CIMA of PA Gatherings Graphic

Chuck van Zyl

plus

Fhloston Paradigm

(with King Britt & Pia Ercole)

Live at

The Gatherings Concert Series

Saturday 21 April 2018 8:00PM

St. Mary's Hamilton Village
3916 Locust Walk in Philadelphia, PA

Free Admission/Donations Accepted


Fhloston Paradigm (the innovative music project by King Britt w/Pia Ercole) and Spacemusician Chuck van Zyl are set to co-headline live within the remarkable setting of St. Mary's Hamilton Village on 21 April 2018 as part of The Gatherings Concert Series' annual free admission event

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Fhloston Paradigm

To intrepid travelers along the deep and dark spaceways, King Britt's innovative music project Fhloston Paradigm will put a hum in your ear drum.

With a gentle precision his music generates reassuring atmospheres of electrical synthesizer tones and digital textures. From a pervasive sense of calm, to a most potent magic, we journey through a rare sonic realm against the strong tug of some unseen charm - and wonder what strange spell has been cast? Progressing through spacey thought-zones, we seem to be on an excursion where every track is a detailed mind trip. Some notes are so deep your DNA will vibrate, while further in they are as light as cosmic cotton candy.

King Britt confirms that blending technology and music at this level can produce touching works - music as intimate as our own blood cells, with the structure and strength of just discovered alloys. Writing music for other people is just nuts and bolts. King Britt makes music for all of creation. Wrapped in the luminous glow of human consciousness, it is full of electronic poetry - as, with its focus on the electro-sonic, it contemplates new narratives of existence.

Fhloston Paradigm

With Fhloston Paradigm, King Britt is setting the beat for the thinking and feeling set. He proves himself to be a true thinker, amidst gearheads who tinker - in acts that prove, if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much space.

Pia Ercole While the rigors of Julliard and its prestigious training prepared Pia Ercole for the opera world, it also groomed her for the stage in another way entirely... After years of rigorous study she found that a great many other genres of music outside of classical still called to her. In working with Electronic Music luminary King Britt on Fhloston Paradigm, innovative vocalist Pia Ercole combines both her classical training in opera with her vast compositional and vocal sensibilities in a unique and beautiful way. In this project, Ercole has found a sonic landscape with the proper breadth and range to support and inspire (what she can only refer to as) her more "operatic voice". In this collaboration the music and moment direct every nuance of her phrasing and tone. What we hear when these two get together is their connection with an atmosphere - a sonic vibe. An exercise in listening, their sessions are a place of discovery - where even the most basic rhythm, repeated melodic motive, or drone is found to be an inspiration which draws out a unique expression from Ercole's interior world. Britt's music directs every nuance of Ercole's phrasing and tone - as the emerging vocals are born from connecting with a particular sonic vibe. Thus far Pia Ercole has embarked on several significant sonic journeys with King Britt - culminating in the auditory magic of the Fhloston Paradigm live and studio projects - a zone where voice, song, Electronic Music and analog synths meet - re-imagined in a beautiful, divine, and other-worldly aural plane. Pia Ercole believes that this endeavor is what her voice was meant to be used for - to translate the truth...

Pia Ercole

Fhloston Paradigm (with King Britt and Pia Ercole) debuts at The Gatherings Concert Series in Philadelphia on Saturday 21 April 2018 - co-headlining with friend and noted Spacemusician Chuck van Zyl.

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After... Review: After... (2017) by Fhloston Paradigm

