Bridges of Königsberg on SoundCloud

Some months back, I was invited to join Christopher Burns and Peter J. Woods in an abstract/noise/ambient experimental trio.  We performed once at the Borg Ward on National Avenue in Milwaukee last year.  Having had a really enjoyable time making noise together, we decided to organize a recording session at Kenilworth Square East (KSE).  The session was fruitful, and provided further encouragement to make more noise together; this time under the banner of Bridges of Königsberg.

Christopher put some blood, sweat and tears into taking our recordings to the next level… or one might say he simply executed some basic editing and mastering, either or.  So now “the band” has four tracks that will be released on cassette (that’s correct) during Peter’s US tour, and a BandCamp release to follow.  For the time being, here’s a sample that Peter put on his SoundCloud account.

If our ambient-noise inspires you, stop down at the Borg Ward on Sunday, May 4th for the live-action version of… Bridges of Königsberg!

Motion Blur Video

To feature the release of Misdemeanors, Minor Vices performed at Sugar Maple, one of Milwaukee’s most supportive venues for new music.  At the conclusion of Chris Burns’ welcome/introduction to the show, he tapped a “Publish” button on his phone, making Misdemeanors live to the general public.  Along with the featured studio release, Minor Vices performed Motion Blur, a structured improvisation from the mind of Chris Burns.

While the entire performance was not released on video, preserving the new audio release of MisdemeanorsMotion Blur is available on YouTube.

Minor Vices Studio Recording

Minor Vices has been performing for over a year now, and while we continue to grow as an improvisational group, we have become acutely aware that we have very little audio or video documentation.  Fortunately that changed this past summer, when we gathered at the Kenilworth Square East studio space to record “Misdemeanors”.

From BandCamp:

Misdemeanors is a set of twenty-six miniatures, one for each letter of the alphabet. Written by Christopher Burns for Minor Vices, each movement sets a particular challenge or puzzle for the ensemble, who improvise in response to the given constraints. The result is vivid and imaginative music, articulated through bright colors and sharp contrasts.

After some minimal post-production work by Christopher, the final recording was released to BandCamp in October 2013.  You can listen to, or download the entire release here:

Minor Vices – “Misdemeanors” on BandCamp

As an additional bonus, Kevin had a pretty sweet camera with him, and was “on the ball” enough to get some good shots and share them with us.

MiLO at Kenilworth Open Studios

UW-Milwaukee’s Peck School of the Arts hosts the Kenilworth Open Studios every spring, and it’s become a MiLO tradition to perform at the event.  My last post included some samples of our final rehearsal prior to the event, but being that MiLO was really on the ball, I have more material to share.  We managed to not only record the whole performance, we also have some video and a small photo shoot.  We’ve been playing together for about 6 years and amazingly, we don’t have any “band shots”, so this was kind of a big deal.  Crazy, I know.  With our grand sense of organization this time around, we had enough material for Christopher Burns, one of our founding members, to construct an internet home for our activities.  Thanks, Christopher!

In general, the event seemed a great success and we certainly enjoyed our part in it.  The new performance space on the sixth floor was absolutely wonderful, complete with stunning views of Lake Michigan.  We performed a number of improvisations, György Ligeti’s classic tape piece Artikulation and an improvisation conducted by Kevin Schlei’s Collision software.  Throughout the performance, many MiLO-ites used Kevin’s TC-11 Multi-Touch Synthesis iPad app.  If you haven’t seen it yet, I recommend checking it out here.

Here is the MiLO lineup for Kenilworth Open Studios:

Christopher Burns, electric guitar
David Collins, alto saxophone (with signal processing  via csGrain)
Nolan Dargiewicz, electric guitar and laptop
Adam Murphy, iPad
Elliot Patros, laptop
Kevin Schlei, iPad
Steve Schlei, iPad
Amanda Schoofs, voice and effects pedals

MiLO also has a new Soundcloud page with recordings for all the material from this performance.  Here’s one of the improvisations from later in the set.

I believe this might be a first (though I’m not entirely sure), but I have video footage to share.  I used my iPhone, which unfortunately ran out of storage space after about 20 minutes.  I ended up capturing the first improvisation in it’s entirety, but the camera cut out during the performance of Artikulation.  Here’s the Improvisation #1 I posted to my Vimeo page.