Sunday, December 20, 2009

12.19.2009, ftw

hot oatmeal and blueberries for brekkie, then after timely pause, i walked over to doc's. i'd seen jenkins in the market the other day and he said he had "some new shit, but nothing that's really up your alley." found an okay copy of the kink kronikles (which has english singles that you can't get anywhere else and besides, i'm kinda on a '60s pop kick, listening again to zombies odessey and oracle, brian wilson's smile, an' like that), a clean original flamin' groovies flamingo (i understand that this and teenage head have been reished lately and if i ever run into the latter i'm gonna have to cop it), and a reish third velvet underground album. all of this plus an important piece of costuming for my sweetie for a party we're going to next week. in the new year, i gotta start limiting my visits to maybe one a month, but we'll see.

got a stack of new cd's to review from fully altered media, which in the fullness of time will get reviewed and pitched to the fw weekly.

ops checked my HIO rig (using the hughes & kettner vice the fender because i can't even imagine loading the twin upstairs at 1919 hemphill). found that while i really dig the sound of the twin more, it's nice to be able to move all my shit in one load, like the old wednesday nights at the wreck when i was using the cube 60. using the overdrive channel on the h&k and the "blues" setting on my marshall bluesbreaker, i was able to get some truly disgusting tones, perfect for the heavy, drony thang terry was wanting to try for this show. also packed the mxr phase 90 because it adds a pulse thing to feedback (which you can actualy hear on the gunslingers record) that ray used to sing along with before i stopped packing it for the stoogeband. also bringing the vox wah, e-bow, and my 3/4" socket wrench (because i seem to have lost my metal slide).

had chinese takeout from szechuan with terry and jo, who left for montgomery this morning. always good to hang out with them. terry took jo home, so she could take their dogs to the kennel, and came back to pick me up for drinkie-talkie at the chat room. we loaded my shit in his short. my sweetie would meet us at 1919 later.

hadn't been to the chat in ages. not many people there, just cap'n dave and chuck brown and some show about police chases on the tv.

i'm ashamed to say i'd never set foot in 1919 hemphill before this occasion. hard to believe they've been there seven years now. the spot is completely volunteer-run, and the ones we met were some nice, committed folks. they had a propane heater in the upstairs area where we'd be playing -- a bigger spot than i'd anticipated, with house p.a. to boot. ramsey sprague never made it, so for this occasion, HIO was terry, hickey, hembree, sarah alexander, michael briggs, michael chamy, and your humble chronicler o' events. but first, breaking light and zeitmorder.

breaking light is kavin allenson, solo guitarist and sometime collaborator of bill pohl and darrin kobetich's, playing electric guitar with loops. kavin's a bluesy player with lots of classic rock roots, and his first episode was kinda floydian, using an e-bow and slide in tandem with lots more finesse than i'd display later. then he set up a rhythm by tapping on the damped strings before layering a bunch of parts, over which he'd improv. he told me to give him a signal five minutes before he needed to stop, and after i did, he played a swelling, hymn-like piece that was the high point of his set.

zeitmorder is jon teague's solo synth project. he was supposed to roll it out at firehouse gallery back in may, but that didn't eventuate. still waiting for a release of recordings, too, on nathan brown's 8-track label, but then i couldn't listen to 'em anyway. duh. last time i spoke to jon about it, he was talking about dressing up as his dad in the suit he wore to mustachio last year, but after setting up a daunting array of modules and patch cords, he donned a bundeswehr camouflage jacket with ski mask and goggles for a kind of germanic commando ninja effect and started his performance. the first episode had a world war II aerial bombardment kind of feel, replete with droning bass tones and howling sirens. then he set up some break beats and played kraftwerk-like synth lines over them, a sort of apocalyptic dance music, and followed it with a lyrical episode. the music had some visceral and emotional weight; the rhythmic component really made it work, along with the thrill of watching him orchestrate it in real time (a one-man improvising orchestra, if you will). it also reminded me a great deal of the great tyrant. no surprise.

after timely pause, HIO got started. later on, herb levy told me (and i agree) that it worked well because everyone had their own amplification, rather than relying on the p.a. the only thing i wish i'd done differently was having a mic set up so hembree could play his small instruments. as it was, he played a bit of percussion, but mainly stuck to bass. i'd have had him and hickey turn up, too. oh well. i was mainly responding to what sarah and michael b. were doing with their voices and chaos pedals, as well as hembree when i could hear him. chamy created big, powerful washes of sound, and i alternated between straight guitar with lotsa f/x, e-bow, string scraping, sonny sharrock chaos-slide, and feedback. hembree recorded audio and terry shot video. we'll hear/see 'em sometime in 2010.

we've got recordings coming up on 12.27 and 1.15, and shows on 1.30 (1919 again), mid-february in denton, and 2.28 at lola's 6th (good show showcase). as terry says, it'll be interesting to hear what we sound like by the end of february.

my sweetie split before we wrapped so she wouldn't leave jesse the painter and his girl becky sitting at benito's. terry carried me and my shit over there, then joined us for a late dinner (he'd never been to benito's before either). always good to see our friends, and hoping to set up a dinner with them at piola's soon. i can't remember a better day. no headache, either.


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