Jess Rowland | Scenes From The Silent Revolution

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Rock: Psychedelic Electronic: Experimental Moods: Type: Experimental
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Scenes From The Silent Revolution

by Jess Rowland

This one-of-a-kind 2-disc set features a CD of Jess' art-damage electronic music & songs plus a DVD of "found video sound sculptures" with improv based music compositions...
Genre: Rock: Psychedelic
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Om
4:18 $0.99
2. Bird Signs
4:31 $0.99
3. Invisible / Anymore
4:17 $0.99
4. I Was Only Dreaming
5:45 $0.99
5. Self-Adhesive Office Cubes
3:30 $0.99
6. Valis Interlude
1:33 $0.99
7. Signs
3:29 $0.99
8. Vendicam
4:43 $0.99
9. Happy Flowers
4:45 $0.99
10. Ashcroft vs. The Space Librarians (ACLU edit)
5:45 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
What if video was just another musical instrument to play with? In Jess Rowland's new release, Scenes from the Silent Revolution, we get an answer to that question. Jess takes found video of McDonald's children's video propaganda, Ashcroft "singing" his song "Let The Eagle Soar," Barbie promotional videos, and so much more pop culture tripe, then puts them through the improvisational blender to produce this DVD of "found video sound sculptures." Representing new approaches to the symbiosis of moving pictures and sound waves, these pieces have been performed live at arts spaces, new music venues, and movie theaters around San Francisco, and are now available for consumption in the comfort of your own home. This one-of-a-kind 2-disc set also features a CD of Jess' art-damage electronic music, and cover art by Chris Woods.

A self-taught musician and composer, Jess has performed in in a wide range of venues such as Cafe Du Nord (with her improv group Soundchaser), The Big Sur Experimental Music Festival (playing a baloney sandwich), and indie movie theaters (with her multimedia video pieces). Her collaborations with The Werepad and Dreamland Theater have produced her award-winning puppet-shows, live movie soundtracks, and musical plays. Her most-recent focus on multi-media projects, such as The Barbie Explosion, earned her a grant from The American Composers Forum for "John Ashcroft vs. The Space Librarians," and ultimately lead to the completion of Scenes From the Silent Revolution, her most recent release on Pax Recordings. She has also recently completed a new play for Dreamland Theater, and a score for modern dance troupe Shift's Summerfest Dance performance at Cowell Theater. Jess is currently putting together another band for new live experimental projects.



to write a review

Dolf Mulder, Vital Weekly

a critical stand against the politics and consumerism of the US
A few months ago Pax Recordings released an album of solo piano recordings by Jess Rowland, a self-taught musician and composer from the bay area. Recently the same label brought totally different aspects of Rowlands artistic activities to the light with the release of a new CD plus DVD. On the CD we have 10 nice songs that in a way bring the work of Annette Peacock and Robert Wyatt to my mind: songs more spoken then sung, in a refreshing low-fi electronic environment. Of course also on this new release she plays piano, but all kind of electronic and tape treatments clearly dominate the songs. If you neglect the electronic devices and gadgets that were used here, you hear songs and ballads that are of a timeless quality and have a very imaginative atmosphere of themselves. No videos are needed here.
The DVD contains three works: "McDonaldland is changing", "The Barbie Explosion", "Ashcroft vs. The Space Librarians". With music and noises more ambient then on the CD she improvises video sound sculptures. We see collages of b-movies, barbie-propaganda material, etc. In the last song on the cd and on the first work on the DVD we hear John Ashcroft singing "Let The Eagle Soar" on CNN, effectively embedded in the improvised music of Rowland. It is very obvious that with her work Rowland makes a critical stand against the politics and consumerism of the US (DM).

Federico Marongiu, Music Extreme

An album/DVD that is essential for any lover of experimental music and innovativ
This is a killer package that consists in one audio CD and a DVD full of the amazing compostions created by Jess Rowland. Here Rowland shows that his imagination in creating sounds and musical passages has no limit and that he can achieve great results with every instrument and also with vocals. The main thing here is that Rowland manages to experiment heavily while retaining coherence and creating enjoyable compositions where he delivers infinite sounds within a compositional structure that acts like sort of a content wall for the experimentation. It is amazing to see how Rowland plays with music and images in the DVD that for me is the climax of this musical package. He knows how to achieve different moods, from cray and maniatic improvisations to sad passages such as the ones in "Invisible / Anymore" or the feeling of sixties / seventies film music in the beginning of "I was only dreaming" that soon turns into a more mechanical tune due to the heavy use of electronics. An album/DVD that is essential for any lover of experimental music and innovative ideas.

Guy Montag, KFJC On-Line Reviews

intellectually haunting atmosphere and aurally surprising environment
San Francisco musical playwright, puppeteer, soundtrack composer, and experimental improv artist, Jess Rowland (formerly of Spork, and Soundchaser), demonstrates stimulating electronic weirdness with organic live instruments, including video footage. Rowland’s fascination with intrusive audio/visual pop culture & corporate propaganda led her to create these compositions. In her mind, these video recordings could be used & played as instruments along with her improvised experimental wanderings. Sometimes the music is soothing yet unstable. At other times, percussive jazz elements with soft melodically detached organ tones, eerie piano, and melancholy acoustic strumming come through. Electronic scratching, scrubbing, and synthetic samples play their role as well, with unsettling filtered vocals, minimal blurb pop rhythms, and transitory moods. While interesting on its own, these strictly audio renditions lack the visual component that Rowland incorporates during her live performance (briefly captured on the DVD). But her self titled, “found video and sound sculptures,” are a spectacular solo artistic expression. Thematically combining fantastic corporate imagery with surreal intonations provides an intellectually haunting atmosphere and aurally surprising environment. It’s also rewarding to know that Rowland is attempting a method of deprogramming without necessarily reprogramming your experience of sound, corporate culture and mass media.


Apocalypse Now for Crass Comercialism
Disturbing images, though not intended to be by those who originally made them, along with a unique musical interpretation of how those of us who see beyond the bullshit feel inside everytime a child succumbs to the ads intention.