Unnatural Ways is the main project of Brooklyn-based guitarist Ava Mendoza. The group was originally formed in early 2012 in her longtime home of Oakland, CA as a trio with west coast musicians Dominique Leone- keys and Nick Tamburro (Dead Science)- drums. The trio toured steadily in the U.S. and Europe before Mendoza relocated to NY in 2013. Soon after the move, she reformed the group with NY musicians, and the new lineup toured in the U.S., Canada and Europe surrounding performances at the 2014 Victoriaville Festival in Canada and the 2014 Moers Festival in Germany. The current trio of Mendoza- guitar, vox / Tim Dahl (Lydia Lunch, Child Abuse, Yusef Lateef)- bass /Max Jaffe (Normal Love, Killer Bob) has developed a highly personal sound; sharp, heavy, and psychedelic. Drawing from complex rock, avant jazz and warped blues music, the players push the boundaries of their own vocabularies and of the written music to put on powerful and unpredictable live shows. The self-titled Unnatural Ways full-length LP will be issued in Feb. 2015 by the New Atlantis label (William Hooker, Microwaves, Elliott Sharp). A full-length CD release by the new lineup on John Zorn’s Tzadik label is slated for late 2015.

UPCOMING SHOWS: see Ava Mendoza Calendar

"like lurching freak-out cyclo-metal, Beefheartian free jazz and bent psych(opath)edelic guitar frenzy melded together into one sick rampage, nothing like it around at the moment but it's scary, like Henry Cow and Butthole Surfers at a pig fucking contest in some dark woods... there's shades of weird dusty blues, Chris Corsano-esque mayhem, Stooges dirt and a right brooding atmosphere throughout, all this laced with real freewheeling lysergic mischief and played with the gleeful adventure of improvising spirits… a blast, it reeks of total loose-limbed, bloody minded conviction!" -- NormanRecords "they display an uncanny connection throughout their triumphant recording, dynamically intertwined and unbelievably locked in with one another rhythmically (amazing, considering the malestroms provided by each at numerous times throughout the album)… I'm not sure anyone's ever made jazz quite this way before (I guess something like John McLaughlin comes sort of close), and come to think of it even more, this album fucking rules." -- Tiny Mix Tapes

"Ms. Mendoza has been garnering accolades for her fine, distinctive guitar work… Electric bass whiz Tim Dahl is also another fine force to be reckoned with… Drummer Nick Podgurski is the master of the slow-burning drum style… Right from the gitgo, the trio erupted with an intense post-psych, power trio force. Ms. Mendoza played with a strong Fripp-like sustained tone, while the trio had a Massacre-like primal attack… This was an amazing set that many folks will be talking about for a long while especially as Ms. Mendoza's star is till rising higher.” -- Downtown Music Gallery on Unnatural Ways' Victoriaville 2014 set

"a heavy-rocking outfit that featured some gorgeously aggressive interplay between Mendoza and Dahl, Mendoza spitting out shards of notes that Dahl answered with thunderous aplomb.” -- All About Jazz



My name is AVA MENDOZA. I play guitars and stompboxes and write music. Currently I'm based out of Brooklyn, NY. I have played guitar for most of my life and been active for the last decade playing my own music and in many different groups. In any context I try to bring expressivity, energy and a wide sonic range to the music I play. I've toured throughout the U.S. and Europe and recorded or performed with a broad spectrum of musicians including singer Carla Bozulich (The Geraldine Fibbers, Evangelista), Fred Frith (Massacre, Henry Cow, Art Bears), Nels Cline, Weasel Walter, Tune-Yards, and more. I've played on recordings released by labels Weird Forest, Tzadik, Clean Feed, NotTwo, ugEXPLODE, Resipiscent, New Atlantis, and others. Friendly critics have called me "Oakland's avant-jazz virtuoso" (Village Voice), "a versatile and virtuosic guitarist" (The San Francisco Film Society), "a wizard on a semi-circle of effects pedals, but… equally adept with FX-less technique," (Lars Gotrich, A Blog Supreme/NPR Jazz). www.avamendozamusic.com

TIM DAHL is a composer and professional electric and double bass player, vocalist, and keyboardist living in New York City. He is best known as the frontman and bass player of the noise-rock band Child Abuse and bass player of the defunct avant-jazz group The Hub. He also writes and performs for the jazz ensemble Pulverize The Sound and the rock band Lydia Lunch's Retrovirus. Dahl has toured extensively throughout North America, Europe and Japan. He has performed with many notable musicians, composers and performers including Yusef Lateef, Archie Shepp, Eugene Chadbourne, Lydia Lunch, Tatsuya Yoshida, Von Freeman, Stanley Jordan, Mary Halvorson, Malcolm Mooney, Marc Ribot, Hamid Drake, Elliot Sharp, Weasel Walter, Marni Nixon, Peter Evans, Kevin Shea, Mick Barr, Jan Terri etc. http://timdahlmusic.com

MAX JAFFE is a drummer and composer based in Brooklyn, NY. He is dedicated to music that occupies the grey areas between established genres and defies easy categorization. Originally hailing from the San Francisco Bay Area, he began learning how to play drums from his father by the age of 6 and was performing in the Bay Area by the time he was an adolescent. Jaffe descended upon New York City in 2007 to attend the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, where he studied with Amir Ziv, Gerry Hemingway, John Hollenbeck, Jane Ira Bloom, Reggie Workman, and Tyshawn Sorey. After earning his B.F.A., he committed himself to engaging with the thriving and creative musical community in Brooklyn. He is a founding member of killer BOB, with whom he composes and sings, as well as plays drums. He has also been fortunate to collaborate and tour with bands Normal Love, Leverage Models, The Dreebs, Man Forever, Vape Drip, and musicians Shahzad Ismaily, Aaron Roche, Amir Ziv, Jessica Pavone, Brandon Seabrook, Brandon Lopez, Jordan McLean (Antibalas/FELA! The Musical), Kenny Wollesen, Greg Saunier (Deerhoof), Steve Marion (Delicate Steve), Seth Olinsky (Akron/Family, Cy Dune), and Doug Wieselman. He performs solo material under the moniker "(( \+++/ ))", maxjhinjaffe.tumblr.com


booking: Ava Mendoza, ava(dot)mendoza(at)gmail.com