Private Robots (Julian Pivato & Seb Roberts) began their collaboration as a resistance to credible musicianship: two nodes in a network sending noise to signal. Sharing an acute sense of the irrational (touched by technophobia), improvisations of failed New Wave anthems and dubby deconstructions of danceable indie pop are what remain. With minimal tools, Private Robots mine for nuggets of nostalgic pop beauty, to melt, mold, forge, and shatter into a hallucinatory scrapheap of shuddering, scorched fragments. Not entirely unlike Throbbing Gristle covering Fairport Convention as The Flying Lizards, Private Robots describe humans and technologies that deserve each other. Poets Barrio TV is their first release.
Julian A M.P. is a multi-disciplinary artist who currently resides in Tkaronto. They are grateful to be able to live in the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples. Julian is a queer, trans-masculine, second generation, northern-European settler who was born in Amiskwacîwâskahikan (Edmonton). At 18 they moved across the country to attend The National Theatre School of Canada, and this experience of displacement from family and community alongside the demanding training program had a profound impact on their experience of identity, body, memory, and the senses. They followed theatre with degrees in music (voice, McGill University), studio arts (Concordia University) and an MFA (studio/sculpture) from School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Julian’s studio practice is situated alongside their membership in pandemic parenthood and in the casual, academic workforce. They work with language (failure), drawing, sound, video, performance and installation. They recently published Pictura: Essays on the Works of Roy Kiyooka, and released their first, full-length album, Poets Barrio TV as one-half of Private Robots.
Seb Roberts is a musician and sound engineer, currently based in Toronto. He has spent time as an improvisor, solo artist, and member of various bands in the U.S., Germany, and Japan. In Tokyo, Roberts also worked as a staff engineer at the renowned independent recording studio, Tsubame Studio, working with such iconoclastic acts as Z, Rebel One Excalibur, and Detrytus. His most recent solo release was 2017’s Gravedigger, and he is currently struggling to teach himself to play the tenor saxophone.