Andy Meyer | Kyle Farrell | Jenna Barvitski | The Giants of Gender | Edgetone Records

Andy Meyer – reeds | Kyle Farrell – vibraphone, percussion | Jenna Barvitski – violin, viola

All compositions by (the) giants of gender except tracks 02 and 04 by Kyle Farrell. All tracks recorded and mixed at zombie proof studios in cleveland, ohio on may 18-19 and october 5-6, 2007. Mastered by Jeff Dilorenzo. Artwork by Jim “Phil” Farrell.

Tracklist: 1. perennial plant [4:44] 2. go barefoot [7:59] 3. monogram [6:29] 4. a turtle lives in the waters [4:55] 5. melofy for the house [7:43] 6. soft times [11:35] 7. tyles liver in a warehouse complex [9:11] 8. as non-living [6:14]

(the) giants of gender

an experimental trio that formed during the summer of 2006. They believe that improvisation is the purest form of music: it is the core of our musical aesthetic and didactical practices.

They examine the currents of postmodern musics available in mass media as it relates to their generation, the iGeneration. Born during the mid-to-late 1980s and early 1990s, the defining cultural-historical event to distinguish the group is that they spent their formative years in the age of the internet. Bombarded by this aspect of mass media, their senses have been saturated. The musicians of their generation have been exposed to a greater quantity of music than any previous generation. Young artists of prior generations looked to the underground, searching for voices with which they could identify. With the advent of the internet, however, there is no underground. Even the concept of obscurity is questionable given twenty-first century access to information about past and current artistic trends. Art and music have become easier to locate, and artists have a means to promote their work and ideas without corporate interests. How has this affected the improvising artists of the iGeneration? It has left a void. This issue is crucial to (the) g.o.g.

we are (the) giants of amalgams, amalgamations, anachronisms, and anomalies, but we are chiefly (the) giants of gender. unlike sex, which is a biological concept, gender is a social construct specifying the socially and culturally prescribed roles that men and women are to follow. a recent u.s. postal service publication, “women on stamps,” holds some interesting methodological possibilities.

A violent rejection of certain traditions has become an integral element of the trio’s music. They cross the border of genre and style within the context of combining composition and non-idiomatic improvisation woven throughout this debut project.


(the)giants of gender are an experimental / avant-garde trio

comprised of Andy Meyer (reeds), Kyle Farrell (vibraphone/percussion), and Jenna Barvitski (violin, viola), whose debut, self-titled album on EdgeTone Records is an almost unclassifiable amalgam of sounds and styles that is ultimately a very demanding and uneasy listen. Combining haunting classical arrangements with passages that touch on jazz, prog, avant-garde, and World music styles, the trio at times comes across like a head on collision between Oregon, Ornette Coleman, and Gentle Giant. Sort of….but not really. Despite the many moments of chaos and dissonant bombast, there are passages of tranquil beauty, like the gorgeous oboe and violin duet on the enchanting “a turtle lives in the waters”, and the emotional strains of “Soft Times”. Unfortunately, there’s not enough of that though, as the trio seems more inclined to crash and bash their way through this release. Listen to the furious assault of drums, violin, and sax cacophony during “Melody For the House”, or the monstrous waves of distorted sounds on “As Non Living”, for examples of just how avant-garde these three can take their music. For the most part, quite a bit of this debut seems anything but music, but like I mentioned earlier, there are enough moments of real beauty here to think that (the) giants of gender have only just begun, and we might see something really meaningful from them yet. – Pete Pardo, Sea of Tranquility

Their playing is populated by suggestions and vignettes that gradually develop into a fully realized concept which can sound galvanizing, or just a curiosity, but never fails to elicit interest in the listener. – Massimo Ricci, Touching Extremes

They activate the brain to breed dreams and sights…A natural stimulant remarkably effective in the case of a serious acoustic lack of appetite. – I mark Carcasi, Kathodik

The band sets forth on a course that is driven by unusual tone poems and unwieldy musical planes…Nonetheless, there’s a lot to chew on, thanks to active musical minds at work throughout this rather investigative and somewhat flirtatious program. – Glenn Astarita eJazzNews

 

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