Until April 2018 Bring Your Own Beat was the show in which Transistor Radio invited sound artists of all kinds to create an original piece. Beginning in June 2018 BYOB also became a platform for guest DJs to craft and present a playlist of songs. Both formats are archived below.
EPISODE GUIDE (DJ format)
Our guest DJ this month is Tricia Zelazny of The Vintage Lifestyle.
If you're a vintage vixen trapped in a modern world, you can play dress-up every day in styles from your favorite bygone eras by shopping here. Tricia loves vintage-style clothing just as much as the next lady, or gent, and carries a vast assortment of unique items that will make you feel like a classy '20s movie star, a retro '50s pin-up bombshell, or a hippie chick from the free-spirited '70s.
If you are in the Chicago area, she can offer you a private styling tour to all of the best vintage stores. If you never have worn vintage but would like a private styling session to explore the possibilities, then Tricia can make it happen!
Last, but not least, Tricia offers interior design services.
Says Tricia: My love of fashion started at a very early age, whilst watching my nana, a Polish stage ballerina, get dressed to go out for an evening dinner. It often involved the most opulent of metallic textiles, sparkly jewels, and mink furs. I would raid her closet and play dress-up with her luxurious clothing. So naturally, with my love of textiles and fashion, I pursued a degree in textiles and, later, a degree in interior design.
For me, fashion has always been a vehicle of self-expression. Whether it be my early days in high school as a New Wave romantic-goth or, later on, a bohemian gypsy traveler, I always loved how fashion created an instant mood to start the day. I would often get complimented on the streets about my ensembles.
Find out more at Tricia’s new website.
1. The Blue Nile "Tinseltown in the Rain"
2. Prefab Sprout "Bonny"
3. Voyage Voyage "Desireless"
4. Koop "Koop Island Blues"
5. The Pharcyde "Passin' Me By"
6. Kadhja Bonet "Honeycomb"
7. Vashti Bunyan "Train Song"
8. Roy Orbison "In Dreams"
9. Chris Isaak "San Francisco Days"
10. The Smiths "Bigmouth Strikes Again"
11. Savages "Husbands"
12. Ministry "Revenge"
13. Pixies "Cactus"
14. The Modern Lovers "Pablo Picasso"
15. Led Zeppelin "Going To California"
6. The Waterboys "This Is The Sea"
17. Neil Young "Harvest Moon"
18. Richard Hawley "The Ocean"
19. Sufjan Stevens "Mystery of Love"
20. Kraftwerk "Computer Love"
Our guest DJ this month is Julia Marchenko, owner of RareJule Vintage, a mostly online, vintage clothing emporium based in Evanston. Her site has hundreds of vintage dresses, coats, lingerie, and accessories from the ‘20s to the ‘90s to help you step outside of the fast-fashion pace and into a playful, creative exploration of how a unique, vintage wardrobe can best help bring out your individual radiance.
Says Julia: “My shop's philosophy: It is the WOMAN who makes the clothes. Understanding that looking good comes from self-knowledge and self-love (not keeping up with appearances) is the driving force behind my business. In between raising my son and daughter, I search for vintage finds that express personal style, not trends or fashions.
”My home studio is just north of Chicago, in Evanston, where I take clients by appointment. Clothing may also be rented for either a single special night, or for the length of a theater production. Flexible terms are available. I also do personal shopping, styling and am known for pouring tea (and offering books) for those who stop in and share their time.”
Visit RareJule Vintage’s new website.
