Peace Bells is a glimpse into the multi-layered world of artist and musician Elliot Bergman. The cassette, reissued by Leaving Records, was recorded over a weekend at the Felix Art Fair in Los Angeles, in the booth of Shane Campbell Gallery. Over the course of several days, Bergman gave durational performances utilizing his collection of self-made instruments, which he looped and layered into the music you have on this tape. For the past 15 years, Bergman has been building amplified variations on the African Mbira, which he refers to as Metal Tongues. He has also been making Peace Bells, from melted guns and bullet casings. Using this rich collection of instruments as source material, he builds looping and layered soundscapes that evoke comparisons to Moondog, Reich, Bertoia, Eno and Konono No. 1. These rhythmic and otherworldly textures range from minimal and meditative to driving and danceable.
Elliot Bergman is a musician and visual artist that lives in Los Angeles. After studying Jazz, Composition, and Gamelan music at the University of Michigan, he has been an active part of the creative music scenes in Brooklyn and Chicago while touring extensively with groups including Wild Belle, NOMO, Iron and Wine, and His Name is Alive.
His musical and visual art practices are uniquely intertwined. Bergman often builds the instruments that form the basis for many of the compositions in Wild Belle and NOMO: variations on the African Mbira that are electrified and amplified. His interest in metal work led him to take bronze casting classes at a Chicago area community college, and he has been producing bronze sound vessels and sound sculptures since 2012. He has exhibited his visual work at Andrew Rafacz Gallery in Chicago, where he had a solo show in 2017 called Praxis, and at the Hirshhorn Museum as a part of their Sound Scene show in summer of 2017. In 2019 Bergman had installations and performances at the Marciano Foundation in Los Angeles and Depaul Art Museum in Chicago. He is currently preparing for an upcoming show at Shane Campbell Gallery in Chicago, opening April 3rd 2020.
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