Ebbing Sounds Symposium

Gray Area is thrilled to host Ebbing Sounds Symposium, an interdisciplinary symposium accompanied by concerts investigating new ways of music production, music listening and music critique. As music access today is dominated by streaming formats mediated by industry distributors and algorithm curation, Ebbing Sounds explores how streaming shapes the spheres of music production, music listening and music distribution. A group of international artists, musicians, theorists and sound streaming industry mediators are gathered to discuss the formats and materialities of new emerging music and sound in the context of an algorithm-driven industry-audience relationship.

Ebbing Sounds Symposium is organized by zweikommasieben in cooperation with marcella faustini, DeForrest Brown Jr. and swissnex San Francisco. Ebbing Sounds is kindly supported by Pro Helvetia Schweizer Kulturstiftung, Consulate General of Canada, FONDATION SUISA, Goethe-Institut San Francisco, as well as the The Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States and their season After Tomorrow.

Ticket Info:
Please purchase the ticket for the date you wish to attend. Festival Passes are also available.

Thursday, May 24th, 8pm – Opening reception and Swiss Showcase
Keynote Speech by Eric Harvey [US; Pitchfork]; Live-Sets by S S S S [CH; aufnahme + wiedergabe, Hallow Ground] and Bonaventure [CH; PTP, NON Worldwide]

Friday, May 25th, 9:30am – Symposium
With Lawrence English [AU; Room40, Touch], James Hoff [US; PAN], Kara-Lis Coverdale [CAN; Umor Rex, Boomkat Editions], DeForrest Brown Jr. [US; PTP, zweikommasieben], Inigo Wilkins[UK; Glass Bread], Ruedi Widmer [CH; ZHdK], Curtis Roads [US; University of California] and more.

Friday, May 25th, 9pm – Concerts
With Lawrence English [AU; Room40, Touch], James Hoff [US; PAN], Kara-Lis Coverdale [CAN; Umor Rex, Boomkat Editions], Curtis Roads [US; University of California]

Saturday, May 26th, 9pm – Concerts
With zwei­komma­sieben DJs [CH; Präsens Editionen], Beast Nest [US; Ratskin], Don't DJ [DE; Diskant, Berceuse Heroique], Low Jack [FR; Editions Gravats, L.I.E.S., Modern Love], Justin Anastasi [US; Surface Tension].


Kara-Lis Coverdale

Heralded as “one of the most exciting young composers in North America” by The Guardian and a “unique navigator of the electronic world” by NPR, Kara-Lis Coverdale is a fiercely independent voice in new music that champions omnivorous approach to sound. The Canadian artist creates colourful and dense arrangements that blur the line between the human and the data with a unique penchant for long-form melody, harmony, and sonic detail. With a dynamic sense of play and conceptual dichotomy, her pieces are shimmering pieces that evolve out of polymorphous arrangements of synthesized samples and keyboards processed in surreal and ornate ways. She is a classical pianist by training and has been an organist and music director at several churches since she was 13.

Following a 2014 release of pieces for processed voice that highlight the nature of the voice in the age of data, Kara-Lis released a solo album Aftertouches (Sacred Phrases, 2015), which was named best of the year by The Quietus, The Wire, NPR, and the collaborative album Sirens (Umor Rex, 2015), with LXV. She is also known for her collaborations with Tim Hecker (Virgins, and Love Streams) and her production work for How To Dress Well. She has performed at prestigious institutions around the world, including the Barbican and the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris. She has been composer in residence at EMS Stockholm, and GRM Paris, and has is recipient of a “promising young artist award” by legendary Canadian composer Ann Southam.


Bonaventure is Soraya Lutangu’s nom de guerre. Under this alias, she has been developing sonic weaponry designed to confront oppressive power structures and to explore themes of institutional racism and oppression - something she's experienced first hand growing up in Lausanne, Switzerland, of mixed African and European heritage. She uses music as an identity research tool along with practical and speculative initiatives to connect her African and European roots and investigate human relationships. A regular on Berlin Community Radio, Bonaventure has also made herself at home for several hours on London’s NTS. Her radio mixes bring disparate genres into smooth sequences she refuses to protect from abrupt collisions.

