Art on the Bowery: Adam Matta: Beatbox Drift
January 25 2008
Adam Matta’s Beatbox Drift is a way of interacting with New York City and its more underlying, or "psychogeographic," features. The format of the “drift” allows Matta—a world-class beatboxer and innovative sample artist—to shift from style to style and sound to sound in an organic and improvised fashion as he elaborates on his habitual practice of collecting and regurgitating sounds and rhythms from the city.
Some highlights from the program included “Mareo,” an ode to the Lower East Side with beatbox and video; “Underground,” a blues-trance composition for beatbox and voice inspired by the world beneath the city’s streets; “Day in the Life,” a New York story told entirely through sound effects; a new composition for bike wheel, Walkman, laptop, theremin, and beatbox; original songs performed by Sparlha Swa, featuring Adam Matta on accompaniment; plus improvisations and compositions for violin, bass, saxophone, and beatbox, featuring Julianne Carney, Briggan Krauss, and James Ilgenfritz.
Adam Matta performed as part of the Bowery Artist Tribute, a project celebrating artists who have lived and worked on the Bowery.
Courtesy the Artist and New Museum Archive