Pretty Gritty #1

Sunday February 24, 2013

strings & things

The inaugural Pretty Gritty features Christian Moraga's achingly sweet fuzz and rumble, the formidable Michaela Davies and her Involuntary Quartet of electro-stimulated sonic spasms as well as Raven's swirling hypnotic cello exploitations. And we welcome home to the Sydney scene Julian Knowles, master of the all manner of epic granulated intensifications.


Christian Moraga

Christian Moraga is a solo multi-instrumentalist from Sydney, Australia whose improvised music blends harmonic ambient drones with distorted noise washes, created via explorations and experiments of guitar synthesizer. The complexity of the overlapping sum-and-difference loops is one of constant transition and phasing, juxtaposing the traditional six strings of the guitar with the ever-futuristic manipulation of electronic synthesis. His background in electronics and hand-made instruments evokes music from a point-of-view of both sound designer and musician.

Michaela Davies

Michaela Davies creates sound using electric muscle stimulation to control performers’ limbs. By generating involuntary movement in performers, Michaela questions assumptions about the role of creative agency in musical performance. Michaela has used live percussion, sonified data and composed MIDI scores to control movement in performers. Underscoring the tension between control and freedom in performance, her work expresses the spirit and potential implications of Shoenberg’s statement “art is born not of 'I can' but of 'I must'” in a playfully expanded field.


Peter Hollo makes music as Raven, using looped and layered cello along with piano and laptop programming/processing. He is cellist in the acclaimed FourPlay String Quartet, indietronic trio Haunts (with members of Underlapper), and cross-genre improv ensemble Tangents (with Ollie Bown of Icarus, Adrian Lim-Klumpes and Shoeb Ahmad and Evan Dorrian of Spartak). His love of a broad range of music has led him to host the show Utility Fog on Sydney's FBi Radio for over 9 years.

Julian Knowles

Julian has been creating pretty, ambient electronic noise for 20 years as a solo artist and with the iconic field recording group, Social Interiors. His work crosses every musical boundary possible—experimental, post-rock, ambient, field —and is fuelled by destroyed analog media, guitars and laptops. In recent years, Julian’s music and audio/visual work has been curated into events and venues such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Experimental Intermedia in New York City; ICMC; impermanent audio; What is Music?; Now Now; Liquid Architecture; Australian Perspecta; Melbourne International Film Festival; Brisbane Festival and the Sydney Opera House. Also known as the mastermind behind Brisbane’s Gasworks Studios, Julian has been working as a producer with a range of Australia’s most interesting musicians including Ed Kuepper, Nimble Animal and radical electro-pop outfit, Gentlemen.