Karl Evangelista - guitar, voice, drums, samples, misc.
Rei Scampavia - synth, voice, drums, misc.
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.
Grex has performed at The Great American Music Hall, Slim's (SF), Myra Melford's New Frequnices Festival, The Switchboard Music Festival, The Sonic Circuits Festival (DC), and the United States of Asian America Festival, and organized multiple online Lockdown Festivals in the midst of the 2020-2022 coronavirus outbreak. Proceeds from Grex's work have been directed to numerous causes of conscience, including the Milford Graves Memorial Fund, Black Organizing Project, the Shuumi Land Tax, the Alameda County Food bank, and relief efforts for crises in the Philippines and Ukraine.
The band has worked with Fred Frith, Tony Levin, Marshall Trammell (Black Spirituals), Scott Amendola (Nels Cline, TJ Kirk), and Asian Improv aRts, and Evangelista is an active improvising guitarist alongside the likes of Andrew Cyrille, Louis Moholo-Moholo, Bobby Bradford, Oliver Lake, Ben Goldberg, Alexander Hawkins, and Trevor Watts.
Press Photos (by Lenny Gonzalez) (Click Thumbnail for Hi Res Photo)
"a wide-ranging and excitingly unpredictable sound" - The Bay Bridged (Ben Van Houten)
"Relevant and compelling protest music." - The Typescript (Emily Dombrovskaya)
"In a world amidst a pandemic and economic, environmental, and social upheaval, Grex delivers the perfect soundtrack that resonates in the current climate. Essential listening." - Ongoing History of Protest Music
"Massive and Masterful." - SLUG Magazine (Audrey Lockie, review of "Grex: Everything You Said Was Wrong")
"With this album Grex are celebrating all of their influences, combining their loves and their current fears into something to fire at the world. At its best it is venomous and heart-breaking by turns." - OUTSIDELEFT, (John Robinson, review of "Grex: Everything You Said Was Wrong")
"Everything You Said Was Wrong walks the line between hip-hop and experimental rock in a truly unique fashion... the album overflows with creativity and its character is unlike anything else. A remarkable record." - Can This Even Be Called Music, (Daev Tremblay, review of "Grex: Everything You Said Was Wrong")
"Curious listeners will surely be rewarded... What truly makes this music special is the sense that it is deeply personal and unique to the story of the creators themselves." - I Care If You Listen (Greg Nahabedian)
"The musicianship exhibited by the core duo is staggering: Evangelista's wiry facility is drawn from Hendrix, Kaiser, Ray Russell, and Eugene Chadbourne, while Scampavia's shaded classicism provides a compelling and robust foil." Tiny Mix Tapes (Clifford Allen)
"Bay Area duo Grex purvey a freaky jazz-rock sound that surges and feints in surprising ways. Karl Evangelista's guitar squawks and sizzles like a Fred Frith and Sonny Sharrock death match..." - The Stranger (Dave Segal)
"Grex is a fascinating band. One of those groups of musicians who have decided to ignore the boundaries between genres and take matters entirely into their own hand. And the results are marvelous." - Doobeedoobeedoo (Dawoud Kringle)