TILTED AXES (Experimental, New York City)

TILTED AXES

Combining the energy of rock, the creative discipline of theater, and the experimental spirit of the downtown NYC arts scene, Tilted Axes is both a processional event, and an ensemble of mobile electric guitarists created by composer/performer Patrick Grant.

Inspired by his background in gamelan music and vanguard theater work, classically-trained post-rocker Grant conceived of Tilted Axes in 2011 as part of Make Music Winter, an event which transforms New York’s cityscape with participatory musical parades in honor of the winter solstice. Tilted Axes was a way of untethering the electric guitar from both heavy stage amps and traditional band structures, as well as bringing live music directly to its audience.

The guitarists of Tilted Axes perform original compositions written specifically for the event by Grant as well as those from the Tilted repertoire, using portable amplifiers strapped to their sides as they walk through the city streets. The outdoor procession of musicians moves along predetermined routes in selected areas, in honor of an event, landmark, or organization unique to that community.

Since its inception, Tilted Axes has evolved as a project with multiple incarnations in New York, Detroit, and Düsseldorf, Germany. In 2015 the project will manifest itself in performances in the USA, Europe, and South America.

The musical pieces themselves, with their interlocking sections, make room for many kinds of genres and grooves. A democratic approach to interpretation allows the musicians – soloists, rhythm players, and percussionists – to shine in an ensemble of uncommon textural power. Flexible in number, Tilted Axes adapts itself to the environment or occasion, and feeds on the energy of a constantly shifting audience.

Tilted Axes cuts musical pathways through the urban landscape, turning neighborhoods into sonic narratives. As a form of street theater, the ensemble brings potent, ecstatic riffs, and an element of surprise, to an unsuspecting public. Tilted Axes is always in motion; striding in, rocking out, and moving on.

The process is simple: When a festival or other institution wishes to stage a Tilted Axes event, a call is put out to local guitarists to apply to participate. When an ensemble is selected from the applicants, they are given via MP3s and PDFs the music to be performed at the event so they can learn it in advance.

A week before the event, Grant arrives with members of Tilt Core (see below) and rehearses the local musicians in the various techniques of musical performance, improvisation, and staging that make up the procession itself.

A procession route within the host city is predetermined. The routes often include city squares, centers of transportation, and indoor structures like museums. The procession is accompanied by posters and placards which let the public know more about the event, sponsors, the hosting organization, and its purpose.

Above all: it rocks.

Follow TILTED AXES on:

http://www.tiltedaxes.com

https://tiltedaxes.bandcamp.com/releases

Facebook

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: