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Conspicuous Capitalism at Work
Please pardon the spam. My CD has gotten another review. This time from my
old home town rag 800 miles away.
Santa Barbara Independent,
"Ted Killian is a nice enough fellow. Family man, mild-mannered,
in the manipulation of ones and zeroes, PDFs and digital delay loops.
who-knew-him-when as a local, and the graphic design point man at the
Duncan compound in Goleta, knew him as a kindly sort who was missed when
packed up the clan and moved to the friendlier real estate climes of
few years ago. And then there is his alter artistic ego, also kindly, but
also restless and wild. Killian is an electric guitar adventurer who may
finally get some of the attention he deserves, having finally released his
debut CD, Flux Aeterna, on the pfMENTUM label, run by his old friend and
comrade, Santa Barbaran new-jazz maestro, Jeff Kaiser (www.pfmentum.com).
A beautiful, raucous, and ethereal maze of sounds both physical and
and mostly conjured with guitars, Killian obviously ignored the advice of
anyone who might have suggested “don't try this at home.” What has
of his garage, and his brain, is a mutant DIY jewel. Experimental, yes.
Accessible, too, in the way that mad guitar playing in the post-Hendrix
has embedded itself in the collective ear.
Some may have caught Killian’s very occasional live appearances, in
Barbara and Ventura, in which he appeared entangled in wires and chains of
effects. To set up kinetic musical canvas situations, Killian would deploy
looping devices, including the mythical antique, the Electro-Harmonix
16-second digital delay unit, and sound-altering devices such as a ring
modulator and mondo-distortion pressed into the service of grace.
As heard on the opening track, “Hubble,” Killian doesn't spare the
solo guitar statements, the epic rock gesture that sounds loud no matter
volume you've dialed up. But often, those sweeping lines are laid atop
surprisingly delicate, layered backdrops, as on “Cauterant Baptism,”
languid distorto-toned musing drifting over “Recurvate Plaint.”
Medford” is an Oregonian-specific play on the song “Leaving
the vibe here is industrial and a touch foreboding, and a splinkety energy
bubbles beneath the textural demolition derby that is “Reverse Logic.”
But tenderness and subtlety hover about the proceedings, too. “Nocturnal
Interstices” is an ambient collage of soaring tones and happily elusive
structure. “Convocation Solitaire” is a sweet dream of a loop-happy
poem, somewhat reminiscent of Bill Frisell’s first album. The title cut
closes the album with its underwater-sounding arpeggios and unruly rock
phrases, all dressed up in feedback and tattered timbral garb. The nice
the artist, the looper, and the rock riffster walk into a bar . . . and a
For anyone wondering about the painterly expressive potential of the
guitar, this is one prime example. One hears influential strains of artful
gadget-tweakers David Torn and Robert Fripp here, but Killian is also onto
something that is uniquely his own. This is the work of an open-minded,
dogma-resistant experimentalist in a rock guitarphile’s body."
MP3s available at: http://artists.mp3s.com/artists/138/ted_killian.html
CDs for sale at: http://www.pfmentum.com/catalog.html