1. Duran Duran “Is There Something I Should Know”
2. Pink Floyd “One of These Days”
3. Jethro Tull “Wond'Ring Aloud”
4. Kate Bush “Night of the Swallow”
5. Cocteau Twins “Otterley”
6. King Krimson “Three of a Perfect Pair”
7. Movement “Lace”
8. Banks “Stick”
9. Gil Scott-Heron “I'll Take Care of You”
10. James Blake “Retrograde”
11. SBTRKT “New Dorp. New York”
12. Dalida and Alain Delon “Paroles Paroles”
13. Blonde Redhead “Spain”
14. Leonard Cohen “Who By Fire”
15. Bjork “Pagan Poetry”
16. The Rolling Stones “Heaven”
17. Sinead O'Connor “I Want Your (Hands of Me)”
18. Fleetwood Mac “Big Love”
19. The Cure “I'm Cold”
20. Talking Heads “Born Under Punches”
Chicago artist Victoria Loeb is our guest DJ this month. She was born in 1980 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In 1992, while studying classical dance, she met Argentine artist Alicia Maffei and began studying with her, later becoming her drawing assistant. Victoria attended the fine arts institute Prilidiano Pueyrredon and also studied under Argentine artist Miguel Ángel Bengochea. She now lives in Chicago, where she moved in 2003, and has a studio in Evanston. Visit her website.
1. James Brown "Please Please Please"
2. Eric Burdon & The Animals "San Francisco Nights"
3. Iggy Pop "The Passenger"
4. David Bowie "Rock N Roll Suicide"
5. Stevie Nicks with Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers "Stop Dragging My Heart Around"
6. The Rolling Stones "Midnight Mile"
7. Cowboy Junkies "Blue Moon"
8. Etta James "At Last"
9. Donovan "Catch the Wind"
10. Dolly Parton "Jolene"
11. Nancy Sinatra "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"
12. Urge Overkill "Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon"
13. Led Zeppelin "Tangerine”
14. Joan Jett "Crimson and Clover"
15. Siouxsie and the Banshees "Kiss Them For Me"
16. Echo & The Bunnymen "Lips Like Sugar"
17. Jane's Addiction "Jane Says"
Adam Rust, co-owner of Andersonville "fringe antiques" shop Woolly Mammoth, is our first guest DJ! He offers a mix of songs that he calls "dark, sort of funny, and tongue in cheek," which he considers "a really good explanation of what exactly Woolly Mammoth is." He covers musical terrain that stretches from Man Man to Evelyn Evelyn.
1. King Buzzo "Dark Brown Teeth"
2. Evelyn Evelyn "Evelyn Evelyn"
3. Prairie Ramblers "Ghost in the Graveyard"
4. Man Man "Engrish Bwudd"
5. Wreckless Eric "Whole Wide World"
6. Harley Poe "Everybody Knows My Name"
7. The Normal "T.V.O.D."
8. Jacqueline Taieb "Le coeur au bout doigts"
9. Chokeules "Murder Monday"
10. The Evens "All These Governors"
11. The Ex and Tom Cora "Everything and Me"
12. The Dead Milkmen "Serrated Edge"
13. The Sneaks "True Killer
14: Hurra Torpedo "Total Eclipse of the Heart"
EPISODE ARCHIVE (original sound piece format)
Brash Flair (Kristin Johnston and Joshua Wentz) are currently working on a new album for 2018. Part of that process involves exploratory studio sessions, trying out different instruments and equipment with the goal of developing a sonic palette. This piece, called "Tactile Improvisations," is a blending of three separate recordings of these texture examinations. Visit Brash Flair's website.
Episode #35: Trenchalant and hicksoncompactgroup (experimental)
This month we have two contributions, one from hicksoncompact group, the other from Trenchalant.
Stephen Dorocke and David Zerlin are experimental electro-ambient duo Trenchalant. The piece they created is called "Casting Solid State Shadows."
Our second contribution comes from hicksoncompactgroup, the solo project of Chicago-area musician Matt Pataky. Taking influence from minimalist, experimental, and roots music, while using various instruments and self-taught recording techniques, HCG attempts to make abstract songs which are timeless in sound. The original piece is called Some Never Made It.
This week's piece comes from Atticus Lazenby, a multi-instrumentalist, improviser, and composer. Originally from Maine, he studied music at Bennington College in Vermont. Shortly after moving to Chicago in 2014, Atticus formed the Atticus Lazenby Group, a jazz/funk/fusion sextet that performs original instrumental music. He also is one half of a duo project with saxophonist Ben Schmidt-Swartz; the two have performed at Transistor twice, and you can listen to both sets from this page.
Visit Atticus Lazenby's website.
