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Saturday 11 April 2020, 7.30pm

Photo by Dawid Laskowski

Black Top & Chris Corsano + Elvin Brandhi / Petronn Sphene

BUY A PASS FOR ALL four EVENTS IN THIS SERIES

"Mr. Corsano is a peripatetic ace of the avant-garde." – Nate Chinen, New York Times

Delighted to welcome the great Chris Corsano back to OTO for a three-day residency. One of the greatest drummers working today, Corsano has developed a percussive language of extraordinary amplitude and infinite resources. His collaborations stretch from free jazz greats (Joe McPhee, Paul Flaherty & more) to noise mavens (Bill Nace, C Spencer Yeh etc) and pop superstars (Björk). Capable of generating narrative out of permanent ecstasy, Corsano never ceases to be profoundly affirmative and imposing of his language, and being an absolute and charismatic virtuoso, he simultaneously is one of the most noble and generous improvisers of the few last decades. 

"Corsano, as ever, is a joy to hear - it goes without saying that he has carved out a name for himself as one of the greatest improvisational drummers." - Derek Stone, Free Jazz Blog

Chris Corsano

"...seriously one of the most exciting drummers on the planet." -Adam Richards, indieworkshop.com

Chris Corsano (b. 1975, USA) is an upstate NY-based drummer who has been active at the intersections of collective improvisation, free jazz, avant-rock, and noise music since the late 1990's. He began a long-standing, high-energy musical partnership with saxophonist Paul Flaherty in 1998. Their style, which they occasionally refer to with (semi-)tongue-in-cheek humor as "The Hated Music", combines modern free-jazz's ecstatic collectivist spirit and the urgency and intensity of hardcore punk.

A move from western Massachusetts to the UK in 2005 led Corsano to develop his solo music--a dynamic, spontaneously-composed amalgam of extended techniques for drum set and non-percussive instruments of his own making: e.g. bowed violin strings stretched across drum heads, modified reed instruments, and stockpiles of resonant metal. In February 2006, Corsano released his first solo recording, The Young Cricketer, and toured extensively throughout Europe, USA, Australia, and Japan. He spent 2007 and '08 as the drummer on Björk's Volta world tour, all the while weaving in shows and recordings on his days off with the likes of Evan Parker, Virginia Genta, C. Spencer Yeh, and Jandek.

Moving back to the U.S. in 2009, Corsano returned focus to his own projects, including a duo with Michael Flower, Vampire Belt (with Bill Nace), Rangda (with Richard Bishop and Ben Chasny) and his solo work, further expanded in its use of contact microphones and synthesizers. In 2017, he received the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artist Award.

Corsano's dedication to collective improvisation has led to collaborations with many kindred spirits and his appearance on over 150 records and 1000 live performances. He's worked with, among others: Paul Dunmall (released by the label: ESP-Disk), Joe McPhee (Roaratorio), Okkyung Lee (Open Mouth), Mette Rasmussen (Hot Cars Warp Records & Clean Feed), John Edwards (OTOroku & Dancing Wayang), Sylvie Courvoisier (Relative Pitch), Nate Wooley (No Business & Astral Spirits), Jim O'Rourke & Akira Sakata (Drag City & Polystar), Merzbow (Family Vineyard), Jessica Rylan (Load Records), Nels Cline (Strange Attractors), Heather Leigh (Volcanic Tongue), Ghédalia Tazartès (Ultra Eczema), Ken Vandermark (Audiographic), and Sunburned Hand Of Man (Manhand).

Pat Thomas

Pat Thomas studied classical piano from aged 8 and started playing Jazz from the age of 16. He has since gone on to develop an utterly unique style - embracing improvisation, jazz and new music. He has played with Derek Bailey in Company Week (1990/91) and in the trio AND (with Noble) – with Tony Oxley’s Quartet and Celebration Orchestra and in Duo with Lol Coxhill. 

"Sartorially shabby as Thomas may be, and on first impression even rather stolid, he has a somewhat imperious charisma that’s immediately amplified when he starts to play. Unlike other pianists whose virtuosity seems to be racing ahead of their thought processes Thomas always seems supremely in command of his gift, and his playing, no matter how free and ready to tangle with abstraction, always carries a charge of authoritative exactitude." - The Jazzmann 

Orphy Robinson

Orphy Robinson is one of the major figures of the jazz scene - he has released records on Blue Note and played with Don Cherry, David Murray, Henry Threadgill, Courtney Pine, Jazz Warriors and Andy Shepherd. 

He has composed for Film and TV- including “In answer to your question” for the Balanescu String Quartet and “ 42 Shades of Black” for Phoenix Dance Theatre,which was performed at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. 

Currently leads the groups CODEFIVE- NUBIAN VIBES - he also plays in the groups BRUISE and CLEAR FRAME

"As the saxophonist and composer Wayne Shorter once famously remarked in a 1992 interview with Mel Martin, “The word ‘jazz’ means to me no category”. You would similarly search in vain for a pigeon hole in which to place Black Top #5. An evening of surpassing invention and ambition, there might be a more creative, more engaging and more inspiring gig at this year’s London Jazz Festival. But I somehow doubt it." - The Arts Desk

Elvin Brandhi

Elvin brandhi is an improvising lyricist, producer and sound artist from Bridgend, Wales making auto-tune blast beats from field recordings, tapes, instruments and voice. Live shows are unyielding bursts of erupting animation where her caustic stream of consciousness cavorts with restless, glitched out heaviness.

Her first E.P ‘Shelf life’ was released on ‘C.A.N.V.A.S’ in 2018. She one half of father / daughter noise-improv berserkers Yeah You who released on Alter, Slip, Opal, Psychik Dancehall and Good Food. She also performs in collaborations such as ‘Bad@Maths’ who also released on Slip, ‘INSIN’ who released their first E.P ‘Sadsun’ on Hizz, and unreleased projects such as ‘Gailvn Keiln’, ‘OCDC’ and ‘0n est Malade’.

https://canvas-index.bandcamp.com/album/shelf-life

Petronn Sphene

PETRONN SPHENE (the solo project from Xapheena aka Q.Q. Utslekk aka Urocerus Gigas of GUTTERSNIPE) is the singular manifestation of queer punk cyborg convulsing body music known as “No Wave Rave”. Deploying disrupted polyceleratrix rhythms via MPC1000 drumviolence in symbiosis with icy, futuristic synth flashes and alien femme fatale vokills, PETRONNE SPHENE induces a deranged state of hyper-mobile xenofeminist hysteria recalling ADHD manic episodes, acid flashbacks from speedcore parties and abduction on the dancefloor! Miss XQQU will have several new traxx prepared especially for the fest so prepare yourselves to submit to yet further psychotic results of the eminent Radical Queer Formula for Rhythm and Tonality applied to dance music structural paradigms!!

“Timeless sonic witchcraft connecting pagan eternal spirit with mind altering electronic music, adopting a “hard gaan” aesthetics with “The Drugs” as a communication method for altered ADHD full blast personal wisdom projected straight into the soul, transcendent intellectual intensity. Think psychedelic time warped gabber and power new age.” – Manuel Padding/CITY HANDS