Echo Chamber marks the debut solo release from Evan Lipson. This exquisitely engineered multi-channel recording presents a single uninterrupted improvised double bass performance recorded live within the unique & uncommonly resonant acoustic environs of one of the many disused former munition storage "bunkers" (Corbetta magazines) located throughout the grounds of Enterprise South Nature Park in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The album contains sounds of an extraordinary nature, unlike any that have likely been encountered before.
Given the location's historical connection with United States foreign warfare from around the mid to latter half of the 20th century (beginning in 1942 and ending in 1977), serving as one of the largest military TNT storage facilities in the US, this recording exists as a symbolic gesture of dignified remembrance; a contemplative & respectful threnody for the millions of innocent civilians who were harmed as a result of the deadly explosives which were once stored at this location. That being said, playing freely does nothing to serve the social good, and to pretend otherwise corrupts the aesthetic judgment of both player and listener alike.
Evan Lipson (b. 1981) has lived with the incurable disease of music since early adolescence, seeking the liminal realms in which intellect and instinct, history and myth, and creative and destructive force intersect. Drawn towards aberrant perspectives at an early age, his formative activities were primarily rooted in extreme and discordant forms stemming from various traditions of “underground” and ancient musics. He may or may not have some degree of affiliation with Rev. Fred Lane in addition to a social scientific think tank known as MEINSCHAFT.
Other presently active outfits: RAWL, Wrest, Roughhousing, Dumbass Youth, Virtual Balboa, SONS, and various ongoing collaborations with David Greenberger (Duplex Planet). Past units include Normal Love, Satanized, and Peckerwood Junction (feat. Jim Goad).
Lipson, currently based in Knoxville, Tennessee, has toured throughout North America and Europe, as well as Taiwan and Japan. His music has been released on a variety of independent imprints including SKiN GRAFT, UgEXPLODE, Public Eyesore, Ramble Records, Creative Sources, High Two, Tymbal Tapes, Skrot Up, and Spring Garden Music.
Lipson has collaborated with myriad artists including:
Susan Alcorn, Luciana Arias, Mike Baggetta, Tim Barnes, Kath Bloom, Thomas Buckner, Eugene Chadbourne, Charles Cohen, Andrew D'Angelo, Robert Dick, Tom Djill, Michael Evans, Josephine Foster, The Flying Luttenbachers, Jim Goad, Mary Halvorson, Alex Hampshire, Col. Bruce Hampton, Susan Hefner, Katt Hernandez, Shelley Hirsch, Tim Hodgkinson, ID M Theftable, Ko Ishikawa, JACK Quartet, Darius Jones, Rick Iannacone, Matthias Kaul, Greg Kelley, Byard Lancaster, Thomas Lehn, Lukas Ligeti, Toshi Makihara, Mat Maneri, Sabir Mateen, Toshimaru Nakamura, Tatsuya Nakatani, Matt Nelson (bass), Matt Nelson (saxophones), Pauline Oliveros, Jessica Pavone, Paul Plimely, Mike Pride, RUINS (Yoshida Tatsuya), Brandon Seabrook, Shaking Ray Levis, Elliott Sharp, LaDonna Smith, Ron Stabinsky, Wharton Tiers, Roger Turner, Birgit Ulher, Dylan van der Schyff, Weasel Walter, Rick Weaver, Veryan Weston, Wolter Wierbos, Davey Williams, Nate Wooley, Jack Wright, and Jeff Zagers.