Terry Tertiary is a musical artist from Chicago, who fuses the folk, hip-hop, R&B, electronic, acoustic and indie pop genres to make an original sound. With over eight years of performing experience, including being part of an eight-piece progressive jam band and a hip-hop duo, Tertiary has been honing his skills in singing, songwriting, producing, audio engineering, booking and managing. His work has earned him spots opening for Pusha T of G.O.O.D. Music, Machine Gun Kelly (MGK) of Bad Boy Records, and Ace Hood of We The Best Music Group/YMCMB. Terry Tertiary has delivered crowd-captivating performances at such venues as The House of Blues in Cleveland and Subterranean in Chicago. He has also been the UIC Radio host of the Wardens MidWest Radio Show since fall of 2014, helping bridge the gap between the underground music scene in Chicago and its taste makers. Tertiary has started branding an image by releasing music videos via his YouTube page and teaming up with the clothing and apparel brand Subliminal Tactix, also native to Chicago.
Terry Tertiary’s most recent musical project is his self-titled EP, which finds him collaborating with a few of his in-house producers. The “Terry Tertiary EP” is now available on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon mp3 and Google Play. With his eight years of experience playing guitar, producing and audio engineering, and his 10-plus years singing and rapping, he certainly has many more songs to release and is now looking for the perfect platforms for showcasing his live performances and expanding his already growing fan base.
This week's contribution comes from Katie Shlon, whose piece, "alleghenies / blue ridge / slight incline on haywood & highland" is, in her words, "three variations on the same theme recorded to tape on January 25th, 2016 on my bedroom floor in Greensboro, N.C. They were played on the Appalachian dulcimer after listening to some banjo improvisations I recorded from a front porch in Madison, N.C. in early August 2015. Also included is some bird and cicada sounds collected from Eastern Virginia and North Carolina.
Katie Shlon is an interdisciplinary artist and musician living in Greensboro, North Carolina. She holds a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has recently performed and exhibited works at Titanik Galleria in Turku, Finland, Urban Gray Ballroom in Greensboro, North Carolina, and on AcreTV. (website and soundcloud)
Jesse Giallombardo, a musician with diverse interests and projects. His solo musical works are centered around dissonant drone clusters, disorientation via layering, manipulation of prerecorded material and the celebration of impractical amplification devices.
Says Jesse about the piece: 'The title of this recording is 'Four Embarrassing Remembrances.' Steeped in resonance, echo and physical distortion, the sounds parallel the nature of the memories that ridicule us, teetering between soothing nostalgic swells and the failure of the fragile circuits we take for granted. This recording strives to be common ground between the artist and the listener, acknowledging a kinship without either party having to disclose the details.
This week's contribution comes from Aphorism, aka Josh Pyle, who has produced four original pieces: 'Outland 4,' 'Past the Event Horizon,' 'Soil' and 'Outland 3.' 'This particular set has a distinct sci-fi feel,' he says.
Aphorism's Josh Pyle is a Chicago-based artist who creates a powerful hybrid of analog and digital soundscapes. With a previous release on Tympanik Audio and a few compilation appearances spanning the range from ambient to experimental to industrial, Aphorism delivers heavy beats fused with melodic themes and digital complexities, blending disparate sonic elements into an innovative, cinematic style of modern electronic music.
This week's piece comes from Chicago guitarist Matt Christensen. 'In Your Shadow' was recorded with the help of keyboardist Brian Harding (Zelienople). This track will possibly make its way on to Matt's upcoming solo album.
Matt Christensen is a Chicago-based musician who has played in the band Zelienople for close to 20 years. His primary instruments are voice and guitar. He has recorded and performed with Good Stuff House, John Twells, Mind Over Mirrors, and as a solo artist. Matt has released solo records on Bathetic Records, Under The Spire Records, and independently through Bandcamp.
This week's piece comes from Robert Valentine, working under the name Reaktorplayer. He calls the piece 'Legal Murder' and says this: Legal murder is a dark subject that has been debated for centuries around the world. Some say, for example, that yes, killing during war is murder. Others take the opposite position that killing is not murder when it is part of a state sponsored action. Either way, there should be some thought about who makes the rules and where the money comes from to support war and other aggressive actions. These are some of the thoughts that were in my mind when creating this music.'