Notify the STAR'S END universe, a new star is here. Renowned Philadelphian and internationally acclaimed Producer/DJ/Musician King Britt presents After... (57'07"), the current output by his Fhloston Paradigm music project. To intrepid travelers along the deep and dark spaceways, this album shows an edge-to-edge magic - as these ten sonic encounters will put a hum in your ear drum. With a gentle precision the music on After... generates reassuring atmospheres of electrical synthesizer tones and digital textures - all rolling out beneath a cast of beautiful women's wordless voices. Each guest vocalist brings a distinctive expression, perspective and talent. From a pervasive sense of calm to a most potent magic, as we journey through After... we may feel the strong tug of some unseen charm - and wonder what strange, wonderful spell has been cast? Progressing through these wondrous thought-zones, we find ourselves on an excursion where every track is a mind trip. Some notes are so deep your DNA will vibrate, while further in they are as light as cosmic cotton candy. We can tell from the somatic positioning of each piece, that Britt owns every sound, on every layer - including the absence of drums. By leaving out this most conventional feature, After... provides a thoroughly new and innovative vibe - somewhere between the countenance of the female spirit, the voicings of the ethereal, and the human encounter with the world. After... confirms that blending technology and music at this level can produce touching works, music as intimate as our own blood cells, with the structure and strength of just discovered alloys. Writing music for other people is just nuts and bolts. After... was made for all of creation. Wrapped in the luminous glow of human consciousness, it is full of electronic poetry - as, with its focus on the electro-sonic, it contemplates new narratives of existence. King Britt is now setting the beat for the thinking and feeling set. He proves himself to be a true thinker, amidst gearheads who tinker - in acts that prove, if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much space.

- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END

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Live on Star's End Review: Live on Star's End (2018) by Fhloston Paradigm

Light is the language of the cosmos, but sound is the language of the mind. With his album Fhloston Paradigm: Live on Star's End Philadelphia DJ/producer/musician King Britt contemplates non-narrative forms of thought in a true focus of all things sonic. His 60 minutes of discovery during the 30 July 2017 broadcast of STAR'S END was more a mental process than a performance - a set of choices which turned abstraction into feeling. During his live-to-air radio concert, synthesizers became tuned, ideas were conjured and space was explored - with the music unfolding in a continuous stream. Operating without any "adult supervision", Britt was free to build an electronic environment based on the interplay of sounds and the whim of his mood. Listening in every possible way, listening without hierarchies, he settled into a purely intuitive live undertaking. It is impossible to rehearse for this type of event. One needs the immediacy of an audience, or at least the intimacy of a late night radio show studio, in order to realize anything substantial. Cast adrift from conventional analytical perceptions, we enter the cerebral realm. Fans from the mainstream may find their more typical listening skills useless. With no external framing (but for the occasional reference to his previous - and excellent - studio album After...) Britt makes the experimental accessible. In an irreducible sonic concision sounds disperse along a diagonal. Encountering the different planes, and the forever oscillating patterns and cycles of themes, this work moves under jittery textures above a softly rumbling backdrop. Swarming glittering points feed the churn of notes rising along oblique angles. One timbre blends into the next, as other figurations drift in from nowhere and fade out without warning. The modulations of tones, the constant adjustment to the fabric and character of sounds, the rise and fall of phonic forms, through it all we are guided by Britt - spontaneously in the moment. Fhloston Paradigm: Live on Star's End is the result of a musician quietly and intelligently investigating space. With its reduced narrative content, and emphasis on texture and atmosphere, it possesses aesthetics no different from those found among all orders of electronic musicians. But Britt brings to this adventure a musicality and knowing that few others posses - and, to his credit, allows all this knowledge to serve his improvisations on a subliminal level. Clearly not content to rely on past glories, Live on Star's End is indeed quite different from the more contemporary efforts by King Britt. This kind of sonic encounter encourages a deeper understanding of our self - for musician and audience alike. King Britt found a fuller expression in this studio, over these airwaves, into that night. In the heat of live improvisation a good musician does not melt, we become tempered - the devotional quality of the rite rendering the space sacred. Sound can convey a wide range of expression, indicating the musician's restraint, vigor or willful abandon. In his STAR'S END session, King Britt delivers, with little fuss, a sprawling one-hour jam that will foretell the future no matter when it is heard.

- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END

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Chuck van Zyl Best known as host of STAR'S END (WXPN's renowned radio program of spacemusic dreamscapes) and as coordinator of The Gatherings (Philadelphia's premiere concert series of innovative music), Chuck van Zyl has also been making his own unique style of electronic music since 1983.

Using a variety of modern analog synthesizers and sequencers, and operating at an emotional and enthusiastic pitch, Chuck van Zyl realizes music that possesses as much the buzz and crackle of electricity as it does the frigid black of space.

