MR MUTT Records

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Recorded August 1, 1999 at The Nervous Center, Chicago.

TV Pow is:
Todd Carter: Sampler, Turntables, Tapes, etc
Brent Gutzeit: 20 String Steel Bass, etc
Michael Hartman: Percussion, etc

The Nervous Center, now closed, was a comfortable coffee shop and invaluable meeting place for Chicago's improvising and avant-garde musicians. On several occasions TV Pow performed in thier basement, often to very small or non existent audiences which created a great environment for recording. This CDR documents one of those performances. Many thanks to Richard and Ken Syska, proprietors of The Nervous Center, for all of their hard work and dedication to Chicago music, without whom this recording would not exist. — TV Pow


In five "Improvisations" TV Pow delivers an escapist and luring presence in a live recording that sounds as if the player(s) are skulking around someone's ancient attic; A whole lotta scramblin' goin' on. There is the feeling that they contact mic'd everything on a stage and just began to tinker and peruse objects of curiosity. They play with egg timers, chimes and an occasional bell that a concierge may ordinarily respond to. Are they walking on some old wooden floors, or did they bring along some starboard planks? By using percussion and cymbals in a very out jazz style, TV Pow are like a troupe of wild eyed kids on a Saturday morning breaking from a nocturnal coma. With occasional breaks in the recording it sounds as if they took their live work and then broke it into pieces, but at times it just reminds you of mocking the cheap recording techniques used to bootleg such events secretly on cassette. This sounds like a taped-together-with-marbles-and-papers-in odd-places-prepared-rock band. One thing is clear - and that is the enormous feedback din that booms big and the distillation of the fore and backgrounds make for a definitive division in space. — TJ Norris,


TV Pow is a trio of composers and free improvisers first organized in Tokyo 1995 by Michael Hartman and Brent Gutzeit, and later joined by Todd Carter in the move to Chicago in 1996. They employ samplers, percussion, invented instruments, synthesizers, turntables, tape manipulation, computers and multi-speaker surround-sound systems in a constantly evolving soundscape of sparkling electronics, ambient drones, minimalist techno, and cinematic field recordings. Creating through live performance something both new and recombinant, TV Pow has toured throughout Japan, Europe, and the United States.