The Fragmenti Remixes Project
Paris To Kyiv’s Fragmenti recording was originally released in 2005 and is arguably the ensemble’s most soul-baring work. A sonic tapestry of ancient Ukrainian song fragments and contemporary sounds, Fragmenti marked the group’s fourth recording and first international release for singer Alexis Kochan and her primary collaborators; bandurist and sopilka player Julian Kytasty and multi-instrumentalist Richard Moody.
Recorded in New York and Winnipeg, Fragmenti broke stereotypes and genres by marrying electric elements, meditative grooves and overtone singing to Kochan’s signature Ukrainian folk poetry. Neatly contrasting its title, Fragmenti is perhaps the most cohesive of all works from Paris To Kyiv. In a 2005 interview, Kochan said of the album, “For the first time in my work I feel that I’ve moved beyond the Ukrainian psyche to a universal one. All songs are comments on the human experience.”
Fast forward to 2009, Kochan meets with Balanced Records manager Adam Hannibal to discuss the possibility of a different kind of collaboration. Hannibal’s label, known for their electronic, urban and avant garde sounds, promises another unique meeting of musical worlds. Hannibal enlists a hearty crop of producers to reinterpret many of the works from the Fragmenti release and over the course of the next four years, these dual worlds come together drawing a complex web from their diverse musical strands. Fragmenti Remixes, is the lavish and layered result of that union.
After passing around some of the initial pre-mastered tracks of Fragmenti Remixes, the project began to gather significant momentum outside of the musical recordings into other artistic areas. It was from this, that a project larger in scope was then conceived. This web site, Fragmenti.ca celebrates the 2005 and 2016 recordings, and will connect its audiences to art makers from other disciplines who have expressed a strong bond to this work. The Fragmenti Remixes release will be followed by a series of unique events in 2016.
The musical topography in this collection is vast and mystifying and is a testament to the collection of artists who themselves occupy such distinct and differing musical backgrounds.
Ken Gregory http://www.cheapmeat.net
Winnipeg artist Ken Gregory has been working with DIY interface design, hardware hacking, audio, video, and computer programming for over 15 years. His creative performance and installation work has shown publicly in Winnipeg, other parts of Canada and many international media and sound arts festivals. Anything is part of Gregory’s palette, and by using cut-and-paste techniques, random juxtapositions, and careful manipulations, he crafts unique art works. These works are presented in the form of gallery installations, live performances, live radio broadcasts, and audio compact discs. A recent career highlight amongst others is the exhibition of wind coil sound flow, a large sound installation at San Jose’s City Hall Rotunda as part of the 2010 01SJ Biennial.
Miguel Graça www.prontomusique.ca
Montreal producer Miguel Graça has been turning heads for years with his unique production and Djing style. In 1991, he produced his first club hit: “There 4 U” by M.G. Feat. Stephenson. It was awarded the supreme sign of recognition from the scene at the time by being bootlegged in New York City. “There 4 U” charted heavily in the U.K. and played on regular rotation on Kiss 100 FM. Over the next 6 years Graça and legendary DJ/Producer Robert Ouimet, his production partner, shared a studio and ran Front Productions. They released many internationally acclaimed house tracks together and developed a solid following for their Red Light moniker. “Thankful” went on to win the 1994 JUNO Award for best original dance recording.
Miguel has released five full-length albums including a collaboration with Trevor Walker known as Cravo e Canela which is an exploration into dance and world music. His latest solo album “A New Dawn” released 2006 showcases Miguel’s vocal talents as he continues to wander through different musical spectrums. Since then Miguel has worked on various projects for Cirque du Soleil, Moment Factory / Nomads and The National Film Board of Canada.
In 2003, he founded Pronto Musique and in 2009 teamed up with Dominique Thibault aka DJ Mightykat to launch the new digital Pronto. With Miguel’s many talents he aims to create an artistic playground focusing on all aspects of audio and visual production and to share common interests with common minded people.
Trevor Walker (Lifeboogie) https://www.facebook.com/lifeboogie
Credited as the primary catalyst and pioneer of the soul jazz and house movement in Ottawa, Trevor has been involved in the industry for the last 15 years. Walker brings a surrealness to his sets that take listeners on a journey. Jazz remains the binding influence behind the music he plays, giving him the flexibility to incorporate and investigate different sounds in his sets.
A stalwart on the radio waves, Trevor continues his long running radio shows at both Ottawa and Carleton Universities. His extensive collection runs the gamut of the musical spectrum, connecting bossa to break beat and beyond. Walker’s ability to get a dance floor moving is in no doubt attributed to the fact that as a break dancer in the early part of his career – he knows what makes people move.
Anders Peterson (A.P) is a sound designer, composer and engineer. He runs the audio postproduction studio GS Mastering & Post, as well as a label called Ghost Sounds which explores the outer boundaries of ambience and abstract rhythms. Anders is based in Sollentuna, Sweden and in addition to remixing the track Harmoniques, he was the mastering engineer for the Fragmenti Remixes.
