The new Cosmic Crossings concerts are a series of electronic music events being held at locations throughout the Central New Jersey area. Each concert showcases live performances by electronic musicians and bands from all over the world, playing ambient, experimental, and space music, accompanied by unique lighting and multimedia visual effects.
The 2017 Cosmic Crossings concerts will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing (aka UUCWC) and at the Dorothea Dix Unitarian Universalist Community Church. Tickets for each show are $10, with all proceeds to benefit the UUCWC or DDIXUU, which has kindly provided the venues for the series.
June 17th The Melting Transistor
@ Unitartian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing
The Melting Transistor are a trio of musical improvisers
that incorporate numerous musical and electronic devices to produce continually
evolving soundscapes that travel through many sonic realms. The group consists
of Juan Garces and Floyd Bledsoe on synthesizers and keyboards and Karl Fury on
stringed instruments and synthesizers. All three have incorporated diverse
electronics and laptop computers to expand their audio horizons. The band's
music contains various elements including calming ambient textures, deep bass
grooves, spacey synth sections, diverse guitar stylings, solid percussion loops
and an overall unified harmony of differing elements to produce a unique
listening experience. The band has performed live on WPRB Princeton's Music
With Space radio show, The Event Horizon series at the Rotunda in Philadelphia,
at The Electro-Muse Festival in Huguenott, NY, WLFR Stockton University's
Digital Dreams radio show and at the Picnic for Universal Peace in Plainsboro,
NJ. Juan Garces is an experimental and improvisational musician and electronics
and synthesizer enthusiast who utlilizes vintage and contemporary electronics
to create his music. He continually seeks ways to incorporate electronic
sounds, textures, and beats to take the listener on an imaginative auditory
journey. He uses synthesizers, sequencers, live looping, and a laptop computer
to create his audio magic. He has played live solo and band shows on WPRB
Princeton radio, Borders Books, John & Peter’s in New Hope, PA, as well as
the Trenton Area Electronics Arts Festival and the New Jersey Electronic Arts
Festival, both at The Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ. He was also
involved in the planning and setup of the Trenton Area Electronic Arts Festival,
and the planning and setup of The New Jersey Electronic Arts Festival for 3
consecutive years. He continues to pursue his solo playing, and experimenting
with new technologies with like-minded audio scientists. Floyd Bledsoe is an
electronic musician from Trenton, New Jersey. A completely selftaught artist,
Floyd started his musical journey as a bass guitar player and played with
several punk/alternative bands in the late 80s/early 90s. Having developed an
interest for electronic music at a young age, he bought his first synthesizer
in 1984 and from then on was addicted to creating unusual sounds. Starting
around the year 2000, he served as the manager of the artist directory, record
reviews section and moderator for the Progressive Ears music forum/website and
has a vast knowledge of obscure progressive rock and avant-garde music. In
2012, he and Juan Garces began a collaboration that would eventually become The
Melting Transistor. Karl Fury is a multi-instrumentalist and composer from
Pennington, New Jersey. His musical background ranges from rock and blues to
jazz-rock, world music, ambient, acoustic and free improvisation. He has
performed at numerous venues including the Trenton Avant Garde Festival,
Artworks and The Mill Hill Theatre in Trenton, NJ, Columbia University and
Princeton University and live radio broadcasts from WPRB, WTSR and WDVR. He
performed and recorded for several years in the world music duo Near East. In
addition to performing and recording with the Melting Transistor Karl also
pursues a solo performing and recording career. Recordings and videos from The
Melting Transistor can be found on bandcamp, soundcloud and youtube or go to
their official website.
September 2nd - Guitar Pilots
@ Unitartian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing
is the new spacemusic duo featuring guitarists Art Cohen and Scott Watkins.
