After three years in Wellington, multi-instrumentalist Adam Page returns to Adelaide with new projects on the horizon.
It’s impossible to pigeonhole the highly-skilled loop creator, saxophonist, beatmaker and composer that is Adam Page. The eclectic artist moved to Wellington three years ago to be inspired by the creative New Zealand hub. Page achieved that and more. He formed a beats duo, Band of Thousands with Fat Freddy’s Drop’s Riki Gooch, composed the soundtrack for a play about quantum physics, was responsible for a children’s show, performed his solo loops show in New Zealand and across the world, and was commissioned by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO) to compose a piece performed by the NZSO, Momentvm. Now back in Adelaide, Page is reunited with local Afro-beat collective Shaolin Afronauts to launch their third album Follow the Path, at The Gov on Saturday, June 14 and will perform the much-anticipated Nexus Live Commission with Oisima and Jay Dabgar the night before at the Nexus Multicultural Arts Centre. But it was his string of compositions in New Zealand, which allowed Page to find his voice in regards to composing. “I’ve definitely got a sound to my composition now that I wouldn’t have found if I didn’t have really supportive people around me that just gave me 100 percent artistic control,” Page explains. “I guess that whole openness for you to have your own voice in Wellington really helped me find my feet immediately in town to really kick my career up to the next level.” This began when he wrote and performed the music for a play about quantum physics – Into the Uncanny Valley. “I had a massive job to create the soundtrack to the big bang and to all the amazing ideas that come with quantum physics, and using different instruments and writing for different instruments, like a lot of percussion instruments, and tuned percussion instruments as well. Those sounds really resonated with me as well as strings. Once I got the commission for the NZSO, I had this sound in my head, and I kind of continued that. I guess it has been a progression and it’s definitely not finished yet – I’ve got heaps of plans for continuing my journey here in Adelaide.” One of Page’s dreams is to record Momentvm with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra. He will launch a new ensemble in the coming months, the Adam Page Ensemble, which will combine classical music with dance music. “It will have strings, woodwind, percussion and big fat beats. It has been going around in my head for about a year now. I’ve got my band planned and once these next few commissions are over I’ll be putting 100 percent [of my] energy into creating that ensemble.” An exciting commission Page has to complete is the Nexus Live Commission with local beatmaker Oisima (Anth Wendt) and tabla player Jay Dabgar. Their 70-minute composition will mix their three musical disciplines: Indian (Dagbar), electronic (Oisima) and improvised jazz (Page). Page says the composition will have a world music tinge but that their individual sounds will come to the forefront. “There will be trios, there will be duos, there will be solos, it will be this continuous piece that will hopefully take the audience on a pretty incredible journey.” The trio will perform the original composition at Nexus Multicultural Arts Centre on Friday, June 13. The night after, Page will join the Afro-beat collective the Shaolin Afronauts to launch their third album – the double LP Follow the Path, which will be released by UK label Freestyle Records – at the Governor Hindmarsh. “The new album is awesome and I think it’s probably the band’s best work to date and it’s their strongest compositionally as well. It’s still very Afro-beaty but if you take Afro-beat and put it into a handbag, turn it upside down and shake it – so that it all comes out in all these different fragments of Afro-beat – and then look at what’s on the floor, it’s just this big kaleidoscope of Afro-beat sounds. “I think people are going to be quite impressed. It has elements of both previous albums but then taken to the next level.” Page and the Afronauts will perform at Glastonbury later this month. “I haven’t been to that part of the world in a while and even though I was in Edinburgh last year for the Fringe, that is very much its own little universe. I’m certainly very much looking forward to the other shows we’re [Shaolin Afronauts] doing around Europe and getting back to Paris and Amsterdam will be really awesome.” The last time Page was in that part of the world was to present his solo show at Edinburgh. It received a glowing five-star review from Three Weeks. “That whole festival was kind of worth it because of that one review. I can use that for the rest of my life. It’s not often that you get a five-star review and I was just blown away.” An Adelaide Fringe favourite, Page hasn’t performed at the Fringe since 2011. He will be back next year to present his solo show. “My solo stuff has evolved exponentially in the last four years. It will still be the same concept of me with my looping pedals and all my instruments improvising but I’ve got four years of experience under my belt now.” Nexus Live Commission Adam Page, Oisima and Jay Dabgar Friday, June 13 Nexus Multicultural Arts Centre nexus.asn.au Shaolin Afroanuts Saturday, June 14 The Governor Hindmarsh shaolinafronauts.com adampage.prosite.com ;
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