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Monday, April 30, 2012

Electroluminati #11

This was a cool show with lots of small, long sets.  Coyotes by the Way was first with spooky sounds like a creaking haunted house collapsing.  Joe played a guitar with a light bulb that was smashed eventually.  Seth provided screeching noises and gallumphed muffling.  Towards the end he slashed up his briefcase and stepped on it.  Coyotes by the Way's set moved forward continuously and brought the audience along excitingly.  After the haunted krautrock of the beginning there was some spooky gothic ambiance which was followed by a strange glitching tribal rhythm and creepy vocals surrounded by shaking chains.  Another great Coyotes set.

 Buoyhood brought more spookiness to the stage with his ambient synth set of sounds from the barren forests of the northern tundra (he is wearing a hood because it is so cold up there).  His set was filled with soothing drones, cold with mist and dew.  It was sometimes soothing and sometimes like the coming of a glistening, glowing space vessel.  At times it could even be angelic and I got a little bored towards the end.  Buoyhood is cool however and he should play some more shows.


Celebrator is like a power electronics band from Philadelphia.  Condensed industrial soundscapes rose out from the ground like salty brine with harsh vocals over top.  I feel like it should have been louder, but they were very cool.  Sometimes cries sounded off in the background as machines over loaded near to us; towards the end things softened into more relaxed post-broken wilderness with nothing on the other side of the ravine.  Reminded me of Whitehouse and Tadoma.

Wasp Nest Head Dress played a sour-apple colored guitar, but he started off with a less walled circuit bent attack similar to his earliest solo albums.  His set ended the night with doom and sludgey sparseness that would progress into chaos via distorted vocals.  Feedback appeared and cut through the sound before an actual chord progression arose; it was very cool.  He probably should have been a little louder or a little more bassy.  The only continual sound was like that of a crackling fire.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Psychic Boots' Return/Stop Walking

On March 10th it was friend Ocasia's 21st birthday.  We ended up going to Gooski's to see some cool bands.


First up was the pretty cool band Hot Dog Forest.  They opened for R. Stevie Moore last year, but I was late and missed them.  They are opening for him again next month.  Their set at Gooski's was good, but there were some parts that kept going on and on.  Hot Dog Forest is like one of those late nineties bands that everybody likes that I know nothing about; they are sort of like Modest Mouse.


Skinless Boneless was second.  They were not as angular and cool as usual; there was still all of the briefness, but not all of the nervous, speed-freak fury.  This was the second time that I saw them with their new members since there set was prematurely ended at the Shop in December.  Skinless Boneless was good, but not up to the standard that I fell they're usually at; they were probably the worst band of the night (everyone thought that this was hilarious when I said this after the show, but I'm not sure that it is even true; everybody was sort of equal).


My friends left some time around when Psychic Boots took to the stage, their first show back in Pittsburgh and the end of a short tour.  I had never heard them before, but they were very good; rock/noise/grunge and sort of like Jane's Addiction, but not at all actually.  They could probably be more comparable to Sonic Youth, but that doesn't make sense.  They played hard for a very long time, but after each song seemed so composed.  There were cool melodies and lots of dissonance; psychedelic sludge forever!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Satyr/Elfeim's Spring 2012

Before we get into March reviews here's a list of upcoming shows that I'm playing
  • April 19th at Garfield Artworks with Chris Corsano and Antithesis
  • April 20th at the Shop with Not the Wind Not the Flag, Slow-Tongued Beauty, David Sutton, and Bererberg
  • April 25th at Assemble with Barnacle Geese, Trogpite, and Wasp Nest Head DressEDIT: This was just canceled due to the touring bands new work schedule
  • May 14th at Garfield Artworks with Mu, Ashochious, and Poor Kitty
There is also a chance of me playing a show on April 21st at Gopher Hole, but I'm not sure if that's what I'll do yet.

I'll have copies of the new Americana album and also the self-titled Poor Kitty album at these.
May will probably bring more releases from ··— as well, most likely physical versions of Belt of Venus' Album+Archive or Satyr/Elfheim's 2011 Past Lives.

Last week I just did very dry "standup" reviewing records on stage for the Weird Paul Rock Band 99¢ Variety Show.  Now it looks like I'm also doing a photo shoot for the band Dumplings featuring members of Middle Children and the Weird Paul Rock Band.