Their music features lengthy structured improvisational pieces which transport
the listener to the depths of space, all the while focusing on each precious
unfolding moment. Cohen's
sequencer-like echoing guitar figures provide rhythmic propulsion, while
Watkins' breathing chords and sub-octave rumblings build a foundation for both
musicians to rise in melodic flights. Singing glissando blends seamlessly with
plucks, twangs and blasts of an interstellar beam. Following the trail blazed
by Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, and the Berlin School, Guitar Pilots
carve out their own unique sonic territory that is both organic as the ground
underneath and as far-reaching as a distant pulsar* copied from Stars End.
May 27th - Ombient (with special guest Chuck van Zyl) and Karl Fury
@ Unitartian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing
Ombient is the moniker under which Mike Hunter performs his ambient/drone/experimental music.His ambient/drone/electronic music, being of a live and improvisational nature, is representative of the feeling of the moment in which it is performed and of the subtle feedback between the audience and the performer. Ombient users various vintage and contemporary analog synthesizers, a large Synthesizers.com Modular, and occasionally computers running Ableton Live with various synth plug-in's. Most of the older music of Ombient features 6 string guitar and/or 12 string Warr Touch Guitar which is processed and layered using digital looping equipment. Mike is also the host of the radio show Music With Space on WPRB 103.3 FM out of Princeton, NJ
Mike will be joined by multi-instrumentalist, Chuck van Zyl, who isest known as host of Stars End (WXPN's renowned radio program of spacemusic dreamscapes) and as coordinator of The Gatherings (Philadelphia's premiere concert series of innovative music), Chuck van Zyl has also been making his own unique style of electronic music since 1983. Over the course of his musical existence Chuck van Zyl has developed a signature exploratory style. By blending the primitive machine beauty of classics like "Ricochet" with the highly formed values of more recent groups such as Redshift and Arc, his solo studio works are the result of a persistent creativity.
Karl Fury is a multi-instrumentalist and composer from central New Jersey. His musical background ranges from rock and blues to jazz-rock, world music, ambient, electronic
and free improvisation. He has performed at numerous venues including the Trenton Avant Garde Festival, Artworks and The Mill Hill Theatre in Trenton, NJ, Columbia University and Princeton University and live radio broadcasts from WPRB, WTSR , WDVR and WLFR. He performed and recorded for several years in the world music duo Near East. He continues to collaborate and record with Dr. Brad Garton, head of the Columbia University Computer Music Center in New York City and The Melting Transistor, an improvisational electronic music trio that includes Juan Garces and Floyd Bledsoe. The Melting Transistor have performed at several Electro-Music festivals in New York state, the Event Horizon concert series in Philadelphia, and on WPRB's Music With Space and WLFR's Digital Dreams. Karl also continues to record and perform solo instrumental music.
April 15th - The Time Merchant & George Wallace
@ Unitartian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing
The Time Merchant - With over 50 albums, the ever prolific Time Merchant is on a constant quest to explore sound. The first album appeared in 1994. Little else is known as The Time Merchant tends to keep out of the public eye, preferring instead to hide away in the recording studio (the wave chamber), working methodically to create the next sound world. Works have explored several genres, including: experimental, dark ambient, atmospheric. pure electronic, and various combinations.
George Wallace has redefined the meaning of career musician. His decades-long career has included the release of no fewer
than thirteen full-length albums, in addition to holding a staff-writer position with Screen Gems and a label affiliation with CBS/Epic Records. He has also produced several planetarium show soundtracks and a critically acclaimed three-album set of exercise music for children, and enjoyed a long history of live performance and airplay on numerous spacemusic radio programs.
Although rumored by some to be from another planet (there is no actual proof of this), George was born-and-raised in Philadelphia in the ‘50’s and 60’s – just in time for the British invasion and the emergence of the Motown phenomenon - both of which, along with the ingenious production and vocal arrangements of the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, provided much early inspiration for his emerging talents as songwriter and producer.
