Fil Am music night // Oakland experimental duo Grex returns to Seattle, joining virtuoso drummer Chris Icasiano and musician/poet Nic Masangkay for an evening of cutting-edge sounds with a Filipino American twist.
Grex / https://www.grexsounds.com
Grex is an experimental music duo based out of Oakland, California. In biological terms, a “grex” is an entity composed of several smaller organisms. Grex (the band) explores the meeting point between surreal songcraft and the dark outer reaches of free jazz, industrial hip-hop, and art rock. The group has been called an “otherworldly experience” (Eugene Weekly) and “true genre warping music” (KFJC), recalling at turns the ecstatic energy of John Coltrane, the electronic squall of Death Grips, and the lilting songwriting of Mitski.
Chris Icasiano / https://www.chrisicasiano.com/
Christopher Icasiano is a Filipino-American percussionist and composer from Redmond, WA. Based now in Seattle, he has been performing and touring professionally for over 15 years. His specialization in free-improvisation and experimental music combined with his vast experience with pop and rock have made him a highly sought after collaborator in all genres of music. He co-founded the grassroots arts organization Table & Chairs, as well as the Racer Sessions, a weekly performance series and free-improvisation jam session. He is committed to anti-racist and anti-sexist organizing within Seattle’s DIY and art communities in order to create more accessible and safer spaces.
Nic Masangkay / https://nicmasangkay.com/
Nic Masangkay is a Seattle-based community musician and poet. They graduated in 2016 from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Arts in English. Notable highlights include Buzzfeed, Autostraddle, and Tumblr features for poem “My Gender Is for Mothers”; 2018 Jack Straw Cultural Center Artist Assistance Program Resident; 2019 4Culture Arc Artist Fellow; and independent singer-songwriter-producer alt-pop releases with EP Dark at Dusk: the Final Suicide (2019), singles “Star” (2021) and “Mothers” (2022). Aside from their solo work, Masangkay regularly collaborates with music, movement, and film artists, for remixing, scoring, production, and live sound. As they move to create more intergenerational and all-ages art, working with young people as a teaching artist is a budding focus of their practice. In their music, poetry, collaborations, teaching, and everyday life, Nic generously shares their perspective on the transformative potential of cultural work.