Animal Hospital ensemble

Animal Hospital Ensemble

About

The origins of Animal Hospital Ensemble are rooted in Kevin Micka’s solo moniker "Animal Hospital." Since the winter of 2011, a large ensemble version of his music has been realized with performances at Machines with Magnets, MassArt, the Museum of Fine Arts, Art Beat Somerville, and First Night. Altering traditional concert convention by situating the audience in the center of the room encircled by dozens of guitarists and drummers, Animal Hospital Ensemble performances provide a unique sonic experience for each listener.

"Standing in the middle, it sounded like you were deep inside an angry hornet's nest. Electric guitars ... ringing in primal, circular rhythms…You felt dizzy - but exhilarated." (James Reed, The Boston Globe)
"His ensemble is a testament to Micka's reputation as one of the city's most important sonic architects and proof of a unified scene in our underrated city." (Nolan Gawron, The Metro)

News:
Upcoming performance scheduled on New Year's Eve, 12 31 2013 in Boston at First Night.

The
ANIMAL HOSPITAL ENSEMBLE plays in a circle surrounding the audience.

Press

  • Forming an Animal collective

    July 30, 2012 : The Metro

    Animal Hospital began as a one-man band fronted by the modest and multi-talented Kevin Micka, but the project has since grown into an ensemble comprised of a small army of friends and local luminaries. When he began performing and recording solo, Micka’s music was created by looping live drums, guitars and specially mic’d toys into…
    READ MORE +

    Animal Hospital began as a one-man band fronted by the modest and multi-talented Kevin Micka, but the project has since grown into an ensemble comprised of a small army of friends and local luminaries.

    When he began performing and recording solo, Micka’s music was created by looping live drums, guitars and specially mic’d toys into a homemade soundboard where sparse soundscapes culminated into heavy, intricate crescendos with multiple tracks coexisting in harmonious chaos.

    Last December, however, he took his project one step further, curating his greatest undertaking so far. Stepping away from his instruments and taking on the role of conductor, Micka handpicked 32 musicians and positioned them in a circle surrounding the sold-out MassArt audience to perform selections from the Animal Hospital catalogue.

    “Anywhere you were in the circle you would see something different and hear something different,” notes Micka. “It was really great going through the process of deconstructing and analyzing all the parts for everyone and then see what they did with them. Most of the parts I had very specific ideas about. Some others were a lot more open to improvise off of, which added a whole new life to it. I never really thought about conducting before, but I really enjoyed it. In some ways it made a lot of sense. My brain accepted it in a similar way to playing solo — a similar thought process of steps to follow and execute the arrangement.”

    A sound decision

    Micka is known around town as a sound engineer, a consistent hired gun for friends’ bands and the most recent member of Neptune. His ensemble is a testament to Mi-cka’s reputation as one of the city’s most important sonic architects and proof of a unified scene in our underrated city.

    “One of the benefits of living in Boston so long is that I’ve met and gotten to know a lot of these people from playing with them,” he says.

  • A One-Man Band Becomes an Orchestra

    April 30, 2012 : blurredvisionary

    Kevin Micka has long been Boston’s most modest, capable and prolific sonic architect. Those of us who have followed his work know he’s rarely one to hype up his own. Whether it be recording and mixing some of the city’s best rock records, building microphones, repairing instruments, touring with friends’ bands, or performing amazingly and…
    READ MORE +

    Kevin Micka has long been Boston’s most modest, capable and prolific sonic architect. Those of us who have followed his work know he’s rarely one to hype up his own. Whether it be recording and mixing some of the city’s best rock records, building microphones, repairing instruments, touring with friends’ bands, or performing amazingly and intricately as his one-man-band, Animal Hospital, Micka has always been the city’s quiet genius. In short, he is the hope and fulfillment of all that is good in our underrated town.

    In early December, Micka transformed Animal Hospital from a one-man band to an epic rock orchestra. His magnum opus and greatest undertaking so far, Micka assembled a small army of friends and local luminaries to showcase his music on a grander scale. Stepping away from his instruments, Micka took on the role of conductor as 32 musicians assembled in a semi-circle at a sold-out MassArt auditorium to perform hand-picked selections from his Animal Hospital catalogue. Songs usually performed alone with loops of drums, guitars and homemade mic’d instruments, were fleshed out by 23 guitarists, seven string players and two drummers. The grandiose spectacle provided a testament to the vision of Kevin Micka, and his importance as an artist, in and beyond city limits. The following interview is an exclusive. Completed via email from his recent European tour, Micka was kind enough to answer the following questions.

    Read the full interview here.

  • An experiment in surround sound

    December 6, 2011 : The Boston Globe

    The surround sound you hear at a concert is ultimately technological trickery – the woofers in the back of a venue, the speakers hanging from the rafters. Sunday’s performance by Animal Hospital Ensemble at the Massachusetts College of Art, meanwhile, was authentically immersive. The crowd of over 200 filed into the Pozen Center, grabbed seats…
    READ MORE +

    The surround sound you hear at a concert is ultimately technological trickery – the woofers in the back of a venue, the speakers hanging from the rafters. Sunday’s performance by Animal Hospital Ensemble at the Massachusetts College of Art, meanwhile, was authentically immersive. The crowd of over 200 filed into the Pozen Center, grabbed seats in the middle, and soon found themselves engulfed in a circle of two drummers, six string players and 22 guitarists.

