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Z'EV - as/if/when

Format: LP
Label & Cat.Number: Sub Rosa SRV229
Release Year: 2010
Note: early recordings from Feb. 1978 & Feb. 1981 (Los Angeles Radio station & San Francisco at Savoy Tivoli), clear vinyl, lim. ed.
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €14.00

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"Stefan Joel Weisser aka Z'EV
(Sh'aul Z'ev bn Yakov bn Moshe bn Sha'ul)
composer, performer, percussionist, poet, b. 8 february 1951, Los Angeles, California
lives and Works in London

The Physical Vibrations of the Objects
his work with both text and sound has been influenced by the Middle Eastern mystical
system best known as Kabbalah, as well as - but not limited to - African, Afro-Caribbean
and Indonesian rhythms, musics and cultures. He has studied Ewe music, Balinese gamelan,
and Indian tala.
from 1959-65 he studied drumming with Arnie Frank, then Chuck Flores and then Art Anton
at Drum City in Van Nuys CA.
in 1963 he abandoned Judaism and began his life-long relationship
with World religions and esoteric systems.
1964 saw the beginning of his initial attempts at writing Poetry and explorations of both
Two and Three dimensional Artforms.
after studying at CalArts from 1969-70 with poets Emmett Williams and Michael S. Bell
and writer/critic Sue-Ellen Case, he began producing works using the name S. Weisser,
primarily concentrating on visual and sound poetries.
in 1975, he was included in the 'Second Generation' show at the Museum of Conceptual
Art in San Francisco.
in 1976 he moved from Los Angeles to the Bay Area, ending up with a storefront studio on
MacArthur Boulevard in Oakland, pretty much midway between the headquarters of the
Black Panther Party, (who dissolved that year), and the Hells Angels (still extant).
a primary reason for this move was his association with the San Francisco Alternative
exhibition space La Mamelle (run by Carl Loeffler and Nancy Evans.
in 1977 he presented his first solo percussion performance under the project title 'Sound
of Wind and Limb'.
in 1978 he began developing an idiosyncratic performance technique utilizing self-developed
instruments formed from industrial materials such as stainless steel, titanium, and PVC
critic John Buckley described his performances in this era:
the instruments are collections of objects ... strung together with ropes and swung at varying
speeds and directions to produce a fairly astonishing range of pitches and timbres. And the
moves the guy goes through to manipulate these instruments are, for grace and athleticism,
strong stuff. Z'EV is also interesting for the close correlation of visual and musical aspects,
since the physical vibrations of the objects you see are the same as those picked up by the
ears as sound. Also, since the rhythms of the work are dictated by the performer's every
and any movement, an inevitable integrity unifies the act.

he collaborates recently with John Duncan, Boyd Rice , Johanna Went, Oren Ambarchi,
Genesis P-Orridge, Hans Joachim Irmler / Faust, David Jackman / Organum, Francisco Lpez,
Stephen O'Malley, Charlemagne Palestine, Chris Watson, John Zorn, Konrad Becker, Lydia Lunch


tracklisting LP

side one
18 feb 1978
recorded at radio station kpfk, los angeles by carl stone

side two
12 feb 1982
recorded at savoy tivoli, san francisco by paul young
25'39" [label info]


"Its must be hardly a surprise, but I am a big fan of Z'EV, both the man and his work. Almost sixty years old now, and still going strong with his percussion and taped based music. He plays a variety of percussion based objects, but is perhaps best known as a man who plays metal and PVC objects. On this particular album, Z'EV dives in his archives and found two recordings, 'As' and 'If' from 1978 and 1982 respectively. He explores his objects in a musical a musical context. Its not that Z'EV bangs out a rhythm, like Neubauten or (the dreadful) Stomp, but explores the sonic qualities of his objects in a rhythmic context. Especially on 'If', things are pretty hypnotizing. The stainless steel and titanium rattle about, create immense overtones and make simply a great piece of music. 'As' is a more contemplative piece, working with spatial qualities of the sound and with silence in between. An excellent historical document." [Vital Weekly]