In 1984, George formed and christened his own new studio and production company, AirBorn Music, which has been up-and-running ever since. With the emerging power of the Internet he was soon to discover new marketing possibilities, enabling him to promote and distribute his own catalog and eventually to set up the AirBorn website. Out of these developments emerged his three early landmark works Sacred Earth (1985), Communion (1988), and Frontiers (1993).
George has more recently produced Soul Ascending (2013) and Light Music (2015), both featuring his trademark styles of ambient, tribal, contemplative and spacemusic. He continues to be a featured artist on many radio and internet radio programs – both local and nationally syndicated.
George currently lives with his wife-and-best-friend in Lancaster, PA, with lots of farm country nearby. In his in-home studio he has built a portfolio of compositions produced for film and television and has recently released a new live double-CD album, 'Live From Planet Earth'.
When he does manage to break away from his musical universe, Jordy enjoys travel, camping, cycling, photography, inventing new recipes, and astronomy. Astronomy is of particular interest because he is, as ever, on a quest to find out which planet he might actually be from…perhaps the rumors are true after all.
March 25th - Kip Rosser and Twyndyllyngs
@ Unitartian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing
Twyndyllyngs are an electronic music chamber ensemble using high tech devices to make Spacemusic that is suitable for everything from planetarium presentations to deep
inner thought explorations. This duo consists of Howard Moscovitz and Bill Fox who have international reputations, having performed across North America and Europe, including at electro-music festivals, Ricochet Gatherings, and Different Skies. The band has played at the Allentown Art Museum and planetariums. Twyndyllyngs may be heard on the weekly internet broadcast, Chez Mosc, on electro-music Radio 1. http://radio.electro-music.com
Quote: "Twyndyllyngs is an electronic music duo made up of Bill Fox and Howard Moscovitz. Both are from the Allentown area of Pennsylvania and a big part of the Electro-Music online community. While each is a performer in a diversity of musical groups, their music together as Twyndyllyngs is quite distinctive. After years of playing together, Moscovitz and Fox have developed the ability to realize novel timbral based works in the live concert setting through a highly improvisational and intuitive process. Each performance is unique, with the arising pieces the result of a deep sonic exploration between the two."
Chuck van Zyl - Host of Stars End - http://starsend.org/twyndyllyngs.html
Friday, November 18th, 2016 (8pm) - Centrozoon and Nocturne Blue
The event will be held at Dorothea Dix Unitarian Universalist Community Church at 39 Park St, Bordentown, NJ 08505
centrozoon (sometimes incorrectly capitalized as Centrozoon) is a German electronic improvisational music group. The core members are Markus Reuter (Warr touch guitar, loops, programming) and Bernhard Wöstheinrich (synthesizers, electronic percussion, programming). The group's music is flexible and has altered from album to album, but frequently-used elements include ambient music, improvisation, electronica, progressive rock and IDM (intelligent dance music).
The group has also collaborated with King Crimson drummer Pat Mastelotto, engineer Bill Munyon and a variety of remixers.
centrozoon works with free-improvisational, free-tonal, microtonal soundscapes. Within the rich and dense layers of their music there are subtle rhythmic and tonal shifts taking place, detuning and retuning with each other to produce a colourful spectrum of musical themes. Bernhard Wöstheinrich (electronics) and Markus Reuter (touch guitar) have been working together since 1995, exploring electro-acoustic music by melting their sonic palettes. Their first release Blast stands as a work exposing just one of the many musical facets of centrozoon: a warm, passionate music suffused with a pulsating inner light.Nocturne Blue: Dutch Rall is a producer, director, cinematographer, editor and musician. He is a 3-time Emmy-winner whose work for PBS has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Dutch has traveled the world as the visual and musical director of a project for filmmaker David Lynch, has lectured for the National Press Photographers Association and was the winner of the World's Smallest Film Festival, the very first competition for video on mobile devices. Dutch has created official music videos for the Duran Duran art project TV Mania, shot Olympic televison campaigns for Visa, and has produced experimental performance dance films such as 'Fifth Wall', with Guggenheim Fellow Omar Carrum. His work has been seen at numerous festivals including Cannes and SXSW and has been broadcast across the EU and US.