Robert Valentine has been experimenting with electronic music since 1972. Using Native Instruments Reaktor software and several hardware devices, Robert generates a broad range of highly unpredictable sounds that are controlled by MIDI guitar and keyboard.
This week we have a piece from Frankenstein Earphone Radio; it's called 'Nowhere Beats.'
Frankenstein Earphone Radio is Chicago native Steven Fletcher -- writer, multimedia and performance artist, currently living in Brooklyn. About the piece Steven says: 'Put your Reeboks on the dashboard and shift into Neutral for forty-forty-forty-three minutes non-stop.'
This week we have two pieces from Cinchel, 'Low Level' and 'Well Love,' a remix (and anagram) of 'Low Level.'
Cinchel is Jason Shanley, a Chicago-based musician working with guitar, effects and laptop to create abstract ambient music that is both minimal and dense. For the two pieces he's contributed for Bring Your Own Beat he used the Critter & Guitari Pocket Piano he purchased at Transistor last year. Says Jason: 'I really like this little instrument, but I didn't have time to work out a live set around it. As a consolation I wrote these two songs using only it with some manipulation and looping in the computer. I wanted to both show off the power of this little keyboard, and I enjoy imposing limitations on myself. I love playing guitar, but sometimes it's refreshing to look at the notes available in a different way and to do something that is less intuitive. I feel that it helps with creativity. I'm looking forward to incorporating more of this instrument into my recordings.'
This week we have two pieces from Nino Arobelidze, 'Just Being' and 'Prosti Menya.'
Says Nino: 'These two pieces provide a glimpse into a series of collaborations of mine focused on finding commonalities across genres, languages and artistic mediums.'
Music & Lyrics - Nino Arobelidze (BMI), Pablo Gordy (ASCAP)
'Prosti Menya' (Russian for 'Forgive me')
Music - Nino Arobelidze (BMI) & Pablo Gordy (ASCAP)
Lyrics - Vadim Molodyi (used with permission of the poet)
All instruments & samples - Nino Arobelidze & Pablo Gordy
Mixed & Mastered by The Laughing Man @ Laughing Man Studios, Chicago, IL 60647
Hailing from Tbilisi-Georgia, Nino Arobelidze moved to Chicago to make music and develop her sound. While still studying classical vocal performance at DePaul University Music School, Nino became the first vocalist to be an artist in residence at the North Shore Hotel in Evanston, where she held a weekly lecture/performance series for three years. Her time is currently occupied with her solo project and her side project - Forbidden Knowledge.
This week we have two pieces, 'Beat 1' and 'Beat 2,' from Chicago cellist April Faith-Slaker.
Says April: 'I use a looper, pedal effects and extended techniques (such as using found objects to alter the sound of the cello) to layer sound and melodies. Both [tracks] were created with the use of only one instrument (the cello) and one performer (me).'
Driven by looped cello melodies, April Faith-Slaker combines various genres of music and the use of technology to create a contemporary sound. Percussion and texture based on the use of pedal effects and amplified sounds enrich the layers of cello and create an ambient and experimental aesthetic. Recent music projects have included composing and performing for Omaha-based movement theater ætherplough, as well as completing a fellowship at the Union for Contemporary Art in Omaha.
Visit April Faith-Slaker's Soundcloud page.
This week's piece comes from Aidan Eubanks working under the name Charlie Moon. It's called 'Nothing Happened.'
Says Aidan: ''Nothing Happened' is a composition consisting of four sections that aim to deal with the idea of musical expectation. Expectation can be described as the feeling of the future in the present, a sense that musical parameters are leading to something, that something will eventually 'happen' and a resolution will occur. 'Nothing Happened' to seeks to shy away from musical linearity in order to subvert these expectations. Instead, it favors disorder, allowing sections to disintegrate, tempos to fluctuate and rhythms to fight for clarity. It was recorded using a modular synthesizer, acoustic guitar and contact microphone.'