From his instrument's storm force of sound comes delightful throbbing bass lines, echo-warping chimes and a mystery machine pulse, against which van Zyl sways and plays synth strings, Mellotron choir and full-blooded lead lines. Synthesizer blips interlock, and pound out mighty sequencer patterns, yet this mechanical rigidity is somehow softened - as lines of dancing arpeggios pump up against tuneful melodies and ethereal harmonic progressions. Further in, disarmingly quiet passages reduce the level of density and energy with insinuating modulations and vaporous aural forces.

Throughout his live sets, van Zyl pushes and pulls, expands and contracts the music, and manages to establish an engaging contour through various scenarios and scenes... to attain a rare unity. Offering vivid synthesized sonorities his music's appeal lies in its minimalist values, and in this musician's ability to create an intimate and absorbing listening experience. Anyone in love with Spacemusic and its very specific poetry will want to hear this work in concert.

Chuck van Zyl returns to The Gatherings Concert Series on Saturday 21 April 2018


Chuck van Zyl: Live 25 January 2018 at Johnny Brenda's, Philadelphia, PA (excerpt)

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Recitals 2 Album Notes: Recitals 2 (2018) by Chuck van Zyl

Chuck van Zyl has been a man finding his moment, in any live space that will hold him. The double CD Recitals 2 presents music recorded at two late 2017 performances. His shows for The 6th Floor and DIGITAL DREAMS were documented with an ordinary two-track recording device. After months of review, two 60+ minute sonic journeys were produced, and released as Recitals 2.

The possibilities of Electronic Music make it the perfect tool for exploring spontaneous composition. Recitals 2 is an example of two such events - both without a pre-determined outcome - where the gathered and the musician experienced the music together. A receptive audience brings out van Zyl's strengths, while the hushed space receives his work. The heat of this struggle melds into the music and spirit, softening and melting, then hardening and tempering the player. Each of this album's two concerts moves powerfully and naturally, unsettling the world into which they intercede. A musician of the imagination van Zyl's seeks the pure delight of providing an epic intimacy in the digital age. Determined to conjure kinetic joy an animating force tickles your mind and tugs on your heart - as agile sequencer antics thrill and the vulnerability of improvisation connects. In ever strengthening whirlpools of thought, rows of echoing tone patterns are deployed. Amidst the lines of echoing, dancing arpeggio notes a racing heart turns, runs and trills in melodic invention. Heroic keyboard leads and Mellotron harmonies peak over a pumping, commanding bassline - only later to be drawn down into shifting shadows of sustaining synthesized textures and a quiet sense of mystery. While cliff-high chords stall the dramatic momentum, an infinity of volumes provides a feeling of elation and abandon - only to descend to a skeletal negative space and a bewitching haze of free form randomness.

Recitals 2 takes each member of its audience on their own personal journey. With its deep space gateways and brilliant, skull crushing sequencer breakdowns, from the heights of its combustible, cut loose, superb heedlessness, on down to its quietly ominous consuming dark fields, this music invites wonder. Beginning with simple electronic devices and ending with the multi-dimensional world known only to the imaginative, Chuck van Zyl harnesses the machinery of night. Unblinking, completely in control, he performs in a cool constraint. It is remarkable that, after so many years, the creative flame still burns bright. His concerts are a probe of the calm facade, of the internal mystery - and reach towards the unseen depths within us all. Recitals 2 tells a powerful story of an exhilarated mind - a mind roaming well beyond the concert stage.

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Recitals Album Notes: Recitals (2016) by Chuck van Zyl

