Paul Gilgunn is a composer and musician working across the avant-garde and the popular – encompassing electronica, improvised music, minimalist composition, and post-rock.
His aesthetic is characterised by a defiant avant-gardism and a fascination with creating new musical representations to engage and expand subjectivity. This activity encompasses a variety of forms, genres, instruments, and techniques, and collaborative, ensemble, and solo projects that often involve cross-disciplinary activities with literature, video, video games, and visual art. He has collaborated and performed with leading artists including Rhys Chatham, Tony Conrad, David Daniell, Hans Joachim-Roedelius, Cora Venus Lunny, Robbie Malone, Jay Oglesby, Nick Roth, Danny Snow, and Jennifer Walshe.
Paul’s compositions frequently use alternate tuning systems, bricolage, extended techniques, improvisation, layering, polyrhythms, overtones, repetition, and volume to engage a listener. A studio recording of his latest work HERE WE ARE NOW (2019) was released to critical acclaim in February 2019. He outlines his approach in this new project: “layers of iterated patterns and pulses – awash with justly-tuned drones and overtones – transform Irish folk modalities and rhythms into bold, distinct new music; a ten-part form using dense timbres, duration, repetition, and volume to engage listeners on a number of levels and reconfigure how we are now”.
As an educator, Paul’s areas of interest include contemporary audio culture, composition, cultural theory and philosophy, popular music, and production. He holds a B.A. in English and Music (DCU), an M.Phil. in Popular Literature (TCD), and a Ph.D. in Music (Goldsmiths). His doctoral thesis (2017) examined Rhys Chatham’s pioneering compositions for multiple electric guitars in the context of a post-1945 culture characterised by immanence, immersion, and participation. He is Head of Academic Studies and a Lead Lecturer at BIMM Dublin (Europe’s leading provider of contemporary music education) and an advisor to Music Generation also.
Paul is currently preparing new collaborations, installations, performances, and recordings with works for electronics, guitars, percussion, synthesisers, guitars, voice, and more.
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