Philippe Hallais aka Low Jack

Philippe Hallais is a French electronic music artist born in 1985 in Tegucigalpa (Honduras) and living in Paris. His music plays with the re-appropriation of sonic clichés, media folklores, and the multiplicity of musical languages associated with dance subcultures. He has published three albums under the pseudonym Low Jack (Garifuna Variations, L.I.E.S, 2014 ; Sewing Machine, In Paradisum, 2015 ; Lighthouse Stories, Modern Love, 2016) and one under his own name, "An American Hero" (Modern Love, 2017).

His live performances include collaborations with musicians Ghédalia Tazartès and Dominick Fernow (Prurient, Vatican Shadow, Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement). Hallais's work has been commissionned by the Quai Branly museum, the Swiss Cultural Center, the Société des Arts in Geneva and the Ricard Foundation in Paris. He also co-runs Editions Gravats with Jean Carval since 2014: a record label that is releasing music by Èlg, Clara!, Black Zone Myth Chant, JiFlure and DJ David Coquelin.

Lawrence English

Lawrence English is composer, media artist and curator based in Australia. Working across an eclectic array of aesthetic investigations, English’s work prompts questions of field, perception and memory. He investigates the politics of perception, through live performance and installation, to create works that ponder subtle transformations of space and ask audiences to become aware of that which exists at the edge of perception.

Curtis Roads

Curtis Roads is a musician as well as a Professor, Vice Chair and Graduate Advisor at the University of California in Santa Barbara. He is an expert in granular and pulsar synthesis.

Justin Anastasi

Former bassist in The Soft Moon and longtime San Francisco DJ, Justin Anastasi is the creative head and producer behind the club night VX and co-founder of the SF based Surface Tension DJ collective.


swissnex San Francisco

swissnex San Francisco is an initiative of Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI), managed in cooperation with the Department of Foreign Affairs as an annex of the Consulate General of Switzerland in San Francisco. A public-private venture, we are part of a network of outposts in Bangalore, Boston, Shanghai, and Singapore. Along with individual science and technology counselors around the world, we work on behalf of Switzerland to expand education, research, and innovation. Vital financial support is provided by donors and sponsors sharing swissnex San Francisco’s commitment to connecting the dots. swissnex San Francisco is a platform for the exchange of knowledge and ideas in science, education, art, and innovation. Through our public events and study tours, we highlight the best of Swiss and North American ingenuity and create opportunities for networking among our diverse group of professional contacts in the San Francisco Bay Area, Silicon Valley, and beyond. We offer workspace in the heart of downtown San Francisco and the resources to help international guests, start-ups, university outposts, entrepreneurs-in-residence, and other visitors succeed. Our global perspective and local expertise allow swissnex San Francisco to anticipate and nurture fruitful collaborations and align the best academics, researchers, entrepreneurs, artists, and thought leaders so that relationships and partnerships can flourish. Working under several mandates, we also help build the presence of Swiss innovators on the world stage. We believe that unexpected outcomes can lead to the brightest achievements, and we encourage the cross-pollination of ideas through the many connections made at swissnex San Francisco.

zweikommasieben Magazine

zweikommasieben is a Swiss magazine that has been devoted to the documentation of contemporary music and sounds since the summer of 2011. The magazine features artist interviews, essays and columns as well as photography, illustration and graphics. In addition zweikommasieben organizes concerts, club nights and other fun events in various cities.


SURFACE TENSION is an interface between primal sound and future vision SURFACE TENSION is a party series in San Francisco, CA SURFACE TENSION are: Justin Anastasi / Nihar Bhatt / DJ CZ / Jason P