The Kitchen Presents Greg Fox: The Gradual Progressions, 10/7

The Kitchen presents Greg Fox: The Gradual Progression, a performance by the Liturgy/Guardian Alien/Ex Eye/Zs percussionist celebrating his rhapsodic second solo album. On the acclaimed LP, Fox employs new methods of externalizing his polyrhythmic virtuosity into non-physical realms. The six extensive tracks of The Gradual Progression activate spiritual states through physical means, Fox's rigorous inner rhythms the mandalic vessel for unbound expression and arrangement. The performance of TGP is bolstered by scenography from artist Tauba Auerbach, who also made the album's cover, and accompaniment from various collaborators from the album. Experimental composers Laura Ortman and Michael Beharie will open for Fox, with cellist Teddy Rankin-Parker.

Adapting the intuitive gesture of action painting, and other responsive means of art-making, Fox develops a musical language on The Gradual Progression, constructed to isolate emotional and felt states. He achieves a heightened kineticism by using sensors attached to his drum kit that trigger tonal palettes-or virtual instruments invented for each piece-which the musician communes with in the post-Free Jazz manner. That is, locating and emphasizing states of universal resonance in solo and ensemble settings in place of demonstrating individual ability-musical aims reflecting canonized albums like Pharoah Sanders' Elevation, Don Cherry's Organic Music Society, and the works of master drummer Milford Graves. Additional layers and fits of sound are shot through the album by collaborators like Beharie, Curtis Santiago, saxophonist Maria Kim Grand, and PC Worship frontman Justin Frye.

Fox strives for a musical paradigm that focuses less on his drumming and more on its untapped potential as one element in a polyphonic unity. The dissolution of the self into a wider melodic abstraction signifies Fox's real artistic accomplishment in The Gradual Progression, rendering percussion's dark matter as an invisible but essential element between rhythm and life. The themes that inspired the deep spaces of TGP range from personal loss, to self-improvement, to artistic struggle.

For the Washington Post, Chris Richards vividly details the physical and emotional experience of Fox's performances: "His arms are pale, tattooed blurs. His unblinking eyes shoot all around the room. He's gulping down big lungfuls of air, as if drowning in deep space. It looks like agony up there, but it might be bliss." Fox himself attests to the drive towards catharsis in his live shows, saying, "To me, that's the most satisfying feeling in the world, whether it's from exercise or playing music. That feeling of exerting yourself - it's so vital." To see him live is to watch a person exert themselves so frenziedly as to shatter themselves into pure sound, and to feel that sound become rapture.

Greg Fox: The Gradual Progression will take place October 7 at 8pm. Tickets are $20 for the general public, and $15 for members; they can be purchased online at www.thekitchen.org; by phone at 212.255.5793 x11; or in person at The Kitchen (512 West 19th Street), Tuesdays - Saturdays, 2:00 - 6:00 P.M.


Album art by Tauba Auerbach.

Funding Credits

Music programs at The Kitchen are made possible with endowment support from Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust; annual grants from The Amphion Foundation, Inc., The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, Howard Gilman Foundation, and The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation; and in part by public funds from New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

About The Kitchen

The Kitchen is one of New York City's most forward-looking nonprofit spaces, showing innovative work by emerging and established artists across disciplines. Our programs range from dance, music, performance, and theater to video, film, and art, in addition to literary events, artists' talks, and lecture series. Since its inception in 1971, The Kitchen has been a powerful force in shaping the cultural landscape of this country, and has helped launch the careers of many artists who have gone on to worldwide prominence.


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