Meant to exhibit something of an untamed interior life, Chuck van Zyl hopes his concerts are part of an ongoing chain of innovation. His carefully realized designs are based on a consistent, timbral grammar developed through decades of work. As artists bring greater clarity to their vision over a lifetime, with further live experiences Chuck van Zyl has become more proficient at his craft, and more of who he is musically. Injecting emotion and expression into what would otherwise appear to be a formal exercise, his concerts are a manifestation of his urge to tell. The double CD Recitals presents music recorded at five May 2016 performances, and like contemporaneous works by Redshift, Node and Arc, draws on higher-order capacities. His shows for Event Horizon, MUSIC WITH SPACE, STAR'S END, DIGITAL DREAMS and Digital Underground were documented with an ordinary two-track recording device. After months of review, two 70+ minute sonic journeys were produced, and released as Recitals. Each event offered an essential setting, audience and atmosphere - as well as its own unique challenge. To better connect with his audience, van Zyl set up his equipment among them, explaining that they were welcome to observe him up close as he traversed the next hour's worth of unrestricted sonic space (video documents of each concert have been posted for truer scrutiny of these performances). Through an impressive collection of vintage and modern synthesizers and keyboards, electricity was transformed into sound, and we were lifted into infinite spaces. Beckoning toward the eternal, reverberant Mellotron flutes and strings light out in expressive fanciful flights. In a brace of free improvisation van Zyl flaunts angelic harmonies, just as easily as he mines subterranean frequencies - all in keening consonant concord. Each movement finds portent sounds building dense harmonic forms, out of which emerges motoric sequencer patterns. These echoing interlocking runs of notes expand, contract and breakdown in ever heightening circles. The mounting compositional tension, released in our minds as impressionistic cerebration, feels energizing. Minor key chords slowly sweep across the sound field. Synthetic drones hold, darken, then lighten, informing the music's mood. In an ascending rush, then a descending calm, we depart our more common thoughts... for mysterious regions. Eventually we find the end of this journey, as the music resolves, and settles the listener into the drifting dream of gently humming circuits and charged solid states. Recitals is a wonderful example of van Zyl's talent for spontaneous composition within the context of an improvised live performance. It is a reflection, realized through action, intervened upon by spontaneity, which leads the listener into contemplation - and a wonderful reverie realm. Chuck van Zyl relentlessly seeks to identify the greater virtues of Electronic Music - yet enjoys the fact that his endeavors still hold some secrets. Recitals features works of passionate intensity, and is for anyone seeking a deeper examination of sound and mood. It pulls us through a spiraling cerebral cosmos - where a musician finds his moment.


The Gatherings Concert Series presents Fhloston Paradigm (with King Britt & Pia Ercole) plus Chuck van Zyl live in concert on Saturday 21 April 2018 at 8:00PM (doors open at 7:30pm) in the church sanctuary of St. Mary's Hamilton Village 3916 Locust Walk (just east of 40th & Locust) on the Penn campus in West Philadelphia. Admission: Free! No reservation neccesary. Donations Gratefully Accepted!



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CIMA of PA CIMA of PA - The Corporation for Innovative Music and Arts of Pennsylvania

Fhloston Paradigm (with King Britt & Pia Ercole) plus Chuck van Zyl at The Gatherings Concert Series on 21 April 2018 is funded by CIMA of PA (The Corporation for Innovative Music and Arts of Pennsylvania), the all-volunteer, non-profit organization responsible for organizing and producing The Gatherings Concert Series. The basic mission of CIMA of PA is to bring innovative music concerts to the public and further the advancement of this form of art.

For more about CIMA of PA, please access the Mission Statement

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For more about Fhloston Paradigm, please access the:

For more about Pia Ercole, please access the:

For more about Chuck van Zyl, please access the:

  • Official Website: chuckvanzyl.weebly.com
  • Chuck van Zyl STAR'S END Profile: www.starsend.org/chuckvanzyl.html
  • Chuck van Zyl at YouTube: www.youtube.com/chuckvanzyl
  • Chuck van Zyl interviewed in Sine Wave Magazine February 2013: Read (off-site)
  • Chuck van Zyl interviewed on Nocturnal Transmission 6 February 2009: Audio (off-site)
  • Chuck van Zyl interviewed on Alien Air Music 2 September 2012: Audio (off-site)
  • Photos and Reviews of Chuck van Zyl live at The Gatherings Concert Series in Philadelphia: 12 November 2016
  • Photos and Reviews of Chuck van Zyl + Jeff Coulter live at The Gatherings Concert Series in Philadelphia: 15 November 2014
  • Photos and Reviews of Chuck van Zyl + Terry Furber live at The Gatherings Concert Series in Philadelphia: 17 November 2012
  • Photos and Reviews of Chuck van Zyl live at The Gatherings Concert Series in Philadelphia: 13 November 2010
  • Photos and Reviews of Chuck van Zyl live at The Gatherings Concert Series in Philadelphia: 17 May 2008

The Gatherings Concert Series is presented by the all-volunteer staff of The Corporation for Innovative Music and Arts of Pennsylvania

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