Voices of Grain


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    Packaged in a jewel case, with artwork by the mighty tattooer/visionary artist Michael Aul!

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Genosong 15:21


With Voices of Grain, the New York-based collective improv/noise rock trio TOTEM> have constructed a dazzling follow-up to their 2008 debut for seminal experimental music label ESP-DiSK, Solar Forge. Their ESP-DiSK debut garnered rave reviews around the globe, topping year-end 'Best Of' lists at tastemakers The Wire, and Point of Departure, among many others. Voices of Grain makes for an unimpeachable, hearty, coruscating and enthusiastic follow-up, reestablishing this unit as a band operating at its full potential, at the forefront of the Downtown creative jazz community.

While the domain of creative improv often births fleeting collaborations and one-off ensembles, it is always refreshing to witness the lifecycle of a real band blossoming over the course of countless rehearsals and gigs, defying the economic odds and discarding the oft-perceived need for one single leader. TOTEM>'s new offering is absolutely the sum of its very potent parts.

Drummer Andrew Drury supplies a dazzling mix of extended techniques, stirring up waves of raucous energy, and directing the musical flow of the trio. Guitarist Bruce Eisenbeil's playing is always maddeningly articulate, alternately playing the role of melodicist and flayer of splintered atonality across the stereo field. Bassist Tom Blancarte provides shredding, rumbling harmonic counterpoint, and impeccable underpinning for the trio's cosmic gyrations.

On Voices of Grain, TOTEM> have outdone themselves, creating one of the most jaw-dropping sets of guitar trio improv yet committed to record... In the process, the band has expanded the lexicon of creative trio improvisation to include a bevy of mind-bending extended techniques for electric guitar, percussion, and upright bass.

The jacket sports beautiful artwork by renowned tattooer Michael Aul!

Don't sleep on this!

Press for TOTEM>'s Solar Forge (ESP-DiSK: 2008)
"...a prime example of how electric and acoustic instruments can be productive allies in avant-garde jazz... Definite compulsory listening." - Alex Henderson, All Music Guide

"As a bandleader, ensemble player and soloist, Eisenbeil has really emerged as a visionary leader in the NYC improvised music scene, especially in the last few years. He's earned a spot amongst Marc Ribot, Fred Frith, Henry Kaiser and Nels Cline as one of the premier avant garde guitarists out there today. Solar Forge makes a strong case for Bruce Eisenbeil to be included in that kind of company." - Pico

“Aesthetically restless trio” - Nate Chinen, NY Times

“Ruthlessly gritty” - Time Out NY

“TOTEM> plays with fire at the edge of musical comprehension and cohesion.” - Howard Mandel

“Solar Forge is an impressively intense guitar trio statement for the first decade of the 21st century.” - Robert Iannapollo, Signal To Noise

“Restored my faith in contemporary jazz.” - Brian Morton, Point Of Departure

“A new sonic language... a clear and well articulated vision... the sonic envelope of this trio is actually infinite, as it moves in a vertical manner and surges inside its loose contours... very impressive in its boldness, conviction and execution” - Eyal Hareuveni, All About Jazz


released July 31, 2013

Tom Blancarte - Bass
Andrew Drury - Drums
Bruce Eisenbeil - Guitar


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New Atlantis Records Yellow Springs, Ohio

New Atlantis Records is an independent record label documenting exceptional creative music, from avant jazz and free improvisation to vanguard rock music, and beyond. The ever-blossoming catalog features contributions from Elliott Sharp, William Hooker, Microwaves, Paul Dunmall, Blind Thorns, Dave McDonnell Group, Thollem McDonas + Sara Lund (Unwound), Hyrrokkin, Haitian Rail, Keir Neuringer, etc ... more

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