Zerx Records & Press



Mark Weber comments: A. Barnhouse makes their brilliant debut on Zerx, actually just a taste, with 2 selections from a concert at the Outpost Performance Space during the Creative Soundspace Festival 2007.
But, first, whatNtheHell does "A. Barnhouse" mean, what is the name all about? I had to ask, I'm the producer. That's the producer's job. "So, you stuck a sock in the saxophone bell and stood on one leg, why?" (Note: A. Barnhouse isn't that weird) (that's something I saw John Zorn do in the mid-70s) (I've found that on the web a person should double-explain everything) (why am I whispering?) Anyway, Carlos Santistevan of A. Barnhouse give us these clues:

Definitions of A. Barnhouse:

  • place: origin of numerous non-vegetarian delights
  • name: An individual with a First name that starts with A and has a surname of Barnhouse (rare: 1 in 100000 families; popularity rank in the U.S.: #17056)
  • musical ensemble: the thing you do when you revert to your adolescence, never mind the mess


Four Poems from New York

Our good friend Klaus has done a beautiful job of posting the chapbook of " Four Poems from New York" over at his Metropolis site.

But now I'm ensconsed back on the hometurf, in my favorite cockpit of radio :



in the 1960s, the early 1960s
we had never heard backwards tape recordings
and it was fascinating

think of it: Baudelaire never heard
backwards tape

neither did Man Ray

the avant garde is about possibilities

the parameters of anything you do
always implies something
further out

i believe in the avant garde
to my avant friends
i'm probably conservative

i understand the value of forms
and structures and physical laws

to me
the most avant garde thing
that has ever happen'd in music
is: Alice Cooper playing golf --
i still have a hard time
wrapping my brain around
that one

--mark weber


Recording the "Zatoichi" way

I asked J.A.Deane to explain 2 things about his "blind swordsman" technique that is employed on his composition "Chain Letter." 1) What is the blind swordsman 2) How did you use it with "Chain Letter" which can be found on ALBUZERXQUEs Vol. 17 & 29 -- the piece is for bass flute (Dino) and cello (Katie Harlow).

-mark weber

The blind swordsman (like in the martial arts movies), is a technique I love to use when I'm creating a multi-track piece and using other musicians. the idea is to remove the person doing the overdub (or remove the sense of hearing), from some of the key elements of the piece. this is easy in a multitrack situation where people are adding parts after the people who played the first parts have left the studio. it's kind of like the childrens game where you whisper a story into your friends ear and they whisper it into the next ones ear and so on, until the story that comes back to the original person has mutated but retaines certain elements of the original.

This works very well with improvisation, and the results are always amazing, filled with musical responses that just would not happen if the people all played in the room together. always full of surprise, with a very low percent of un-usable material. a great multitrack technique that can be expanded on in many interesting variations.

In the case of "Chain Letter" i had katie in the studio to do several tracks of drones on cello for a play i was working on, and decided to make a little side piece with her.

1 - she listened to a mix of the drones (that she had played), and played a solo over them.
2 - she played a second solo only hearing the first solo with no drones
3 - she played a third solo only listening to the second solo
4 - later after she had left, i played a solo only listening to her third solo
5- i played a second solo only listening to her second solo
6- i played a third solo only listening to my two solos

The drone tracks which were part of another project were removed altogether and I now had 3 cellos and 3 bass flutes to work with. I think that I ended up with 5 mixs that I liked. just going through and trying the different combinations of duos trios a quartet and the sextet

There is a clear connection between all the parts but there is also a removed quality at the same time. just like the blind swordsman who must connect with his opponent without the use of his eyes.....removed yet connected.