Ashley Paul is an American performer/ composer currently based in London. Her intuitive process integrates free form song structures with a focused approach to sound and clatter. A complexity of instruments including saxophone, clarinet, voice, prepared strings, bells and percussion create a delicate palette, uniquely her own. Her solo albums have received critical acclaim being chosen in The Wire: Top 50 Albums of 2013, Pitchfork’s “The Out Door” best experimental sounds of 2013, number one on Byron Coley and Thurston Moore’s “Tongue Top Ten” in Arthur Magazine, and included on NPR’s All Songs Considered “Best of 2010”. She has been interviewed and/ or featured in the Wire, The New York Times, Spex, Jungle World, The Sound Projector, Gonzo (circus), Dummy, BOMB, The Quietus, Ad Hoc, Foxy Digitalis, NPR’s “All Songs Considered” and Rare Frequency. Ashley’s composition “The Pace of Time” premiered at Roundhouse (London), August 2013, and was performed collaboratively with Nik Colk Void and Simon Fisher Turner.
Latest recordings include “Heat Source”, released on Important Records in November 2014 and “04.10.15” a live performance at Cafe Oto, released by the venue’s OTORoku imprint in 2016. In addition to her solo work, Ashley currently works with two ensembles: a trio with Ben Pritchard (guitar) and Olan Stephens (guitar, sampler) which reimagines songs from recent albums, and a duo project with Michael Speers (percussion, electronics) involving noisy long-form improvisations.
Ashley has performed the World and US premieres of Phill Niblock’s Asheli, a piece composed specifically for her and Eli Keszler and performed live with Niblock. She performed the US premiere of Mauricio Kagel’s Der Schall at Merkin Concert Hall (NYC) and premiered Anthony Coleman’s quartet Damaged by Sunlight at Banlieues Bleues Festival (Paris). Ashley received a residency at ISSUE Project Room in 2008 and a Fellowship Grant in composition from the Rhode Island State Council of the Arts, 2010. Ashley is currently a Research Fellow at Goldsmiths University, London attached to the Contemporary Music and Popular Music Research Units. She has performed and/ or recorded with Thurston Moore, Rashad Becker, Loren Connors, Gavin Bryars, Roscoe Mitchell, Aki Onda, Greg Kelley, Joe Morris, Seijiro Murayama, Bill Nace and Heatsick.
Ashley has designed, created artwork and/or screen printed album covers for labels/ organizations including Ecstatic Peace!, Northern Spy, Non-Event, REL Records, Cinematograph and her own imprint Wagtail. Her song “Leave Mine” was presented in collaboration with animator Gretta Johnson at The Children’s Museum of the Arts (NYC) and was published in the John Cage Centennial edition of the Black Mountain College Journal. Ashley received her BM and MM from New England Conservatory.
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