Inspired by the Fugates of Troublesome Creek, Smurfs, and colloidal silver overuse, I am on a lifelong mission to turn a sizeable swatch of my skin blue. Blue is the color of the sky, water, the throat chakra, and is also known as the color of desperation.
Appalachian Trance Metal is my mind, body, and soul.
It’s imperfect memory.
It’s ghost harmonics: the essential character of the Appalachian mountains, filtered through particular life experience.
It’s Trance unforgetting.
It’s Metal precision.
Thank you for listening.
Killick Hinds lives in Athens, Georgia. His music is Appalachian Trance Metal with an emphasis on unquantifiable rhythms, intuitive intonation, and shamanistic ROYGBIV. He plays a variety of unusual stringed instruments (bowed H’arpeggione; Big Red harp guitar; 3rd bridge Harmonic Isolator; infinite sustain Vo-96; fretless guitar; quarter tone fretted guitar; banjo; 3-string one-holer; 6- & 7-string guitar) with a comprehensive approach to genres known and as-yet-unlabeled. Specific focus includes sympathetic string activity; microtonality; pantonality; natural harmonic fretting; playing between the fretting hand and nut; and emerging technologies to facilitate new musical pathways. Reinvention has been the constant throughout his creative output. He has toured extensively as a performer (since 1985, hundreds of club/gallery/school/festival appearances in Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Illinois, Colorado, California, Louisiana) and is an active organizer and promoter of lesser-heard music. He founded record label Solponticello in 2001, and now runs H(i)nds(i)ght Studio for his musical and written word pursuits. Pop-culture mashups and ancient and obscure forms infuse his music; his song titles are integral to the works they embody: they result from free association without censorship, refined until they capture the tenor of a given piece of music.
Killick has deeply rooted classical technique as a player, but broadens his music by stretching and contracting phrases temporally, conceptually, dynamically, and stylistically. The effect more closely resembles speech patterns and emotionally-drawn architecture than it does conventional Western music. Despite its eclectic nature, the music is surprisingly familiar and accessible to audiences of all ages and levels of musical involvement.
Outside interests and jobs have included yoga and lifeguard training, 13 years of public school writing assessment for the state of Georgia, 5 years working at Daily Groceries Food Co-op, oceanographic research, archaeology, psychology, philosophy, and religious and women's studies. Killick has a fascination with early 80s arcade games, plus a love for instruments and any tools that encourage linear expansion. At age 19 through the Sea Education Association, Killick sailed from New England to the Caribbean on the brigantine SSV Corwith Cramer. Travels to France, Costa Rica, Australia, Tahiti, Mexico, Canada (Ontario, New Brunswick, Québec, Newfoundland), and Morocco plus the first 3 years of his life in Japan are formative experiences. A near-death experience in 2008 and an active meditation practice (including a recent 10-day silent Vipassana meditation retreat) have greatly broadened his perspective and capacity for compassion. The primary sonic influences on Killick are animals, wind, water, fire, electrical hum, and silence.
Killick’s preferred performance vehicle is the solo concert, a “One (Sha)Man Band” channeling the muse in the fashion of shamanic ritual of old. Every performance is different, factoring the instrumentation and energy of the audience and space. Various strains of Killick’s training and enculturation appear in bespoke combinations with the likelihood of something (an approach, a texture, a rhythm, a juxtaposition) entirely new emerging. Shamanic presentation is characterized by sometimes abrupt shifts in mood, pulse, and harmony yet Killick prioritizes inviting dialogue infused with levity and sudden beauty.
In 2012 Killick published his first book, an autobiography about the creative process called The World For A Dying Antidote.
He has given masterclasses in musical improvisation at CalArts in Valencia CA, the University of Georgia Athens, and through the Frantasia Festival in Livermore Falls, Maine. Killick has co-presented with luthier Fred Carlson at the University of California, Santa Cruz as part of the International Society of Improvising Musicians 2009 conference. He has served as musical education guest in the Gwinnett & Athens-Clarke County school districts. Killick’s work has been featured in Guitar Player, Creative Loafing, Copper Press, Flagpole, Signal to Noise, among many other magazines, as well as online publications Unfretted, Guitar Moderne, Prepared Guitar, and New Music Box.