Charlie Moon was created in 2014 by Aidan Eubanks (left) as a moniker for some strange new work that was emerging at the time. After a cycle of misdirected music projects such as Moon River and Elephemera, he began experimenting with new ideas on the textural and rhythmic content of his previous work. Based on series of layered improvisations and composed sections, the new musical features range from the abandonment of meter in preference of contour to micrometrical cycles to ethereal drones, tempo gradation and so on.
This week's piece comes from Earsatzm, a duo comprised of Diamond Luningning and Eric Sativa.
Diamond Luningning is a musician, improviser and composer in residence. A child prodigy, she gave her first xylophone recital at the age of sixteen months. While still in middle school, she performed at Norway’s Dysprosody Music and Sound Arts Festival with her piece, Shaz, dedicated to those who have been silenced and suffered discrimination within the Arab queer communities. Her work has been featured on the soundtrack to the film, Cerulean Respiration, and in the series Chompy: Dog Homicide Detective. She has collaborated with Frankenstein Earphone Radio, the performance artists Rook&Laser, and has recently worked with Azwidazade Ziddy on his Quantum-Orgonotics: Psychic Instillations project, currently on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art. Of TempoPuzzle-Motown#3, she says: 'Working with Eric, you don't always start where you end up, but in this case we did, and it felt right. For me, it's a piece about the madness of feeling trapped, and offers a suggestion on how to liberate yourself from that feeling, by going deeper into your madness, understanding your madness, letting it roll all over you, and you roll all over it, until you're writhing on the floor emitting glossolalia in the throes of the sublime epiphanies that accompany the synaesthetic trances of a mystic or a shaman. I dedicate this piece to Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier.'
Eric Sativa is a sound artist, an inventor and a lecturer who has been practicing noise composition for many years. I am Eric Sativa. People write these things themselves. Of the piece, I have this to say: 'BPM Puzzles are one style of composing I use that is an extension of my Loop Puzzles method, wherein all the information for a complete composition is packed within a single tape loop, with instructions for playback. The complete performance of the piece is realized through gestures and decisions made by the technician/performer/instrumentalist manipulating the playback of the loop using studio techniques. The result is like a puzzle box, something small and deceptively simple with hidden mysteries. I made many of these loops over the years, cutting up and stitching together millions of pieces of magnetic tape. Diamond and I did this piece with computers, and we only used one sound and I didn't even make it. It's the stock sample, Motown drummer number three. The result is in keeping with the original idea of the puzzle pieces, which was to rethink sound's relationship with narrative and linearity; to explore sound's micro-narratives and permutations, and learn how to push against the boundaries of time's passage. Working with Diamond helps me remember that sometimes you have got to go in to go out.'
This week we have a piece from Libby Reed working under the name Coat. She wrote the piece after moving from Chicago, her home for almost 20 years. It is no coincidence that this piece is also 20 minutes, she says, adding: 'It is about flux, the repetition and resistance in it and the beauty that can come with riding its waves instead of fighting them. I often find the most beautiful moments in life and music are inconspicuous, so I recommend listening to this piece with headphones for full effect.' Phil Spirito plays bass on one section about 10 minutes in and Libby plays electric and acoustic guitar, tenor banjo, cello, piano, accordion, percussive doodads, and she sings. Libby suggests that people listen to the piece with headphones. 'There's a few ambient things they might miss otherwise. Actually I mixed it on some headphones we bought from [Transistor] a while back. All of this is previously unreleased work.'
This week we have four original tracks from At Last At Last, an electronic trio featuring Justin Wood (guitar, bass, synth, programming; pictured), Mike Sipich (guitar, synth, programming) and Steve Sipich (drums, synth, programming).
1. Summer Tide
2. People of the Forest
3. Traveling Light
4. Monday Morning Quarterbacking
Says Justin: 'These tracks together as a piece are a tribute to the mind-blowing experience we shared performing at 2014 Electric Forest as Mouth Dakota. 'Summer Tide' is the anticipation leading up to the event -- the drive to Michigan and the unknown. 'People of the Forest' and 'Traveling Light' represent the overall positive vibes we felt the first night when the sun faded and the forest illuminated with light and sound. 'Monday Morning Quarterbacking' is a week later, back at work and trying to hold on to the experience.
