Ka Baird w Max Eilbacher: Vivification Exercises
The Kitchen, April 3 & 4, 2020
512 W 19th St, NYC, NY
For their first live collaboration, multi-instrumentalist and performer Ka Baird and intermedia artist Max Eilbacher join forces to create a multichannel exploration/deconstruction of the piano, the newest incarnation of Baird’s Vivification Exercises series. Baird is heralded for her raw, ecstatic, and boundary-pushing live solo performances, which often involve energetic and experimental body movements, vocal and mic techniques, and flute playing. Eilbacher’s practice draws on traditions of electroacoustic, musique concrète composition, and process-intensive computer music.
For this version of Vivification Exercises, the artists use a six-channel system to present a series of sonic exercises that activate listeners’ awareness through aural spatialization and physical exertion. Centering on The Kitchen’s Steinway piano, the performance also features the human voice and various electronic elements. Throughout the performance, Baird and Eilbacher find contact zones between viscerality and abstraction and ritual and hyperbole in order to generate ways of experiencing the physicality of sound in direct relation to a body. Organized by Matthew Lyons.
April 3–4, 8pm
$15 General / $10 Members
This event takes place at The Kitchen, 512 West 19th Street, New York, NY
"Respires" AVAILABLE NOW through RVNG Intl
Respires, the second solo album by Ka Baird, blurs the line between word and action, definition and possibility. Spirited yet restrained, bearing its wildly thrummed heart strings and inner calm alike, Respires ventures toward the unknown, charting the shifting ground of experimental music and the rewards born of risk.
Tapping the ecstatic energy and cathartic experience of Baird’s live sets, pushing the extremes of psychological and physical release, Respires represents an unquestionable leap for an artist already out on a limb. Largely written and recorded across the length of 2018, the eight pieces align as a series of visceral actions, captured, culled, and intricately shaped by Baird, then expanded with contributions from Zach Rowden (bass), Max Eilbacher and Andrew Fitzpatrick (synths), and Greg Fox (drums).
Respires was born from the intertwined etymologies of spirit and breath, the results of Baird’s singular approach to extended vocal technique and radical notions of “body music” which push her performances to uncompromising extremes. Channeling a raw energy from an internal depth, the genetics of Respires construct new bridges of communication, reaching across the perceptual boundaries of spiritual and physical.
Informed by indigenous, sacred flute music of New Guinea and vocal music of Burundi, Can, Maryanne Amacher, Don Cherry’s Organic Music Society, and Chaitanya Hari’s Kundalini Meditation Music, and driven by a fearless quest for musical discovery, Respires offers a glimpse into a sacred space of the musical avant-garde.
From the unusual folk music of Spires That In The Sunset Rise, to her many collaborative and solo efforts, Baird’s careful artistry and years of experimental exploration, placed in connection with the raw power unleashed by the body, lungs, and reeds, represents an intersection of possible futures on Respires. Tapping the primitive, immediate, unnameable, and fundamentally human, it’s an album which proves the impossibility of failure, when the risk of failure is embraced.
An answer - or continuation of - Joan la Barbara’s long standing indication of the voice as “original instrument,” Respires is spirit, movement, and an immersive life force manifested as sound. A sound in which the self is lost, and becomes something universal.