At the moment, he is conjuring bewildering sounds from his guitar in collaboration with a few of his childhood idols and childhood friends for a new audio/visual project focusing on movement and perception (what some might term a "band") called NOCTURNE BLUE.
Sunday, November 13th, 2016 (8pm) - Chuck van Zyl and PYXL8R (UUCWC)
The event will be held at Unitarian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing Church at 268 Washington Crossing Pennington Rd, Titusville, NJ 08560
Philadelphia area Space musician Chuck van Zyl, best known as host of STAR'S END (WXPN's renowned radio program of spacemusic dreamscapes) and as coordinator of The Gatherings (Philadelphia's premiere concert series of innovative music), Chuck van Zyl has also been making his own unique style of electronic music since 1983.
Over the course of his musical existence Chuck van Zyl has developed a signature exploratory style. By blending the primitive machine beauty of classics like "Ricochet" (1975) by Tangerine Dream with the highly formed values of more recent groups such as Redshift and Arc, his solo studio works are the result of a persistent creativity.
With a solid melodic invention, atmospheric modulations and heroic shifts in tonality, van Zyl masterfully realizes the fascinating patterns, riffs and pulses that dominate his live concerts. As the music forms, climbs and sustains, listeners are pulled into a highly distinctive mindscape. Tone patterns weave and collide as go-for-broke keyboard lead lines dance high above - all the while blissed-out synthetic strings and Mellotron choirs draw long lines across a cool digital plane.
Chuck van Zyl is completely at home in this endlessly inventive genre, offering ample muscle for the adventurous, archaic modulations for the experimentalist and dreamy floating space for the cloudwalker.
PYXL8R is the ongoing solo project of Brainstatik keyboardist Ken Palmer. Atmospheric, otherworldly, and always dense with unusual sonic textures, PYXL8R's long-form synthesizer compositions are always performed completely live, with no backing tracks. To help achieve all of this on stage, Ken has enlisted the help of his son Kyle on synths and iPad, and his daughter Sage on synths, theremin and violin. His wife Ruth controls the lighting and video projections that accompany each piece of music, so this truly has become a family venture. They even joke about billing themselves as an ambient electronic Partridge Family for the 21st century!
Along with some older favorites, PYXL8R will debut a few brand-new compositions during their Cosmic Crossings performance. A collection of more than fifty PYXL8R songs can be listened to and downloaded for free on Soundcloud.
Saturday, October 22th, 2016 (8pm) - Kip Rosser and Electric Diamond
The event was held at Dorothea Dix Unitarian Universalist Community Church at 39 Park St, Bordentown, NJ 08505Kip Rosser:For twenty years, Kip Rosser’s solo performances, staged productions, award-winning compositions and industry recognition have earned him a reputation as one of the most accomplished thereminists in the country. Rosser typically moves beyond a standard recital format, making for a unique event that combines music (ranging from classical to jazz to popular) with stories and performance art, continually pushing the boundaries of what the theremin can play and do. His programs for special events are tailored specifically to suit occasion and client musical preferences. In an academic setting, the programs are always age appropriate and the presentation specific to the class subject. Back in 1996, after a twenty-one year hiatus from serious musical study, Rosser crossed paths with the grandfather of all electronic instruments; he purchased a kit and built his first theremin. Previously, Kip graduated from Ithaca College with a BFA in Acting/Directing and was then the sole candidate accepted in the graduate Directing program at Northwestern University. After receiving the MFA, he moved to New York City where he directed plays, worked as a playwright, as well as working as a graphic artist and copywriter.
