Extraordinary oboist and electronic music composer Kyle Bruckman visits to perform a solo work in quadrophonic sound and to play with Sarah Hughes (saxophone), Paul Neidhardt (drums), and Samuel Burt (bass clarinet).
Notes from the composer:
An Extruded Introversion for Blixa Bargeld (2016)
This is most recent of three pieces that arose together as attempts to re-integrate my practices of composing, improvising, and performing contemporary ‘concert music’ on the oboe, which I felt had been developing along separate paths for too long. I owe thanks to Tom Djll, whose invitation to contribute to a ‘solo + extensions’ night at Luggage Store Gallery, San Francisco, in 2015 provided a key catalyst. The other two panels of the triptych — A Spurious Autobiography for John Barth and A Fuzzy Monolith for James Turrell (2015) — were presented at Red Room precisely a year ago, on 10.11.16.
They all trouble themselves, in some way, with a fundamental crisis: how to transform a hermetic creative practice into an outward-facing product with sufficient payoff for anybodyelse – a thing in the world that can justify not only its own existence, but mine as an artist. Like all of life, a balancing act: between the megalomania of presuming anyone else should care about a public display of introspection, and the humility required in striving to ensure anyone could. Make it a solo composition – worse yet, exclusively for me to perform myself – and the screws tighten a couple more turns.
Discovering Einstürzende Neubauten as a 14-year old marked a sort of aesthetic Year Zero for me. I could gush about all that the band meant to me at the time; what seems relevant here, though, begins with their self-immolating front man as model of “the performative body,” his physicality an undeniably central component of his music. Another dimension involves the role I projected onto them as I began my own journey of navigating overlapping worlds of classical music, contemporary art, and rock & roll’s more bastard offspring. I concluded years ago that they were the perfect heirs to German Romanticism – a logical, if grotesque, conclusion that linked them from the far side of the breaking point directly back to Weber’s Der Freischütz. I began this piece with the explicit intent of maintaining more ego-less poise and equanimity than I’ve yet achieved elsewhere – trying to contend in my own way with the gauntlet gently proffered by the Wandelweiser collective, another form of Germanic extremism entirely – in order to make something that’s unapologetically…well, beautiful. In the end, I can’t deny the ghosts I see poking through the rent fabric all the same: of the histrionic, and of The Sublime’s taunting brass ring.