Joe Silva https://soundcloud.com/joesilva
Joe Silva has been producing his own brand of deep, tech-house tracks and remixes for over 15 years. In 1995 under the moniker X Nation, Silva released the first EP on his fledgling imprint Purespace Records. Later that year, his second EP Free Your Mind was making waves both locally and overseas, appearing on several high profile DJ tapes. The rare vinyl EP is still a sought out item today. Recently, Silva’s work has appeared on Tango, Thoughtless, Lunatic Jazz and Conya record labels. With successful past releases on labels like Viva!, Red Melon, Stickmen, Nordic Trax and Guesthouse, Joe Silva has become a well known name in house music. He is also one half of the tech-house duo Tonepushers. As a DJ, Joe has made appearances across North and South America and Australia and is a true house music veteran with years of experience behind the decks.
Downtempo, dub and funk master, Giorgos Bratanis aka Cayetano, released his first album with his group Stroggilo Kitrino in 1996, making waves in Greece and Italy. In 1999 he moved to Spain, composing music for theatre and film and gaining a reputation as a top keyboard and bass session musician with a number of leading Spanish artists. He returned to Greece in 2004, ready to beat a new path of his own. His 2006 album, Focused, brought him international recognition. Live appearances, film scores, awards and collaborations have followed and in 2011 he launched the Cayetano Live Band, a six-strong team merging drums, bass, sax and guitars with loops and keyboards which has quickly become a major attraction in Greece, regularly filling the dance-floors all over EU. Cayetano’s fifth album, Once Sometime, was released in 2012 with a follow up collection of remixes out in 2014.
Since 1995, Adam Hannibal has covered the spectrum of breakbeat and bass influenced music from drum & bass, downtempo, afrobeat, dub, broken beat and future bass styles. Kasm’s sets are known to bind and adapt to different crowds and environments. As one of the original founders of Balanced and current label manager, Kasm has been integral to the label’s growth and identity both on the international stage and with cultivating artists from the flatlands. He also co-hosts Quadrafunk, Winnipeg’s longest running DJ show on CKUW which has been on the airwaves since 1999.
Adam played an integral role to the production and creative direction in the Fragmenti Remixes project by hand picking the remixers and consulting on the creative vision for the release.
Rise Ashen http://balanced-records.com/artists/rise-ashen
Producer, Musician, DJ and Dancer Rise Ashen has devoted his life to the study of sound and movement. From his early years as a B-boy in Montreal in the 80s, to his studies at Fanshawe College (North America’s Oldest Recording School) and the Banff Centre for the Arts, his focus has been on applying hi-fi know-how to underground music. He has remixed or collaborated with Brazil’s Bebel Gilberto, American jazz legend Duke Ellington, San Francisco based Bombay Dub Orchestra and Fred Everything, Mali’s Issa Bagayogo, Montreal Juno award winner Miguel Graca, Toronto based Ammoye, Version XCursion, LAL, Eccodek, King Sunshine, the New Deal and Bageshree, UK’s Sean Escofferey, John Beltran, Steph Lefrancois and Josef Malik, New York’s Angel Moraes, Ottawa Algonquin singer Flying Down Thunder and Disco Daddy Trevor “Lifeboogie” Walker, Oni The Haitian Sensation among others. He has shared the stage with such varied greats as K’Naan, The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble, Kid Koala and Jully Black among others.
You can check out his releases on Afroart, Gotsoul, Dub Fu and Defected to name a few, his mixed series Deepworld on the Balanced website and a few CBC radio shows called A NU JAZZ ORDER. He believes music and dance are essential to human culture and that united, artists can lead humanity towards a more enlightened way of living. “We need to make a shift towards long-term thinking”… Quoting Fela Kuti:”when the higher forces give you the gift of musicianship …it must be well used for the good of humanity”
A Long Island/Brooklyn native, J57 brings styles upon styles to his unique brand of production. He infuses his beats with hiphop, pop, soul, glitch, and countless other influences with a masterful ear and unerring drive. Currently mentored by the legendary DJ Premier, J57 is one of the most sought-after beat-smiths in indie hip hop, worldwide. He met his group, Brown Bag AllStars, while he was moonlighting at the hiphop mecca, Fat Beats Records, where he also linked up with Stones Throw Records artist/frequent collaborator, Homeboy Sandman. While he is quickly accumulating renown in the indie hip hop realm, he is also versatile enough to put it down heavy on the instrumental music tip. Check out his full length release Digital Society as well as his newer EP Landmines on Balanced Records.
Solidaze, the primary recording and production pseudonym for Luis Francisco Cardona, embraces urban beats and natural rhythms in both his house and downtempo journeys. Always infused with deep soul and a muted electro sensibility his work resonates with even the most discerning listener. His production and engineering can be found throughout the early releases of the Balanced catalogue as an artist as well as in the final mastering stage. In 2006, Solidaze released the long awaited full length Pleasure from Precision, featuring the vocals of Sarah Michaelson (aka Mama Cutsworth), followed up by a remix collection of this work.
Cardona moved from El Salvador to Winnipeg with his family when he was 10 years old. It was through this massive cultural change that his eyes were opened to contrasting worlds and their music. Co-founding Balanced Records in 2001, Cardona has established his legacy in Winnipeg’s DJ and electronic producer culture opting for less frequent, but highly sought after DJ sets to this day.