Toby Driver Sampler 2018

by Toby Driver and collaborators

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about

All the music included here was composed by Toby Driver. More info about each track (i.e. genre guides) can be found in the track tags.

Everything is fluid, the only constant is change, you can't step in the same river twice. Many people hold these truths to be self-evident, and as these ideas become even more more commonplace, it only makes sense that musicians should defy the demand to answer the question "Who are you?" The refusal to answer is, in a way, the best answer possible. Toby Driver's music is what that refusal sounds like.

Having grown up in the Northeast US, surrounded by a confusing combination of progressive social values and religious upbringing, haunted history's abandoned places and nowhere to stop the car even just to take a look, Driver developed an adventurous mind fascinated with exploration, rule breaking, and the unknown. Music was present since birth, through his parents' LP collection, and became a study at age eight following in his older brother's footsteps, whose mere 11-month age difference led to literally everything being shared. It was perhaps here that Driver's urge to discover his own self was stoked.

He studied composition at the experimental school, Hampshire College, with the jazz legend Yusef Lateef, whose unorthodox and innovative artistic practices encouraged Driver's search to become even more vigorous, and he developed a style characterized by imposing architecture and a distinct approach to time, focusing on ensemble performances of grand conducted phrases and impressionistic pulse, strongly influenced by Lateef's sense of harmony–ideas which he later compressed into virtuosic and complex rhythmic counterpoint. Whereas most musicians identify themselves by their chosen genre, Driver's rejection of idioms has resulted in a vast, unpredictable discography full of risks and liberties that invokes influences from every age and place while never settling on one palette of colors, and a career that has brought his music to a considerable breadth of venues, from thousands-capacity metal festivals to classical concert halls, and from basement concerts to the 57th Biennale di Venezia. It is in retrospect then, where the fullest picture of Driver's mission comes into focus: the navigation of his own identity and purpose, the discovery of which aspects are fluid and which are inescapable, and the sustained repetitive insistence of a person's voice and character passing through environments and time.

credits

released April 30, 2017

photo by Gemma Fleming ©2016

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Kayo Dot Brooklyn, New York

KAYO DOT is a progressive rock, avant-goth, weird metal, undefinable band based in Brooklyn, NY.

Our latest album, PLASTIC HOUSE ON BASE OF SKY is available now from The Flenser. nowflensing.com

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