Sound of the Mountain with Tetuzi Akiyama and Toshimaru Nakamura with Holy Drone Travellers
There is a clear affinity amongst the members of this quartet for mixing acoustic and electric elements and extending the physical possibilities of their instruments. Montreal-based Sound of the Mountain (Elizabeth Millar, amplified clarinet & Craig Pedersen, amplified trumpet) met Japanese improvising musicians Tetuzi Akiyama (guitar) and Toshimaru Nakamura (no-input mixing board) in Tokyo in August 2017. Several concerts and a recording session at the legendary GOK studio in Kichijoji were the foundation for this collaborative effort in creating sound together, putting focus on the musical possibilities of form and interaction inherent in improvised music. In October 2019 they embark on a Canadian tour for the release of their recording amplified clarinet & trumpet, guitars, nimb on Mystery & Wonder Records. SOUND OF THE MOUNTAIN
“Should you be without any information and listening to this music, you could easily believe this is some electro-acoustic music; maybe of objects pushed around on a carpet, but then heavily amplified; very soft in volume but very powerful at the same time. This is some fascinating stuff.”
- Frans De Waard, Vital Weekly.
Montreal-based Sound of the Mountain (Elizabeth Millar & Craig Pedersen) plays amplified clarinet and trumpet. Since forming in 2015, they have played over 150 concerts together, developing a sound language that merges acoustic and electronic textures through amplification. They work with closely-mic’d instruments and minimal EQ, avoiding the use of effects pedals and loops, such that their constant physical attention drives their long-form music.
Active touring artists, they have played internationally in Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Mexico and Australia, and coast-to-coast throughout Canada. They have collaborated with numerous Canadian and international artists, most recently with Japanese improvising musicians Toshimaru Nakamura and Tetuzi Akiyama.
TETUZI AKIYAMA (guitars)
Tetuzi Akiyama specializes in creating music with elements of both primitivism and realism by connecting his own aspirations, in a minimal and straightforward way, to the special instrumental qualities of the guitar. Sometimes delicately and sometimes boldly, he controls sound volumes ranging from micro to macro, in an attempt to convert the body into an electronic entity.
Besides making variety of solo albums ranging from fingerpicking and slide acoustic guitar atonalism to noisy experimental drone to never-ending boogie, Akiyama has made many albums in collaboration with artists like Jozef Van Wissem, Jason Kahn, Michel Henritzi, Phantom Limb, Oren Ambarchi, Martin Ng and Alan Licht, just to name a few.
Akiyama has been frequently invited for international music festivals in Asia, East & West Europe, North & South America, Australia and New Zealand in recent years.
TOSHIMARU NAKAMURA (no-input mixing board)
His instrument is the no-input mixing board, which describes a way of using a standard mixing board as an electronic music instrument, producing sound without any external audio input. The use of the mixing board in this manner is not only innovative in the the sounds it can create but, more importantly, in the approach this method of working with the mixer demands. The unpredictability of the instrument requires an attitude of obedience and resignation to the system and the sounds it produces, bringing a high level of indeterminacy and surprise to the music. Nakamura pioneered this approach to the use of the mixing board in the mid-1990's and has since then appeared on over one hundred audio publications, including ten solo CDs.
He has performed throughout Europe, North America, Argentina, New Zealand, Australia, Korea, China, Singapore and Malaysia, performing and recording both as a soloist and in collaboration with numerous other musicians.
Sound of the Mountain acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts
HOLY DRONE TRAVELLERS
This Edmonton quartet has been making waves over the last few years, and hit a good stride this past summer, opening for The Comet Is Coming at Sled Island and issuing their debut LP on member Ethan Bokma's killer new label Saw-Whet Records. We're pleased to welcome back both Bokma (who recently performed a solo piece and as part of a Bug Incision mixed ad hoc ensembles evening) and Mustafa Rafiq (the group's newest addition) - both prolific multi-instrumentalists and central figures in Edmonton's creative music scenes - alongside Bhuyash Neupane and Matt Meeker, who round out the quartet.
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