First off, we have some scintillating photos for use in your esteemed publications.
Also, we have the ASM is the Future of Everything Press One Sheet and ASM is the Future of Everything Radio Track Information for you press types to download.
Now on to the lovefest:
NEW YORK PRESS
Volume 17, Issue 49
HOLIDAY SHOPPING Procrastinators and anti-commercialism die-hards, take heart! There are enough off-beat music performances lined up this weekend to distract even the most dedicated of gift buyers: Here's three to get you started.
... If you're a good decision-maker, Friday will be easier for you than me. I'll be starting out the night at the Flea Theatre to catch the first of the Anti-Social Music Collective's "ASM Sleeps Around" commissioning/collaboration projects. Their first installment will feature a "very serious orchestral interpretation" of work by indie hip-hop crew dälek.
The Collective tells me that when it comes to mixing musical genres, fear is the only dirty word. "In these troubled times of moral righteousness and sexual guilt, ASM is proud to announce our support for fornication, miscegenation and all the forbidden fruit which tastes all the sweeter." I can't decide if it's that kind of marketing or the merger of hip-hop and oboes that freaks me more, but we shall see. If you miss the show and it turns out to be the hipster happening of the year, fret not. Both the original dälek version and the ASM treatment will hit the streets on a split EP/vinyl next year.
Sunday, December 5, 2004
NOT YOUR OLD MAN'S CHAMBER ENSEMBLE
Polite, well-manicured listeners do not necessarily excite the performers of Anti-Social Music: The players who belong to this New York chamber music collective would be happy to receive them. It's just that all sorts of other people have a habit of showing up.
"After one show, there was one kid with a Mohawk and green hair telling me I was his hero," says Pat Muchmore, one of about a dozen or so musicians who form the core of ASM, which has been producing concerts since 2001. Muchmore, like his colleagues, enjoys the ironic humor that the phrase "anti-social music" inspires. He has a lot of fun implying that composers of contemporary classical music have much in common with that punk-rock teenager: They're both outcasts of a sort.
"We want to be the music you can tick off your parents with," Muchmore says. "You can't tick off your parents with rock and roll anymore. But put some contemporary chamber music on the CD changer and you can clear the room!"
Actually, ASM has been doing quite the opposite. The group has even secured a regular spot for its shows: the Flea Theater in TriBeCa. That's where it stages a Friday concert to show off a new commissioning series called (in typical wink-wink nudge-nudge fashion) "ASM Sleeps Around." It's the first event in a planned monthly residency that will find ASM collaborating with composers drawn from a wide range of nonclassical pockets. That's a route well-paved by ensembles such as the Kronos Quartet and the Bang on a Can All-Stars.
But as it marks its third anniversary, ASM aims to burn a little rubber of its own.
Muchmore is careful to distinguish the program. "There's a lot of people taking an existing piece of music and recording it, like string quartets doing Metallica," he says. But the notion of "ASM Sleeps Around" requires an original piece of music created specifically for the concert. The electronic trio dalek (pronounced "dialect") is first in line. Its untitled work, "a gorgeous minimalist piece," Muchmore says, deploys various effects to churn a bone-rattling bottom end.
One of the challenges faced by ASM to translate this sonic boom in a chamber-music context, using tuba, bass and bass clarinet. The ensemble also includes three pianos, four additional wind instruments and a string trio (dalek will join ASM in January for back-to-back performances of the piece).
Not every concert adheres to this agenda. Most feature original music written by ASM's members, and some occasions are chosen as a tribute to composers with whom the group has become smitten. This summer, ASM packed Tonic, a club on the Lower East Side, for an evening of music by Joe Maneri, a celebrated if not widely known Brooklyn-born composer whose work in both jazz and classical was decades ahead of its time.
Maneri's use of microtones scattered in increments across a self-invented scale tends to either scare off listeners or make them devoted fans. Perfect for ASM. "Some of us were even a little skeptical," Muchmore says, "and it completely surprised us."
"They did a wonderful job with a low budget, gathering quite an extensive group of people to learn my father's music in a very short time," says Mat Maneri, a Brooklyn-based violinist and composer who joined his father in a jazz trio performance after the Anti-Social tribute, which consisted of very modern classical pieces. "they were able to pull off the almost impossible."
These collaborations make sense, as ASM's members come from an unusual variety of musical backgrounds (only 60 percent are classically trained), with many doubling as performers in rap and underground rock acts whose fans follow them across the genre divide.
"When we look around the audience, we see people who may have come to the show because they heard the accordion player from the World Inferno Friendship Society [a cult punk-cabaret act] was playing in the group," Muchmore says. "And then they come back because they dig the hell out of it. We get a lot of people who come, [and] if you ask them who Webern was, they wouldn't know. I like that."
WHEN&WHERE Anti-Social Music performs Friday at 8 p.m. at the Flea Theater, 41 White St., Manhattan; $9.99. For more information visit www.antisocialmusic.com.
Steve Dollar is a freelance writer.
From Time Out New York
15 Sept 2005
Shunning the gilded concert hall, the Anti-Social Music collective has tackled the new-music concert scene with the DIY fury of punk. This anti-establishment stance is a consciously affected pose, but also a natural vent for a chamber ensemble whose members have particularly eclectic talents--jazz, bluegrass, klezmer, yodeling--most of which fall well outside the traditional conservatory skill set.
The groups's premiere-packed concert on Saturday 17  includes works by ASM regulars Peter Hess, Patrick Castillo and Andrea La Rose, as well as the unveiling of their second "ASM Sleeps Around" commission--a rubric under which they invite nonclassical pals to answer the question, what would you do if you had a chamber-music ensemble at your disposal?
Experimental art-rocker Warn Defever, of His Name Is Alive fame, has taken up the challenge with After Devil's Night, a piece of almost-spiritual minimalism inspired spcifically by Detroit's annual night of arson, and more generally by the fact that such a blighted city still manages to incubate exceptional art. Instead of a score and parts, Defever delivered a set of artfully decorated "spirit boxes" to ASM. Inside, he placed written instructions, rudimentary sketches of melodies and CDs of sonic material meant to guide and influence the performers as they interpret and shape the piece.
After five years on the scene, ASM is entering what you might call adolescence this season. For the energy they infuse into the art form, let's hope they never completely grow up.-Molly Sheridan
On the 10th of September 2005, ASM had the distinct pleasure of appearing on the penultimate show of Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar.
They said of us:
"A group we can hardly describe -- funny and personable and brilliant musicians playing live in Studio Z. There's never been so much laughter on K&D combined with so much diverse music."
Click here for an archive recording of the the entire 2-hour show. It's show #536 entitled "We're Against It."
Everyone loves us so damn much, we can't fit it all on one page. We didn't want to point it out, 'cause we're shy, but there are some more raves on the next page.