This week we have a trio of original pieces from Marsden Giolas, a musician, producer, artist and DJ who currently works and resides in Chicago. He recently graduated from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago where he concentrated on audio/music production as well as new media/video art design and development.He is currently producing experimental electronic dance music that has a tendency to fall within multiple genres. This blurring of boundaries and genres is by far one of his output's greatest strengths.
Before joining forces with the Garden House label, Marsden released two extended players, two singles and one long player on Bandcamp as well as publicly available demo tracks on Soundcloud. He deftly incorporates the styles of intelligent dance music (IDM), glitch, ambient, down tempo, break beat, dub step and drum and bass into his music.
This week we have a trio of original pieces from a trio of Brooklyn musicians: Caroline Davis, Danny Meyer and Tyler Gilmore. The three pieces -- 'Time I,' Time II' and 'Misunderstanding' -- were composed by Caroline Davis and recorded in New York.
Caroline Davis is a saxophonist and vocalist based in Brooklyn, New York. She has played and worked with Bobby Broom, Dennis Carroll, Ron Perrillo, Allison Miller, Erin McKeown, Matt Wilson, John McNeil, and Ron Miles. Caroline is an ears&eyes Recordsartist.
Danny Meyer is a saxophonist who has played with Art Lande, Ron Miles, Tony Moreno, Colin Stranahan, Julia Holter, and Chairlfit. You can see things made by Danny at ThisIsAmazing.org.
Tyler Gilmore is a composer and electronic musician based in Brooklyn, New York. He has worked with Cuong Vu, Jenny Hval, Matt Wilson, Ron Miles, Peter Sommer, Ken Filiano, John Fedchock, and many others. Gilmore founded Brooklyn-based recording label Not Art Records.
onewayness is Adam Holquist, an experimental electronic musician from Erie, Pennsylvania. He uses hardware and software, synths, spoken word and field recordings, and a variety of acoustic and electric instruments to create atmospheric compositions that draw influence from vintage Berlin-school electronic music, minimalism, post-rock, and contemporary electronic 'listening music.'
Adam describes this track, titled 'The Shipping Forecast,' as a 'contemplation on the weather at sea, and the feeling of being simultaneously isolated and bombarded by outside signals.'
Carol Genetti is a vocalist, composer and installation artist. Her work is focused on the interplay between the voice as an expressive musical instrument and its extension into the sound-making realm. She has studied a variety of techniques including Western singing, Hindustani classical voice and Bulgarian folk music. Through these studies and her own explorations, she has developed a personal yet universal palette that is an abstraction of 'extended' voice sounds — breaths, overtones, and disconnected textual bits, squeaks, growls, non-verbal tones — sounds that evoke unconscious emotions and human physicality.
Dutch bassist Albert Wildeman relocated to Chicago in 2011 to pursue improvised music and has since performed with musicians including Fred Lonberg-Holm, Frank Rosaly, Dave Rempis, Tim Daisy, Tony Malaby, Jeb Bishop, Katherine Young, Mars Williams, Avreeayl Ra, Michael Zerang, Jim Baker, Jason Roebke, James Falzone, Juozas Kuraitis, Keefe Jackson, Nick Mazzarella, John Niekrasz and Guillermo Gregorio. In addition, he and Peter Maunu co-host and curate the Splice Series, which aims to present and bring together a wide range of approaches to improvised music and performance.
This week's original piece comes from Chicago electronic musician Christina Dennaoui, working under the name Volutes. She describes the track, called 'Spectres,' as 'an opportunity to try out a few new ideas that didn't neatly fit into the new album Volutes is working on. The mix was an exercise in taking disparate pieces and coalescing them into something expansive, organic. Some of these ideas will performed live at Transistor this Friday night, May 8th.'
Playing music for the better part of two decades, Christina Dennaoui's training began with jazz trumpet and guitar and has evolved to include electronic music production and composition. Volutes' sound is a mélange of Middle Eastern beats, deep house, jazz and bass music. In January 2014, she released her first EP, 'Elegant Grey.' Local Loop described it as a 'standout electronic listen' and The Deli Chicago called it 'a beautiful, elegant and at times haunting album.'
This week's piece comes from Chicago tenor saxophonist Chris Weller. It's called 'Desole,' which Chris describes as 'a solo saxophone piece melodically inspired by Ravel and the color wheel.'
Born and raised in Oak Park, Chris Weller discovered his passion for music in the 8th grade after hearing Charlie Parker, and has pursued music ever since. He went on to attend Berklee College of Music on scholarship from 2007-2010 where he received his bachelor's degree in Music Performance. He also performed extensively during that time in jazz, Latin, and hip hop idioms across the nation. After college, Chris moved back to Oak Park where he currently resides, teaches privately, and performs. Visit his website.
This week we have two pieces, one from St. Paul, the other from Pittsburgh.
The first piece is 'Construction427,' a real-time improvisation for voice and guitar by Becca Barniskis (words) and Nick Jaffe (guitar) of Downrange Telemetrics, a poetry and music collaboration with multiple artists and musicians.
Nick Jaffe is a St. Paul, Minnesota-based musician, recording engineer, producer and educator. As a guitarist Nick played on the Chicago hip-hop, soul and funk scene for over a decade (he recently moved to St. Paul) and over the years he has collaborated in a wide range of musical projects across many genres.
Becca Barniskis is a poet based in Minnesota. Her chapbook of poems, 'Mimi and Xavier Star in a Museum That Fits Entirely in One's Pocket,' is available also as a collaboration with musician Nick Jaffe in both vinyl LP and digital formats. She reads and performs her work around the Twin Cities and as part of Downrange Telemetrics.
Visit Downrange Telemetrics on Bandcamp.
The second piece is from Pittsburgh musician and visual artist David Bernabo. The track he has created is called 'Stow-in-the-Wold Cycle,' an episodic composition for one to five acoustic guitars. There is a mix of prepared and unadorned guitar. The prepared guitar utilizes an Ikea Allen key and a metal Ethiopian cross. A short twist tie was also used. The piece is an attempt to dip back into the free-improv arena while maintaining the melodic elements that David has pursued over the past few years.
David Bernabo has been a fixture on the Pittsburgh music and art scenes for a good while, actively participating in bands, dance ensembles, art initiatives, and film-making. Visit his website.
hicksoncompactgroup is the solo project of Chicago-area musician Matt Pataky. Taking influence from minimalist and experimental music to various forms of roots music, while using various instruments and self-taught recording techniques, HCG makes abstract songs that are timeless in sound. The track he has recorded for 'Bring Your Own Beat' is 'A Trip to Sleep, Part 1.' Using guitar and field recordings, the song begins where it ends. Played on repeat 'A Trip To Sleep' can appear to be a seamless long-form soundscape.
Zebec was formed in early 2014 with the goal of writing and performing original instrumental improvised music. The group is led by Columbus-bred guitarist and composer Ishmael Ali Zghoul and consists mainly of jazz musicians living in the Chicago area. The project is dedicated to exploring sound through the collaborative improvisation, jazz, free jazz, as well compositional and aesthetic concepts of the avant-garde.
Chicago native Blackdaylight's unique sound exists somewhere between Flying Lotus & The Neptunes. He is a trip-hop-soul-producing lover lost in the city of wind. Find him on Soundcloud.
Trio, duo, solo -- exciting instrumentation and fascinating combination of sounds. Low recorders ( bass, double bass, tenor ) meet string instruments (violin, cello, double bass) and create a unique world of noises, sounds and tones; gestures, moods and emotions.
The three pieces called 'Resistor' were especially created for Transistor:
'Resistor 3' - a trio, by XelmYa (Alexa Renger, violin; Sylvia Hinz, recorder; Ulrike Ruf, violoncello).