(Avant Music News)In September 2021, Knoxville, Tennessee double bassist Evan Lipson entered a disused World War II-era ordnance storage bunker in Chattanooga’s Enterprise South Nature Park to record the long improvisation aptly titled Echo Chamber. The resonance of the bunker is remarkable, as can readily be heard in the first few minutes of the recording: miscellaneous, difficult-to-attribute sounds multiply and fall back on themselves, firmly establishing the bunker’s interior as an active participant in the performance that follows. And what follows is a stunning, virtuoso extraction of sounds from the entire, expansive range of the double bass, which Lipson plays with a variety of conventional and extended techniques. He is apt to approach the bass as a percussion instrument, using the bow to strike the strings as well as other points along its body, but is just as inclined to pull sharp, brittle overtones from it with bow and fingers, or to pluck upper register harmonies against a bowed, low register drone tone. These, along with a robust, hymn-like passage for bowed chords, exploit the resonant potential of the space to its fullest. An exciting performance indeed. - Daniel Barbiero
(Disaster Amnesiac)My oh my, such darkened beauty here from Evan Lipson. On Echo Chamber, the well traveled bass player has presented a threnody for victims of the 20th Century Military Industrial Complex, one that was recorded inside a facility that said complex used to build explosives which killed untold millions. Those countless deaths can and should loom large as one listens, at the very least in terms of supplying the dark side of the very moving experience one could have when hearing this CD. They are not pleasant to ponder, nor should they be. That said, it's imperative that taxpaying Americans start to reckon with them; it's the only sure way to healing the physical and psychic wounds that still permeate so many areas. OK, that's the dark side of Echo Chamber. On the beauty side, the attentive listener will find themselves immersed within a fascinating display of extended techniques for the upright bass, all utilized in eminently musical ways, ways that lead the ears from zone to zone of fascinating passages. Pizzicato, arco, con legno, spiccato...these and so many more methods for coaxing new sounds from a well investigated instrument show up on Echo Chamber. Lipson presents three quarters of an hour of focused, present solo playing on Echo Chamber, forty five-ish minutes of deeply engaging investigations, made even more compelling by his astute spacial awareness with an echo chamber. The ways that his tones bounce around the big concrete space of a bunker are damn great. For American society to be taken seriously again, it must remove the yoke of Military Industrial Complex. It must also consider cultural moves such as those made on Echo Chamber. It's Disaster Amnesiac's wish that in, say, one hundred years, musicians such as Evan Lipson and their contributions to a truly creative culture are discussed and valued. - Mark Pino
(Bad Alchemy) EVAN LIPSON in Knoxville, einst Bassmann in Mike Pride's From Bacteria To Boys, hat sich im Psychotic Quartet und mit Jack Wright (zu zweit, mit Wrest und RAWL) weiter profiliert. Echo Chamber (PE152) ist sein Solodebut mit 42 Jahren, entstanden in einem der 'Magazine' des Enterprise South Nature Parks in Tennessee, dem zum Erholungsgebiet umgewandelten Teil - auf dem andern ist die Volkswagen Chattanooga Assembly Plant angesiedelt - einer der von 1942 bis 1977 größten TNT-Produktionsstätten der USA. Neben einem Spiritus loci, der seinem Interesse an Schnittstellen von Historie und Mythen, von kreativen und destruktiven Kräften entgegenkommt, fand Lipson da auch eine perfekte Echokammer, um die unzähligen Opfer dieser Bomben in Deutschland, Japan, Korea und Vietnam zu beklagen und zu betrauern. Ohne sich was darauf einzubilden: Playing freely does nothing to serve the social good. Er erzeugt berstende, detonierende, stöhnende, kratzende, klappernde Klänge, wie man sie einem Kontrabass kaum zutrauen mag – außer dem mit Nummernschildern präparierten von Clayton Thomas. Dabei ist diese phantastische Threnodie über diskante Abgründe hinweg als Weiße Magie in einem Ring von Lichtern zugleich ein sonores Manifest, das neben volltönendem Arco auch plonkenden und schnarrenden Hall auskostet für die Wiederverzauberung einer finsteren Aura. - Rigobert Dittmann
(Vital Weekly) Here we have the debut solo release by Evan Lipson on double bass. He hails from America and has played in the psychotic quartet (violin, trombone, drums and bass) with numerous improvising musicians. Susan Alcorn, Mary Halvorson, Toshimaru Nakamura, and Nate Wooley to name a few. The music he recorded in a Corbetta magazine, a dome-shaped bunker for ammunition storage, one of a hundred located at Entreprise South Nature Park in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Because of its construction, there’s a lot of natural reverb happening. This is powerful music, all 43 minutes, one long improvisation in -I presume- one take. Percussive sounds are made with the double bass, even sounds resembling a helicopter. Grinding noises and ostinato notes with added ones to create slow-changing chords. Ferious playing coupled with longer, more serene sections but with the same intensity as in the wilder sections. Listen to this on a high volume! The neighbours might complain, but it does justice to this high-octane music—great release with a great mix. - Mark Daelmans-Sikkel