Eviyan, an all-new trio featuring 3 composer-performers (Evan Ziporyn, Iva Bittová and Gyan Riley; in the pic above, the order L-R is Riley, Bittova and Ziporyn) is playing a FREE SHOW this week at Bohemian National Hall in NYC on Friday, February 15th at 7:30 PM. Click up here or on the link on the bottom for info on the show.
They had a few minutes for The Glass, but for this interview, they chose to respond to me as a group in email, so, we will never know if they said these answers in unison.
CM: What was the impetus for forming the trio Eviyan?
The most important thing was to create some new energy and chemistry with a new combination of musicians. Evan had the idea to bring us all together–he had worked with both Iva & Gyan, and they had heard each other on festivals. We met at Iva’s house and it immediately felt very right. The sound is purely acoustic, combining lots of different music languages, experiences and ideas, so we begin our onomatopoetic journey.
CM: From what I have listened to, the sound is very exotic and beautiful, and seems to have more of a pop element at times. Did this have to be worked on considerably before you got to the point when you started recording?
It is just the opening of our Eviyan face, and the most beautiful part is that we really don’t know what it will grow into or where it will go. That’s the exciting thing, bringing another dimension to art. It is always important to surprise ourselves and our listeners.
We never really discuss what the music is and what it isn’t, but so far we all seem to agree when each piece starts to turn into something.
CM: What is different about your work as a trio from your work as soloists?
We each have our own ways of writing music and improvising, but as a trio it’s most important to be open minded and listen to what’s inside all of us, what we mean, what we need to say in the right moment. Probably we bring out aspects of each other’s playing that are a little different than what we each might do as soloists, but we don’t really think about that, we try to just let time fly and the music take its own course.
CM: Are the works composed for the group collaborative? Are they started by one person and completed by all?
We all have very strong ideas about music. We all bring in material for the group, drawing on various genres, but without any conscious limits. Some pieces are complete , some are sketches, but everything is open to variation once we start rehearsing–at that point it’s completely collaborative.
Keybar Blues (excerpt)
CM: Do you have a specific mission for Eviyan?
We do for sure, it’s just too early to define.
CM: The name, of course, is a hodgepodge of all of your names EV-I-YAN. Does this name also have other meanings for you?
Evian water is very clear and healthy, but this is not a product endorsement!! It was really just a coincidence but we liked it, and maybe our music is clear and healthy too!
CM: When can we expect the debut album?
We want to let the music soak into our veins, ripen a bit with live performance. Hopefully soon. Time is our good friend, at least for the moment!
Kind of Nice (excerpt)