Killick was co-curator, along with Athens musician Julie Caldwell and MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellow Ken Vandermark, of the Athens Creative Media Encounter (ACME) Festival in 2004, centering around the music of pioneering free jazz saxophonist Peter Brötzmann. In 2010, Killick was southeastern tour coordinator and a performer for The Improvisor magazine’s 30th anniversary traveling concert series.
From 2002-2004, Killick organized The Butterfly Effect, a yearly concert series highlighting new music compositions by Athens composers. Killick also organized several Solponticello Nights and numerous large-scale concert promotions over the years, including the world premiere peformance of Wadada Leo Smith's Golden Quartet (attendance: 1,000!). Killick has showcased numerous local, national, and international performers for Athens concertgoers for more than 20 years.
With host Robb Holmes, Killick helped start the popular WUGA (www.wuga.org) radio and television program It's Friday (which in 2015 celebrated its 300th show), presenting local and regional, well-known and yet-to-be, musical acts of all types.
Killick performed and recorded his interpretation of Slayer’s thrash metal classic Reign In Blood on his 18-string H’arpeggione, and was a technical consultant and interviewee for the 33 1/3 series book about Reign In Blood by D.X. Ferris published by Bloomsbury.
With Pocketful of Claptonite, Killick has performed an Athens-centric cover of the underground classic Franklin Kiermyer album Solomon’s Daughter; Pharaoh Sanders’ saxophone role was played by Killick on guitar. Thunder O(h)m!, Crazy Hoarse, Killick & Monique, and Beverley Hinds are also Killick's groups.
Killick has played with many great musicians from around the world, including Monterrey, Mexico rock band The Warning (bassist/vocalist Alejandra Villarreal, guitarist/vocalist Daniela Villarreal, drummer/vocalist Paulina Villarreal), vocalist Monique Osorio, violinist Sahada Buckley, bassist Michael Manring, flautist Beto Cacao, drummer Kathleen Duffield, Haken Continuumist Arto Artinian, violist LaDonna Smith, vocalist Claire Campbell, vocalist Claire Dunphy, guitarist Colin Bragg, drummer Blake Helton, trumpeter Jeff Crouch, violinist Ezra Buchla, bassist Thomas Helton, guitarist Mary Halvorson, saxophonist Blaise Siwula, cellist/bassist Heather McIntosh, guitarist Jeff McLeod, guitarist Sándor Szabó, improviser Id M Theft Able, saxophonist/vocalist Louise D. E. Jensen, saxophonist Larry Ochs, drummer Ravish Momin, drummer Jamie DeRevere, fretless guitarist Adam Wilson, cellist Chelsea Dunn, bassist Darrin Cook, drummer John Norris, pianist Brad Bassler, guitarist/bassist Jamie Thomas, guitarist Charlie Rauh, trumpeter Liz Allbee, the Shaking Ray Levis, guitarist Tim Schroeder, electronic musician Harry Shaffer, bassist Tom Blancarte, bassist C.J. Boyd, pianist Scott Eggert, cellist Alec Livaditis, guitarist Henry Kaiser, Duet for Theremin & Lap Steel, guitarist Scott Baxendale, lap steel guitarist Susan Alcorn, poet Life the Griot, multi-instrumentalist Jon Francis, and bassist Peter Kowald, as well as Mastodon’s drummer Brann Dailor, filmmaker Erin Espelie, and musical projects with the Georgia Guitar Quartet, dancers, visual artists, multi-disciplinary creatives, and many, many others.
Killick has appeared on more than 200 commercially released recordings in various styles (many at Bandcamp), most of which feature Killick as executive producer, engineer, composer, and performer. Killick’s work as a designer includes his own solar-powered home; countless album project layouts; his full-body tattoo project; art direction with illustrator Neal Williams; a logo for legal consulting firm Law2sm, LLC; and his own “navigation wheel” logo. Collaborations with instrument builders Fred Carlson, Rick Toone, Lewis Waters, Thierry Andre, Harry Shaffer, Paul Vo, and Scott Baxendale, among others, have resulted in one-of-a-kind guitars to further explore idiosyncratic musical territory. In 2016, Killick received an Athens, Georgia Flagpole Music Award for the category of Avant-Garde.
Killick has been married since 2003, has two dogs, loves to hike, and is an advocate for healthy and local food, meditation, and solar power. He eats gluten-free (silly Celiac disease), every meal.