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Joe Talia

Joe Talia is an Australian drummer, composer and record producer/engineer based in Tokyo. He first established his reputation as a drummer in contemporary jazz and improvised music fields in which he is now active as a member of the ARIA award winning Andrea Keller Quartet and in numerous collaborative projects, including a long-term duo with Oren Ambarchi. In the last few years a great deal of his work as a drummer has taken place alongside outsider singer-songwriters (such as Ned Collette, Yuko Kono and Francis Plagne), in groups which synthesize his adventurous, exploratory drumming with the demands of song form. His longstanding musical partnership with Ned Collette has resulted in four records, on which Talia acts as both drummer and producer/engineer, most recently Networking in Purgatory (Bronze Rat 2013).

Talia also works in the realm of electro-acoustic composition and performance, working with reel-to-reel tape machines and other analogue devices. Following the release of his musique concrete suite in/exterior in 2006, he established a duo with composer James Rushford. Although the duo’s working methods and sound sources have changed radically between releases (and even performances), all of their work breathes the same peculiar air of lingering obsession and decayed virtuosity. Having worked with extended instrumental timbres and rapid-fire electro-acoustic techniques on previous releases, their most recent LP Manhunter (Kye 2013) develops a unique palette of submerged synthesizers, expiring drum machines and domestic detritus.

In addition to the collaborations above he has performed with Jim O'Rourke, Keiji Haino, Oren Ambarchi, Toshimaru Nakamura, Akira Sakata, Marco Fusinato, Tetuzi Akiyama, Richard Pinhas, John Duncan, Koichi Makigami, Eiko Ishibashi,Thembi Soddell, Anthea Caddy, Sean Baxter, Robbie Avenaim, David Shea, Rand and Holland, The Australian Art Orchestra among others.

As a studio engineer, producer and mixer he has worked on records for Oren Ambarchi, Stephen O’Malley, Keiji Haino, Jim O’Rourke, Fire! and many others.

Featured releases

Tint is the first new solo recording from Joe Talia in over a decade. Australian-born but now based in Tokyo, Talia is known to many listeners as a drummer (frequently collaborating both live and in the studio with artists such as Oren Ambarchi and Jim O’Rourke) and as a recording and mixing engineer responsible for dozens of releases across the fields of contemporary experimental music, wayward pop, and jazz. Alongside James Rushford, he is also responsible for one of the most legendary releases in the Kye records catalogue, the creaking electronic morass of Manhunter (2013). Lovingly crafted over many months in his tiny Tokyo studio, Tint is an album-length electroacoustic suite that brings together Talia’s expertise as percussionist, studio engineer, and performer on analogue electronic instruments (primarily modular synth and Revox tape machine). Ranging from minimalist austerity to kosmische lushness, Tint refreshingly refuses the dark and moody sonic palette of much contemporary electroacoustic music in favour of an airy, at times almost weightless sound-world of gliding tones, skittering percussion, and burbling field recordings. Drawing inspiration from Jean-Claude Eloy’s epic concrète love letter to Tokyo, Gaku-No-Michi, Talia makes extensive use of his own recordings of his new home, but removes any sense of audio verite, abstracting them into transparent glosses of outdoor ambience or unidentifiable chimes and creaks. Flowing seamlessly between distinct episodes, Tint is compositionally controlled while retaining a sense of played spontaneity, eventually building to a maelstrom of analogue synth zaps and tape manipulated percussion that reflects Talia’s deep engagement with the relentless yet constantly shifting dynamics of free jazz. Composed, recorded and mixed by Joe Talia. Tokyo and Melbourne 2016-2017. Cover photo by Joe Talia. Design by Stephen O'Malley. Mastered by Rashad Becker at D&M, Berlin Jan 2018

Joe Talia – Tint

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