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GERSH, GEOFF - These Predicaments

Format: CD
Label & Cat.Number: Deep Listening DL-CD-42
Release Year: 2009
Note: composer from New York creating really captivating, polyphonic spectral drones, melancholic & beautiful; based on guitar, zither, manipulated field recordings. To discover !!
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" 'These Predicaments' is the new CD by guitarist/composer Geoff Gersh and is his second solo release on the Deep Listening Institute label. Created for painter David Stoupakis’s solo exhibition at the Corey Helford Gallery in Los Angeles, CA, ‘These Predicaments’ draws on drones, ambient textures and slowly developing melodies to bring another dimension to David’s otherworldly paintings and draw the viewer deeper into them.
Geoff uses manipulated field recordings, reel-to-reel tape recordings, zither and electric guitar, sometimes bowed with metal files, to create sonic landscapes that evoke the emotions of David's paintings and take the listener on a melancholic sonic journey.

New York based composer/guitarist Geoff Gersh explores the sonic boundaries of the electric guitar with and without the aide of electronic devices and found objects to produce sounds one would normally not associate with the guitar. He uses this approach when composing ambient/textural soundscapes for choreographers, filmmakers and other collaborators.
Geoff has worked with choreographers Lawrence Goldhuber, Cynthia Oliver, Karen Graham, Anabella Lenzu, Robert La Fosse, Benoit-Swan Pouffer and has an ongoing collaboration with painter David Stoupakis.
In November 2009, Geoff was awarded a Swing Space grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council in NYC. During this residency he presented his composition ‘Memory In Night’, for 6 electric guitars bowed with metal files, in an old Wall St. bank vault 2 stories below street level. Also in November of 2009, Geoff performed with the German electro acoustic improvisation ensemble HKM+ at the Lodz Philharmonic in Lodz, Poland. In 2006, Geoff performed in Glenn Branca’s "SYMPHONY NO. 13 (HALLUCINATION CITY)" for 100 guitars that took place at Montclair State College in NJ. In 2009, he performed in Rhys Chatham’s “A Crimson Grail for 200 Electric Guitars” at Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park.
In 2005, he worked with composer Jonathan Bepler as a multi-instrumental performer for video artist Eve Sussman’s video-opera, The Rape of the Sabine Women, which premiered in NYC in February 2007. Geoff worked with Bepler again on artist Matthew Barney’s latest piece, Guardian of the Veil, which he performed in at Barney’s workspace in LIC, NY in 2007 and again in 2009 in Basel, Switzerland as part of Art Basel’s ‘Il Tempo del Postino’
Geoff has been playing the electric zither in the Off-Broadway show BLUE MAN GROUP since 1998. He has received grants from the American Music Center, Meet the Composer, SOS from NYFA, was awarded a New York Dance & Performance Award (Bessie) and received a Swing Space grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council in 2009." [label info]


"The music on this release was composed for a solo exhibition of painter David Stoupakis in Los Angeles by one Geoff Gersh. I never heard of him, although this is his second solo CD of Deep Listening Institute. Gersh is a composer and guitarist, but also uses field recordings, reel-to-reel tape recordings, zither and bowed metal files. Not that I could tell really from listening to the five pieces on this CD. It doesn't sound like that at all. The music is best described as isolationist music - although I think hardly anyone uses that these days anymore. Dark ambient drone, then? Well, why not. The sounds on this release are highly textured, transformed by using electronics perhaps, and the result is a beautiful, dense release that also a light tone it, like floating a few centimeters above the ground. An excellent release of fine, dark drone music. Music to fill your environment with in a very peaceful manner, like great ambient music should do. The real thing, a textbook release. Some people (see elsewhere) should take note of such things." [FdW, Vital Weekly]