Steve Parker is an artist, musician, and curator who creates communal, democratic work to examine history, systems, and behavior. His projects include elaborate civic rituals for humans, animals, and machines; listening sculptures modeled after obsolete surveillance tools; and cathartic transportation symphonies for operators of cars, pedicabs, and bicycles. He is the recipient of the 2018 Tito’s Art Prize, a Fulbright Fellowship, a Harrington Fellowship, the Best of Austin Award, and the Austin Critics’ Table Award.
For his set at NMASS2019 he will be joined by Louise Dam Eckardt Jensen (sax & voice) + Tom Blancarte (bass) from Denmark / NYC performing on invented instruments that invert the relationship between performer & musical instrument.
Louise Dam Eckardt Jensen (b. 1980) is a Danish-American saxophonist, vocalist and composer whose anti-authoritarian approach has led to her to a sort of bi-coastal career where she thrives simultaneously in the dense and claustrophobic environment of New York City and the idyll of the southern Danish countryside.
This duality finds its counterpart in her music: equal parts raw, unrelenting exploration of harsh noise and questing melodic forays. Not prone to sit on the sidelines, she tends to lead or co-lead her own ensembles. She recently formed a hellish saxophone quartet comprised of legendary Japanese noise saxophonist Tamio Shiraishi, tenor saxophonist Matt Nelson (Battle Trance, Premature Burial) and young alto play Chris Pitsiokos (Weasel Walter). She is also the leader of, vocalist and composer for Danish improvised no-wave band Sweet Banditry (featuring Brandon Seabrook & Kevin Shea), the co-leader of eerie post-apocalyptic improv duo The Home of Easy Credit with husband Tom Blancarte, as well as a member of various ad-hoc improvising groups, including the Gauntlet Quartet with Peter Evans, Dan Peck and Tom Blancarte.
She has toured extensively throughout the continental United States and Europe and has performed with musicians as diverse as Weasel Walter, Marc Ducret, Jim Black, Tim Dahl, Erica Dicker and Poul Dissing. She co-runs the Denmark-based label Marsken Records with husband Tom Blancarte.
For over a decade, Texan bassist Tom Blancarte has been contributing a vivid pallet of dark frequencies to New York’s creative music scene, both as a freelance performer as well as a member of bands such as the electro-acoustic jazz ensemble the Peter Evans Septet, the banjo-shred power trio Seabrook Power Plant, New Timbralist free jazz noise trio Totem, an eerie post-apocalyptic duo with wife Louise Dam Eckardt Jensen (The Home of Easy Credit), improv doom tuba trio The Gate and Danish post-punk improv quartet Sweet Banditry.
A native of the Texas Hill Country in Austin, Texas, his formative years included a steady diet of fantasy and sci-fi novels, comic books and video games, and later on a total immersion in death and black metal. Accordingly, Blancarte has cultivated a demented and visceral instrumental practice that transcends the experimental bass canon and pushes improvisatory art to new extremes. He has toured extensively throughout Europe and North America, playing venues that range from dingy squatted basements to international festivals.
Recently, he has begun to perform improvised solos on the bass as an exciting new area of exploration, started reacquainting himself with the euphonium (his first instrument), as well as starting the Denmark-based record label Marsken Records. He is on the faculty at the Music and Theater Folk School in Toftlund, Denmark. He lives in Toftlund with his wife and daughter.