'Resistor 2' - a duo, Sylvia Hinz joined by John Strieder, double bass recorder and double bass. (John Strieder is a composer and artist from berlin; his composition 'Obsured Light' will be performed by XelmYa at Transistor this Friday night.)
'Resistor 1' - a solo by Sylvia Hinz, tenor recorder.
XelmYa, a trio from Berlin, performs music by living composers and artists, new music that is just happening now. Improvisation and sound research. Those matters are close to XelmYa's heart. Another topic: presenting works by female composers.
Three witty, poignant stories from Chicago story teller and actor Kevin Gladish, recorded for Transistor Radio, at Transistor's original Andersonville location, April 10, 2011. Sound by Dominic Armstrong.
Jon Monteverde has been producing and performing as XYZR_KX since 2000. In the past couple of years he's immersed himself in the world of electronic music machines, and on this episode of Bring Your Own Beat, he presents three techno tracks composed, sequenced, arranged, and performed entirely on one drum machine and one synthesizer. The tracks were recorded as live takes with real-time manipulation and tweaking. Jon hopes the result demonstrates an interplay between programmed rigidity and the unpredictable human touch.
Visit Jon on Soundcloud.
Together as Brash Flair, Joshua Wentz and Kristin Johnston blend their singular experiences into a partnership that has its roots in trip hop, downtempo electronica and vocal house. Their music combines relatable melodies and disparate textures while not adhering to standard pop song structures.
Says Joshua about 'Gemjam,' the piece they have contributed to 'Bring Your Own Beat': 'As a band we're always considering the way we bring our songs to the stage. Most of the time we are not writing with performance in mind, so it can be a challenge to fit everything into a setup that can be played by two people. Recently Kristin acquired a Korg Volca Sample, and in this session we recorded 40 minutes of her experimentation with the device, then boiled it down to 10 minutes. Using that as the foundation, we brought in additional samples, analog and digital synths, and effects that are mainstays of our current live set.
Visit Brash Flair's website.
Jessica Pavone's recent works for solo viola and voice stem from years of concentrated long tone practice and an interest in repetition, song form, and sympathetic vibration. She combines her long tone rituals with delay, understated melodies and sparse lyrical content while continuously experimenting with new forms. She is interested in the physicality of performing her somewhat larger-than-comfortable instrument and believes that cultivating physical bodies as a strong container for her thoughts is part of the creative process. The two tracks, 'Silent Spills' and 'Dawn to Dark,' were recorded for this show one weekend in mid-January in her friend Stephen Cooper's bedroom, and are both examples of Pavone's most recent and yet to be released solo viola material.
Visit Jessica Pavone's website.
The third track in this week's show is 'Albert,' devised and performed by Robert Lundberg, amplifier by Cyrus Pireh. Rob says he was playing with the idea of canon in solo performance by using an analog delay pedal and using the natural distortion of Cyrus's miniature telephone amplifier to enrich the tonal qualities of the bowed upright bass.
Visit Rob Lundberg on Bandcamp.
Keebs is a multimedia duo here in Chicago. This track, 'Space,' is by the musical half of the duo, Kiera Stevens. Keebs was recently included on Deathbomb Arc's 17th anniversary compilation 'No Children,' available for download on the label's Bandcamp page.
This week's piece comes from Chicago-based singer-songwriter Nino Arobelidze, who has submitted one of the tracks from her sophomore full-length release, due out in late 2015/early 2016. This is its public debut.
'Fade Into White'
Music & Lyrics: Nino Arobelidze
All instruments/samples (except bass): Nino Arobelidze
Bass: Pablo Gordy (ASCAP)
Mixed and mastered by The Laughing Man @ Laughing Man Studios Chicago.
Visit Nino's website.
Says Joshua: 'Fathoms Fade' is an improvised piece written and recorded over four continuous hours in my studio. Since 2008 I've been creating these types of long-form tracks with the goal of trying new techniques and using a different collection of instruments.
Visit Joshua Wentz's website.
For this inaugural episode we go into our archive for an August 2013 recording by Frankenstein Earphone Radio, aka Steven Fletcher. It was made for Transistor Radio.