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Concert: Nathan Bowles Trio, Jax Deluca


Tuesday November 6th 8pm $10

Nathan Bowles Trio - Nathan Bowles (banjo), Casey Toll (double bass) and Rex McMurry (CAVE) on drums

Nathan Bowles is a multi-instrumental musician and teacher living in the Durham, North Carolina. His work, both as an accomplished solo artist and as a sought-after ensemble player, explores the rugged country between the poles of Appalachian old-time traditions and ecstatic, minimalist drone. Although his recent solo recordings prominently feature his virtuosic banjo, Bowles is also widely recognized as a masterful and versatile drummer, and he considers himself first and foremost a percussionist, with banjo as a natural extension of his percussive practice. 
He and his bandmates in the popular and critically acclaimed old-time group the Black Twig Pickers steep themselves in local traditions of Appalachian folk music and dance, very much a vital part of cultural life in their region of Virginia. As a member of the long-running improvisational drone outfit Pelt, Bowles focuses on the various sonic possibilities inherent in struck and bowed percussion—metal, wood, skin, or otherwise. When playing by his lonesome under his birthname, he prefers either minimal and hyper-nuanced percussive drone or tranced-out solo clawhammer banjo. He is currently developing and performing a trio manifestation of his music with Rex McMurry and Casey Toll. Bowles has also recorded, collaborated, and performed with, Jack Rose, Steve Gunn, Jake Xerxes Fussell, Black Dirt Oak, Rosali, Jenks Miller & Elysse Thebner Miller, Scott Verrastro, Joe Westerlund, Pigeons, Spiral Joy Band, Hiss Golden Messenger and others. 

On his playfully subversive fourth solo album Plainly Mistaken, Bowles extends his acclaimed banjo and percussion practice into the full-band realm for the first time, showcasing both delicate solo meditations and smoldering, swinging ensemble explorations featuring Casey Toll (Jake Xerxes Fussell, Mt. Moriah) on double bass and Rex McMurry (CAVE) on drums. As he considers the cycles of deceit and self-deception that shape both our personal and political lives, a mixed mood of melancholy and merriment permeates Bowles’s own compositions as well as the interpretive material, which draws from traditional Appalachian repertoires and the diverse songbooks of Julie Tippetts, Cousin Emmy, and Silver Apples.

Straddling Appalachian string band music and avant-garde composition but beholden to neither idiom, Nathan proves himself heir to deconstructivist tradition-bearers like Henry Flynt and Jack Rose.

Mixing a deep knowledge of regional folk traditions with a delight in modern composition, the banjo player and his exploratory new trio are delightfully suspended between earth and outer space … his best album to date—his most mystical and earthbound, all at once. – Stephen Deusner, Pitchfork

Jax Deluca - Audio-visual performance with voice, signal processing, and other tinkerings. One half of horror drone duo, Flat3arther$.