of the acoustic and the electronic – all along the route paying homage (in a twirl of the radio dial) to music concrete, free jazz and European improvised music, as well as the contemporary classical and all manner of non-Western musics.

During their performances, Naphtali uses her custom Max/MSP programs (that she has been writing and adjusting since 1993) to filter/sample and
otherwise mutate her voice as well Tammens' sounds.  She then plays those sounds as a new instrument of her own invention, at times as a curious accompaniment to her voice.  

Hans Tammen is a composer/guitarist whose music has been described as an alien world of bizarre textures and a journey through the land of unending sonic operations.  He uses a wide array of mechanical preparations for guitar (including brushes, small stones, a small electric fan, cigarette lighters, an Ebow and chopsticks) that are processed in completely other and more personal ways with his own custom Max/MSP programs and with his unusual take on guitar-based control. Signal To Noise called his works "...a killer tour de force of post-everything guitar damage", All Music Guide recommended him: "...clearly one of the best experimental guitarists to come forward during the 1990s."

For the performance at Proctors, the duo will collaborate with Zachary Seldess on video.  A native of Chicago, composer and video artist Zachary Seldess has collaborated with artists in many mediums including theater, dance, film, and poetry.  Seldess is currently pursuing a PhD in composition at The Graduate Center CUNY where his primary teachers are Amnon Wolman and Morton Subotnick.

Tickets for Mechanique(s) in the GE Theatre at Proctors on Friday, February 27, 2009 at 7:30 P.M. as part of the Dangerous Music Series are $16. Tickets are available at Proctors Box Office, (518) 346-6204, or online at

This performance is funded by New York State Music Fund established by the New York State Attorney General at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.

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