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The Cellar and Point

NY City-based septet the Cellar and Stage describe their music as “garage-chamber,” but that descriptor may not do justice towards the group’s wide-ranging meld of designs. The band’s co-leaders, drummer/manufacturer Joseph Branciforte and guitarist Christopher Botta, pull from electronica, contemporary classical structure, fusion jazz, avant-prog rock and roll, and ambient music — to say a mere couple of stylistic markers — reflecting their longtime distributed musical passions, educational backgrounds, and professional pursuits. Branciforte and Botta have already been friends since participating in school within their hometown of Ramsey, NJ, where they performed rock and roll and jazz jointly before searching for Boston’s Berklee University of Music, learning everything from contemporary composition to digital music to record creation. After Berklee, they going to NY and began professions on both edges of the documenting console, as technical engineers aswell as music artists. The set also began composing first music, and shortly made a decision that their compositions ought to be performed by an operating ensemble. This year 2010 they shaped the Cellar and Stage, offering Branciforte on drums and Botta on acoustic guitar, joined with a differing lineup including such modern classical and/or innovative jazz music artists as the Jack port Quartet’s Christopher Otto on violin, Emily DuFour or the Mivos Quartet’s Mariel Roberts on cello, TRANSIT’s Joe Bergen or Claudia Quintet’s Matt Moran on vibraphone, and Wayne Ilgenfritz or Transmission Ensemble’s Greg Chudzik on bass. The group offering this sextet construction started playing at numerous locations in both Brooklyn and Manhattan, garnering beneficial press from magazines including The NY Times and PERIODS NY. Although Branciforte and Botta have been effective in developing the Cellar and Stage as a genuine working band instead of an specifically studio-based task, the group’s debut documenting, Ambit, ended up being a creature of protracted studio room work, maybe reflecting the position of both music group co-leaders as occupied documenting technicians with perfectionist sensibilities (Botta operates a Brooklyn-based studio room named Staple Upper body Sound, and Branciforte’s set of creating and/or engineering customers includes famous brands Tim Berne, Ben Monder, and Tag Dresser). Creation of Ambit proceeded in on-again, off-again style right away of documenting in Feb 2011 through blending and understanding by Branciforte in early 2014, prior to the ambitious record finally saw discharge for the Cuneiform label in Oct of that season. Branciforte created and — with Botta and Andy Taub — co-engineered the record, which highlighted Branciforte (on drums aswell as piano, Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer, Moog bass, glockenspiel, melodica, percussion, and drum loops), Botta (on acoustic and guitar, banjo, and electric guitar loops), violinist/violist Otto, and vibraphonist Bergen became a member of by the Jack port Quartet’s Kevin McFarland on cello, Terrence McManus (Gerry Hemingway Quintet) on guitar, and London-born, Los Angeles-based Rufus Philpot (Right down to the Bone tissue) on bass, the seven music artists ably navigating Branciforte and Botta’s inventive graphs and kaleidoscopic preparations (including preparations of compositions by Anton Webern and György Ligeti). Cellist Roberts and contrabassists Ilgenfritz and Chudzik also made an appearance on selected paths.

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