Electric Diamond: Humanity has always been fascinated by the diamond: shimmering, multi-faceted and mesmerizing. That same description is more than apt when attempting to convey the impact of a performance by Electric Diamond. “Dispersion” is the term used to characterize a diamond’s colored light. The rainbow that should jump from a diamond is known as its “fire.” Although the official measurement of the fire can only be done by machine, the human eye can actually see and measure it. As for the fire jumping from Electric Diamond, 20th Century Music Magazine wrote: “a step beyond... A window into the future of music.” And Variety called it, “a wonderful trip into the asteroids...a fully symphonic piece of intense dignity and feeling.” At the heart of Electric Diamond’s fire are two extraordinary musicians, Don Slepian and Stuart Diamond. Their story spans forty years of composing, collaboration and performing together. Stuart Diamond is producer, composer, musician, writer, director, video artist, and journalist. He is also a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow and Trustee for The California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. His instrument? The EWI – short for Electronic Wind Instrument. The EWI is essentially a synthesizer that’s played like a woodwind, requiring expert embouchure and breath control. In Diamond’s hands, the EWI can imitate any traditional woodwind as well as “go stratospheric,” creating both raw and deeply ethereal sonic textures and “voices.”
Keyboard virtuoso, Don Slepian, has created his own descriptive mantra: “high technology, human touch.” During his career at Bell laboratories, he spent two years working with their most advanced digital synthesizer. A true pioneer in electronic music, he was a Synthesizer Soloist with the Honolulu Symphony. In addition to being presented by WNYC's “New Sounds” show in New York's Lincoln Center, he was selected by the French Ministry of Culture for a residency at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.
Together, Diamond and Slepian craft a seamless music experience that move “beyond sounds we explore. The actual sounds of our music are the outer coverings of deeper expressions, of the feelings, emotions...the sounds we explore are our vehicles to share what we discover with our audiences.”
Friday, September 16th, 2016 (8pm) - Modulator ESP, dRachEmUsiK and Onewayness (UUCWC)
Modulator ESP (aka Jez Creek) produces improvised experimental soundscapes using synthesizers, sampling, sequencing, looping and processing to create strange worlds of sound somewhere between '70s space music, noise, and dark ambient drone. He produces a fortnightly show at electro-music.com called Adventures In Sound. Jez is also a member of Astrogator, Cerberus and Quadra.
dRachEmUsiK is the solo project of award-winning musician, sound designer and producer Charles Shriner. dRachEmUsiK combines a plethora of nuanced techniques in order to create groovy and meditative soundscapes; giving structure to improvisation. This style manifests itself into an organic and natural composition of a free-flowing design, resulting in improvisations and structured pieces ranging from ambient to glitch-groove. Charles Shriner has been a full-time musician for over 40 years. During that time he has worked as an arranger, session player and instrumentalist, touring with numerous international performers, and has played on over 50 independent and major label recordings. He has been a guiding force in many projects, including The Genes, Mr. Presto, dRachEmUsiK and Faux Pas Quartet. Over time, he has produced artists in diverse genres including jazz, techno-industrial, classical, country, hip hop, and everything in-between. As a composer and sound designer, he has created the music and sound design for AMA award-winning world-class museum installations, art installations and planetarium shows, in addition to work for video games, film, video, dance troupes, and theater. Additionally, Charles is owner of MCSD Studio and NetLabel, and has created a series of workshops on free-form improvisation which incorporate his training and facilitation skills in Jungian based experiential emotional work.
Onewayness is Adam Holquist, a composer, improviser, and multi-instrumentalist from Erie, Pennsylvania. He uses guitars, pianos, analog and digital synthesis, spoken word and field recordings, and a variety of hardware and software tools to create atmospheric and textural music which draws influence from a variety of sources. These may include: ambient, drone, minimalism, post-rock, and vintage and contemporary electronic “listening music."
The Cosmic Crossing Concert Series is created, hosted and curated by Nick Mellis. You can contact Nick at nick (at) cosmiccrossing (dot) org for information about attendance and for consideration of artists who might want to perform as a part of the series.
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