When you think of a composer, your first image is probably the historical example: a solitary man, furiously scribbling his genius on to a blank sheet music page. Austin’s Graham Reynolds is a new breed of composer, more interested in collaboration and bucking tradition. He’s worked with filmmaker Richard Linklater and DJ Spooky alike. He’s written a bilingual opera about Pancho Villa. His Golden Hornet nonprofit brings new, challenging composers into nontraditional spaces. Reynolds is crafty with a piano and a score, but his real instrument is the power of people, assembled around a common goal.
After the 2016 election, with tensions between México and Texas at a boil thanks to reckless political rhetoric, Reynolds hatched a plan. He teamed up with Orión García, founder of the Austin based Latinx DJ/Producer/Artist collective Peligrosa; arts entrepreneur Coka Treviño from Monterrey, México; and Mexico City composer, conductor, and sound artist Felipe Pérez Santiago. Together they launched MXTX, a series of live performances, an open-source audio sample library, and an album, featuring 40 artists from both sides of the border. Electronic DJs were paired with classically-trained composers, leading to a border-less sound. It’s an empowering, livable vision of the border that only art and artists can provide.
On April 14 at 8 p.m., KUTX partners with KMFA for a live broadcast featuring MXTX. It’s a taste of the group’s live premiere at the Fusebox Festival on April 16 at the Moody Amphitheater at Waterloo Park. And this week on My KUTX, Reynolds is our guest DJ. He unveils the scope of this international project, playing highlights from the album alongside other boundary-pushing composers. Hear Graham Reynolds’ My KUTX on Saturday, April 2 at 6 p.m. or listen anytime in the player above.
- Dario González – “Belonging”
- Anna Meredith – “Nautilus”
- Alina Maldonado – “Impermamencia Involuntaria”
- Hildur Guðnadóttir – “The Door”
- Jane Claire – “I Wish You Joy”
- King Britt & Tyshawn Sorey – “Untitled One”
- Gabriela Ortiz & Alejandro Escuer – “Human Mechanics”
- Venetian Snares – “Szerencsétlen”
- Bragglights – “Transformer’s Lounge”
- Rival Consoles – “Noise Call And Response I”
- Rubén Albarrán & Ramon Amezcua – “Mundo en Extinción”