Arnold Dreyblatt's compositions have been recorded for such leading avant-garde music labels as Hat Hut, Tzadik and Table of Elements. The New York native studied film and video at SUNY with Woody and Steina Vasulka, and earned his masters from the Institute for Media Studies. In the mid-'70s, he studied composition with Pauline Oliveros and LaMonte Young, then learned from Alvin Lucier until getting his masters in composition in 1982. By that time, Dreyblatt had already been directing his own music ensemble, the Orchestra of Excited Strings, for three years. In 1984, he moved to Europe where, in addition to composing, he began using texts and images in his installations and performances. He has received numerous grants and stipends including the Overbrook Foundation, and the Philip Morris Art Prize. Dreyblatt has been a guest composer at Amsterdam's STEIM, Berlin's Kunstlerhaus Bethanien and more. He has been commissioned by Ars Electronica, Podewil/US Arts Festival, as well as for his production 'Who's Who in Central & East Europe 1933' for Berlin's DAAD-Inventionen '91. He has also created two independent yet interrelated art works in collaboration with the University of Lüneburg's Kulturinformatik Department, entitled "Who's Who in Central & East Europe 1933" and "Memory Arena." As of the late 1990's, Dreyblatt still resided in Berlin.
Arnold Dreyblatt's 1995 Tzadik release, Animal Magnetism, includes many juxtaposed sections of repeating, skip-like structures that come off in a simple, lovely way. It is entirely likable with a lilting, pots-and-pans schizophrenia that insists we hear what normally doesn't work, what normally isn't called art. Embedded with quirk-pop elements, the pieces resemble deconstructed dance tunes reflected in a room full of mirrors. Slightly carnival moments, tweaked ska counter rhythms, percussive foregrounds overlying slide effects backgrounds, barely-contained marching band funk - all these are part of Dreyblatt's musical world. (Joslyn Layne)