Oakland art rock band Grex visits Kansas City to celebrate the release of the new album Electric Ghost Parade, joined by drummer, percussionist, and activist Marshall Trammell's Music Research Stratgies. This program features a range of original songs and improvisations, spotlighting both the Grex duo and a dialogic collaboration with Trammell.
$5-10 sliding scale
Music Research Strategies: https://mrtrammell.wixsite.com/archivissionism
More on Grex:
Grex, an art rock band based out of Oakland, California, is a collaboration between guitarist/vocalist Karl Evangelista, a Los Angeles native, and keyboardist/vocalist Rei Scampavia, originally from Arlington, Virginia. The band’s mission: to explore the meeting point between fun, delightfully strange songcraft and the dark outer reaches of experimental music. The group has been called “an otherworldly experience” (Eugene Weekly) and “true genre warping music” (KFJC), recalling the explosive energy of Jimi Hendrix, the dark power of the Pixies, and the whimsical weirdness of Deerhoof.
Grex is a biological term that refers to the aggregation of a multitude of tiny, amoeba-like creatures combining to create a superorganism. And Grex (the band) works the same way: two musicians who can function as one, the whole greater than the sum of its parts. The pair met in 2008 at Mills College during Karl’s studies under a roster of legendary musicians, including guitarist Fred Frith and Art Ensemble of Chicago member Roscoe Mitchell. Rei, who was a Biology major, moonlighted in electronic music, Javanese gamelan, and baroque performance. Meant to serve as a departure and relief from the rigor of academics, the band’s only rule at the outset was that no idea was off the table. Grex made its public debut at Karl’s thesis concert, and the duo’s naive ingenuity and aggressive rule-breaking rendered everything in its path austere by comparison.
Many years since its inception, the band has allied with a wide variety of artists in the realms of pop, rock, new music, jazz, and free improvisation, bridging communities even as the band’s mission has grown more refined. Grex’s creative derring-do has led to performances with the likes of Frith, Tony Levin (King Crimson), Kronos Quartet, Eddie Gale (Sun Ra, Cecil Taylor), Steve MacKay (the Stooges), Zeena Parkins, and Martin Bisi, and concerts at venues as diverse as The Great American Music Hall, the Switchboard Festival (SF), United States of Asian America Festival (SF), The Sonic Circuits Festival (DC), and Myra Melford’s New Frequencies Festival (SF).
Grex’s most recent album, entitled Electric Ghost Parade, is its magnum opus—an exhilarating, incendiary, and unpredictable paean to the epic psychedelic albums of the 1960’s, traversing the cutting edge of modern indie rock, noise, and free jazz.
More on Marshall Trammell:
Marshall Trammell celebrates the post-Max Roach continuum through his percussionist acuities and commitments to social justice organizing. He conducts his arts practice as a service to community interests beyond the limit of the stage. A mid-career, multidisciplinary, visionary artist keenly focused on investigating social practices, sense-making, and aesthetic technologies embedded in indigenous design principles and weaponizing culture, Trammell is an Improvisor & Music Research Strategist. Born in the early 1970’s, Trammell grew up marveling at the deep ridges the Ko’olau Mountain Range in Kaneohe, on Oahu, Hawai’i, experiencing the many narratives embedded in folkloric arts, crafts and complimentary tales. Today he performs research and political education internationally from a platform for embodied social justice vernacular, organizational strategy, & alternative infrastructure development. He is currently affilited with the Solidarity Research Center (LA), Coalition On Homelessness (SF), Black Organizing Project (Oakland) and East Side Arts Alliance (Oakland).
Mr. Trammell has performed with John Tchicai, Wadada Leo Smith, Pauline Oliveros, Joe McPhee, Roscoe Mitchell, India Cooke, Dohee Lee, Jon Jang, Francis Wong, Genny LIm, Danishta Rivero, Laura Ortman, Saul Williams, Dylan Carlson, Mama Tarika Lewis, Baba Tacuma KIng, Donald Robinson, Spirit, Akira Sakata, Lisa Harris, Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten, Hakon Kornstad, Marco Eneidi, Tatsuya Nakatani, Nava Dunkelman, Tongo Eisen-Martin, Ada Pinkston, Sheena Johnson, Jamal Moore, Luke Stewart, Thomas Stanley, David Murray & Kash Killion, Kade Twist, Nate Wooley, Jawwaad Taylor, Zachary James Watkins (Black Spirituals), Karl Evangelista, Andrea Ancina, Sharmi Basu, Amber McZeal, Tracy Hui & NIck Obando (Mutual Aid Project), Remi Alvarez & Itzam Cano, Chris Cogburn, Ben Goldberg, Mogauwane Mahloele, Jean-Louis Huhta, Yvonne Yen, Liu, Vijay Anderson, Philip Greenlief, David Boyce, Hafez Modirzadeh, Angela Wellman, Suzanne Thorpe, Ava Mendoza, Juan Garcia, and Merced Youth Drum Corps.
Festivals: all ears festival, Sonic Circuits, Sonic Transmission, High Zero, Mutatu Festival of Stories, Malcolm X Jazz Festival, Kazoo Festival, Guelph Jazz Festival and Colloquium, Soundwave Festival, Active Music Festival, KZSU 24HR Day of Noise, and Switchboard Music Festival.
Trammell was a student of Hafez Modirzadeh (SFSU), Pauline Oliveros (RPI), Tomie Hahn RPI), Pamela Z (SFSU), Lester Cobb, Pablo Soto Compoamor, and Baba Carlos Aldama. He was member of Homes Not Jails, Food Not Bombs, Empty the Shelters, Coalition On Homelessness, Critical Resistance, Data Center, Estacion Libre and number of ad hoc, self-organized, direct action formations. Currently, he is a member of Merced Youth Drum Corps and Solidarity Research Center (Los Angeles, CA), and remains affiliated with such organizations the East Side Arts Alliance, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, Oakland Public Conservatory, Leadership Excellence, and Prelinger Library.
After many years in the San Francisco Bay Area, Trammell is now based out of Kansas City, Missouri.