(photo by Alyssa Reed-Stuewe)

"Gregg Skloff is one of the Oregon coast's finest supporters of experimental music, using his radio show on
KMUN And Otherness and his band Existence Habit as platforms to draw ears and minds towards challenging
sounds. And like most sonic explorers, he spends equal amounts of time playing music on his own, using his
trusty contrabass as his guide."
-- Robert Ham, Experimental Portland

"...manipulates various tones, hidden melodies and loops into a curved drone/ambient sound...
Skloff has a lot of work available on Bandcamp and I am just starting to dig in; you should too."
-- David Nemeth, acts of silence

 

Noticing contrabassist Gregg Skloff carrying his instrument on a city sidewalk, a passing stranger once asked him, "Classical or jazz?"

Gregg's reply: "All of the above AND BEYOND!"

This remark, while glib, is quite apt; as his album The Glacial Enclosure (Eiderdown Records, 2016) – along with his other work – can demonstrate, Gregg Skloff manages to combine and transcend many lineages and languages of composition and improvisation.

Gregg's scope has encompassed various forms and hybrids of rock, folk, jazz, chamber music, noise, sound-object installation, and non-idiomatic improvisation. Over the past decade, his solo efforts have largely inhabited the realm of minimal electro-acoustic ambient drone, heard to profound effect on albums such as This Time The Ride Belongs To Us (2014), The eye is the egg (2013), and Ultraviolet Phase Transition Blues (2012).

Based in the Pacific Northwest since 1997, Gregg Skloff has played in ensembles led by Bhob Rainey, John Gruntfest, Urs Leimgruber, Moe! Staiano, Matana Roberts, and Gino Robair, among others. He has been a member of The Naked Future (also featuring bass clarinetist Arrington de Dionyso, pianist Thollem McDonas, and drummer John Niekrasz), whose album Gigantomachia was released by ESP-Disk' in 2009. A resident of Astoria, OR since 2010, Gregg hosts the And Otherness program on Coast Community Radio, where his affinity for innovative, ethereal, and/or outré sounds has led writer Robert Ham to describe him as "one of the Oregon coast's finest supporters of experimental music."

 

"Contrabass spectacular with added effects. A slow paced evocative experimental drone delight."
-- BravoMarco, KZSU Zookeeper Online

"Notes are sustained in grinding arcs that last for minutes, and Skloff's use of amplification and reverb effects adds a touch of metallic squall to the doom."
-- Tristan Bath, Spool's Out/The Quietus

"If a glacial period could be recorded over thousands of years then condensed into a little over a half hour, maybe this is what it would sound like."
-- Ken Lower, lost in a sea of sound

"great, great sound-creation and the washing wealth of electricity is dizzying and psychedelically-true..."
-- Kev Cahill, rotational review

"strange gliding simple slow amplified contrabass AMAZINGNESS by Gregg Skloff !!!!"
-- Simon Aulman, pyongyang plastics

"Light from elsewhere."
-- Jon Siemasko, I Want To Put Something In Your Ear

"Ambient in the good way."
-- C. Reider, Vuzh Music

"...mesmerizing and beautiful..."
-- Ricardo Wang, Dead Air Fresheners

"Skloff's amplified acoustic bass transmits an ominous and steely edge, where his broad and prominent sound... casts a colossal bottom-end."
-- Glenn Astarita, ejazznews.com

"Bassist Gregg Skloff saws at his upright, usually scraping out distorted noises that are probably actual notes, but it's hard to tell sometimes."
-- Max Level, KFJC On-Line Reviews

"...whipping his amplified bass to make it grunt like a magic hog..."
-- Ed Pinsent, The Sound Projector

"...one of the few improvisers who can consistently put me in a completely different space."
-- Kelvin Pittman

"It seemed like you were trying to cop a buzz off the sound...."
-- Shane Ronet

"That was right purty."
-- Don Bolles

 

Gregg Skloff has played contrabass since 1990. From 1990 to '95 he took lessons from George Wellington Sr., and also spent three years in Punahou School's esteemed Symphony Orchestra. Meanwhile, having begun on bass guitar in 1991, Gregg listened obsessively to music ranging from jazz to punk, metal to pop, prog to reggae, and beyond. This perhaps contributed to his abiding view of music as a totality, and his intolerance of genre-based jingoism.

Since his move to the Pacific Northwest in 1997, Gregg has played in various improvisational settings with a multitude of musicians, including Nick Bindeman, Gust Burns, Arrington de Dionyso, Kevin Doria, Brad Gibson, Michael Griffen, Paul Hoskin, Jean-Paul Jenkins, Nathan Levine, Tatsuya Nakatani, Adrian Orange, Kelvin Pittman, Matana Roberts, Ben L. Robertson, Jacob Wick, Bert Wilson, McCloud Zicmuse, and many others. He has also devoted his efforts to several rock bands, including Counterfeit Monsters, Thunder!Thunder!Thunder! (a pre-Explode Into Colors project with Claudia Meza and Lisa Schonberg), Bloodbiker (with Dewey Mahood and Jed Bindeman), and Drepa Alla; occasionally, he has accompanied B'eirth in the "Symbolist folk" project Birch Book.

In 2009, ESP-Disk released the album Gigantomachia by The Naked Future (featuring de Dionyso, Skloff, pianist Thollem McDonas and drummer John Niekrasz) to international acclaim. Gregg has been a regular participant with the Creative Music Guild's large ensembles (for guest artists such as John Gruntfest, Urs Leimgruber, and Bhob Rainey) and with the Creative Composers Collective of Portland. He has been the featured bassist in the Portland performances of Moe! Staiano's "End Of An Error" and Gino Robair's "I, Norton." Existence Habit, his group with Roger Hayes and sometimes Derek Ecklund, began activity in 2013. Gregg's work on his own, meanwhile, conjures a uniquely intense and enigmatic mood, whether in the form of his fractured lo-fi (now-defunct) hermit-pop outfit Cloaca Clock or in the swirling storms and sweeping vistas of his solo instrumental performances.

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