  • A circle of friends make beautiful music as Animal Hospital Ensemble

    December 2, 2011 : The Boston Globe

    Kevin Micka (who performs as Animal Hospital) composes, produces, and performs his music alone, mining intense beauty from repeated patterns and heavy drones. In a live setting, he loops intricate moving parts to achieve the work of dozens. Except now Micka is expanding the band’s horizons, at least for two one-off performances. The Animal Hospital…
    READ MORE +

    Kevin Micka (who performs as Animal Hospital) composes, produces, and performs his music alone, mining intense beauty from repeated patterns and heavy drones. In a live setting, he loops intricate moving parts to achieve the work of dozens. Except now Micka is expanding the band’s horizons, at least for two one-off performances. The Animal Hospital Ensemble (a group of over 30 musicians) will make its debut in Pawtucket tomorrow before arriving in Boston at the Pozen Center on Sunday.

Animal Hospital Ensemble at Mass Art, December 2011

Upcoming Performances

Animal Hospital Ensemble - North Haven, Maine, USA

10 piece version of the Animal Hospital Ensemble
When: Fri July 25 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM

Animal Hospital Ensemble - Rockland, Maine, USA

10 piece version of the Animal Hospital Ensemble
When: Sat July 26 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM

Animal Hospital Ensemble - Portland, Maine, USA

10 piece version of the Animal Hospital Ensemble
Early & Free Show!
When: Sun July 27 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Past Shows +

Animal Hospital (solo), Aidan Baker, Insect Ark, Owlfood - Jamaica Plain, MA, USA

When: Fri March 29 2013 7:00 AM - 8:15 PM
Where: Aviary

Ghost Box Orchestra, Animal Hospital (trio), Royal Wedding, Ocular Audio Experiment - Cambridge, MA, USA

When: Fri May 10 2013 9:00 PM - Sat May 11 2:00 AM

The Luyas, Julien Lynch, Animal Hospital (trio) - Brighton, MA, USA

When: Wed June 5 2013 9:00 PM - Thu June 6 1:00 AM

Animal Hospital Ensemble at Art Beat Festival in Somerville, MA, USA

When: Fri July 19 2013 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Animal Hospital (solo), Donna Parker & Mark William Pearson, Heathen Shame, Deleuzer, Vic Rawlings, DJ Sam YDLMIER - Somerville, MA, USA

When: Sat July 20 2013 8:00 PM - 11:45 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Portsmouth, NH, USA

When: Sat August 31 2013 9:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Where: Book & Bar

Ho-Ag, Young Sexy Assassins, Big Digits, Pile, Animal Hospital (solo) - Brighton, MA, USA

When: Sat September 7 2013 9:00 PM - Sun September 8 12:45 AM

The Caribbean, Animal Hospital (solo) - Pawtucket, RI, USA

When: Sun October 13 2013 9:00 PM - 11:45 PM

Diploid, Hex on the Beach, Canine, Removalist, Animal Hospital (solo) - Melbourne, VIC, AU

When: Sun October 20 2013 8:45 PM - 11:45 PM

Animal Hospital (solo), Angel Eyes, The Chops - Melbourne, VIC, AU

When: Wed October 23 2013 8:30 PM - 11:30 PM

Os Mutantes, Capsula, Animal Hospital (solo) - Cambridge, MA, USA

When: Sat November 9 2013 8:00 PM - Sun November 10 12:30 AM

Animal Hospital Ensemble - Boston, MA, USA

Large ensemble in the round! With DJ Ian Lawrence.
When: Tue December 31 2013 7:00 PM - 10:15 PM

The Aesthetics, Ghost Gums, Animal Hospital (solo) - Melbourne, VIC, AU

When: Thu March 6 10:30 PM - Fri March 7 1:30 AM
Where: Bar Open

Friendsters, Animal Hospital (solo), Exotic Dog - Sydney, NSW, AU

When: Wed March 12 8:45 PM - 11:45 PM

Animal Hospital (solo), Hermione Jackson - Wellington, NZ

When: Fri March 14 8:30 PM - 10:30 PM

Animal Hospital (solo), Pumice, Kraus - Auckland,NZ

When: Sun March 16 7:45 PM - 10:45 PM

Major Stars, Animal Hospital (trio), Planet of Adventure, Long Blonde Wig - Boston, MA, USA

When: Fri March 28 8:30 PM - Sat March 29 1:00 AM

Julianna Barwick, Vasillus, Animal Hospital (solo) - Cambridge, MA, USA

When: Fri April 18 7:30 PM - 10:30 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Osaka, Japan

Early show.
When: Tue May 6 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Tokyo, Japan

w/ Oridnary Purpose, Plug and Invitation, The Perfect Sports, The Fess
When: Wed May 14 6:00 PM - 11:30 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

w/ TBA
When: Sun June 1 8:30 PM - 11:30 PM
Where: Comuna

ANIMAL HOSPITAL (SOLO) - São Paulo, Brazil

Dissenso Sessions w/ Objeto Amarelo + National
When: Mon June 2 8:00 PM - 10:45 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Santiago, Chile

w/ TO BE AS EL COYOTE (SCL),
L.E.M., LA GOLDEN ACAPULCO
When: Fri June 6 8:00 PM - 11:00 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Lima, Peru

BUH RECORDS: w/ MELMANN(ARGENTINA)/JUAN PABLO ARAGON+PAUCHI SASAKI/IPADMORITA(MICKY UZA, DE RAYOBAC)
When: Wed June 11 8:15 PM - 11:15 PM

Animal Hospital (solo) - Cambridge, MA

MAN FOREVER W/ SO PERCUSSION + DUST COMMANDER
When: Mon July 7 8:30 PM - 11:30 PM
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