From Jim Ryan's driving jazz to the terrorist-attack landscapes of C.J. Reaven Borosque, the four-night Edgetone New Music Summit unites artists who explore the edges between form and chaos, harmony and noise. Many of the Summit's jazz, new, and experimental musicians are members of Rent Romus' Edgetone Records collective (EdgetoneRecords.com), which provides the advantages of label identity, promotional support, and genre cross-pollination. Others hail from California's vast experimental community.
New this year is Saturday evening's Illuminated Corridor Project (IlluminatedCorridor.com) Curated by Suki O'Kane and cosponsored by the Port of Oakland's Bayennale art exhibition, the 9 p.m. indoor-outdoor Oakland event brings together cutting-edge and under-the-knife film and music in hitherto unforeseen ways. With Second Street's streetlights turned off between Broadway and Franklin, visitors to the free outdoor event will pass buildings and storefronts illuminated by assorted cinematic mediums, including Epic(Abridged)'s vintage Super 8 film digests. Nick Phelps' Sprocket Ensemble and other musicians will provide musical support for the collage of tens, if not hundreds, of film sources.
"We've brought together all the successful ingredients -- outstanding musicians, unique film, and an abundance of creative intent," O'Kane says. "Artists are showing up, hooking into AC power, and creating in the moment. My goal is to stay out of the way." Influenced by 21 Grand's Sarah Lockhart, who frequently explores the intersection of film and music, O'Kane expects groups that include Oaklandish (Oaklandish.org), one of whose spontaneous liberation drive-ins projected a Black Panther documentary on the side of the Alameda County Courthouse, and the Cinepimps, whose images receive dreamy, ambient musical support. Whore's images will be probably be awash in rock/post-rock sound, while the Sprockets offer everything from jazz and klezmer to chamber music.
For those naive enough to believe that heading indoors will provide a more controlled environment, the Oakland Metro will be filled with the sounds of the PornOrchestra, Tri-Cornered Tent Show, and Big City Orchestra. There will also be a drum corps, someone playing an amplified bicycle, and a gospel choir. For the finale, expect a guided improvisation conducted by Moe! Staiano, who transforms the PornOrchestra into a Moe!kestra. Attempts at explanation are futile. "It's fair to say that I don't know what will happen," O'Kane admits. "Obviously, we don't take ourselves too seriously if we're doing something to this scale. We're supposed to be having fun. And I think I am."
Friday night at 9 p.m. at 21 Grand features artists from the noise scene. According to impresario Romus, "It's less about the sound than about the catharsis." Sunday at 8 p.m., 21 Grand's program includes a blending of guitar, electronics, and assorted genres from the Bob Marsh/David Michalak Duo. Romus also eagerly anticipates Jason Robinson, a San Diego saxophonist whose music includes jazz and manipulated sound, and the Thollem/Rivera Duo's definitive jazz. "Thollem Mcdonas is someone to definitely keep an eye on," he enthuses. "In the jazz world, a lot of people feel that there are no more jazz giants in the younger generation. They go, 'Oh, Mingus, oh, Coltrane.' But I really think Thollem has something special that may make him remembered decades from now." Tickets are $12 at the door. Call venues for specific information.
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