It's a pretty busy Spring

Finite February




On February 17th Hunted Creatures ended their week long residency at Future Tenant with a weird show there.  They ended up playing two sets, first with Burnout Warcry and second with D.S. Miller and Mike Kasunic.  The first one was pretty cool, but very short and everybody seemed sort of confused.  The second set was longish and worked pretty well.  Fogged Out, Mike Kasunic's new solo project, played next.  He was really great, recalling the glorious baritone of Tusk Lord, and going through a few different music styles.  Afterwards Ben Bowman appeared and did some offensive/ironic/annoying radio rap and stabbed a table with a big knife.


On the 24th of February I went to see Teenage Mysticism at Garfield Artworks.  Spencer Kingman, who was in the Dirty Projectors at some point, played first.  His songs were good, but his set was so long and they all sounded the same.  Next was Rose & Sara who were okay, but seemed distracted maybe.  They usually are a lot better.  Third was the touring band, Teenage Mysticism, who were like the New York Dolls and the Ramones.  They played romantic garage rock/punk with emotionally unstable vocals.  The vocalist put on makeup towards the start of the set.  They were super cool.  Last was the Octeoblasts who I had never heard of before, but they are apparently from Pittsburgh somewhere. They played fast, exciting punk music with dead pan vocals and sort of sounded like the Swell Maps song "New York."  I hope they play some more shows because I'd like to see them some more.

Here are sounds (really just Fogged Out because I forgot my recorder for the Teenage Mysticism show).

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Notaform at MWFA

On February 25th a cool show happened at Most Wanted Fine Art Gallery in Garfield; it was booked by my friend Dawn.  A lot of noise bands played and it was like a mini-festival.  This was also Dire Wolves final last show.


This is a bad picture of Maenads (Amy Hoffmann from Hunted Creatures) who played first.  I got there a little late and only saw 4 minutes or so, but it was a really good set with a large similarity to certain Satyr/Elfheim or the Tchaikovsky composition Swan Lake.  Looped violin and bowed objects in the shadows of the room.  It was the only time that I've ever seen her play, but I hope she does so again soon.


Second up, RJ Myato tried to play, but had a lot of trouble with his setup.  Originally it was far too quiet, but he quickly also realized that something else was wrong; it turned out that a cable wasn't in the whole way.  After all of the comedy he dedicated his set to Dire Wolves and quickly the named beasts started to howl from RJ's iPod.  He did a short set of some more dynamic noise stuff than usual, but looked as if he was a tiny child playing with toys.  It was a cool dichotomy.


Next was the Dire Wolves themselves actually playing their swan song to Pittsburgh, but not at all Swan Lake sounding.  Daphne played trumpet and had a tiny guitar amplifier in the back of her pants.  The guitar player and her walked around the circling near me, but sometimes venturing towards the crowd.  Jeffrey walked all around, bustling to and fro, entering and leaving the audience at every turn.  Everything sounded great too; a late night chaos sound.  I wish that they could play somewhere here again, but it appears that this is so long to Dire Wolves, at least until the farewell tour.


For the next part of this very eclectic show Margaret Cox played a set that bordered on long, but never became a chore.  A lot of tiny devices and machines were carefully manipulated to produce microscopic sounds brought to our eyes by means of amplifiers.  It reminded me of toothpaste, drains, drills, and brushes; the sounds of slimes oozing into a closing, rusty vent.  She was really great as always.


For the fifth band/musician/whatever Notaform, who came all the way from Ontario, showed a video and played some dance/electronica/noise with an amazing video.  Colors and lights fused into scenes of people and places fused back into lights and colors and stars; it was like waking nights asleep and dreaming and fit her music well. Notaform's music was slow and eerie like a growing nightmare of fungus taking over yr refrigerator.  Voices, bird sounds, and instrumental passages faded in and out like so many distant ghosts.  Occasionally she would venture into straight noise or would act more like a DJ, but it all worked well.  I hope to see more of this collage work in the future.


Finally 8Cylinder played a laptop set of industrial noise stuff.  He went on  for half an hour, which was maybe too long (Notaform herself played for 40 minutes which was also a little too long).  8Cylinder ranged from hard beats with synth parts to more ambient sections of spaceship abduction sound effects and graphical glitching errors to fuzzed out computer tunes.  He had an eerie sound as well, like the soundtrack to Tetsuo: the Iron Man, but he was maybe too technical, too distant, or too cold, staring dead on into his 40K grafiti'd laptop's screen while he brought the hard edged sounds and metal grinding rhythms.  It was cool though and I'd like to see more of his stuff.


Here is everyone's sets from the entire show. Have fun/check it out.