performance :: ariel pink

last night i went to knitting factory to check out the ariel pink show. i was set for a do or die night, i've never seen him live, but have heard horror stories of his live performance at tonic last year, from friends. but i love ariel's records so much, i just had to see it for myself. maybe he'd try to redeem himself? ariel started his set basically just singing karaoke and playing air keyboard to his songs on his 4 track. popping in tapes for every song. his cartoony stage shy presence and scruffy look, enhance the impressions he leaves from his albums. totally lives up to the trashy silence of the lambs drag persona he paints in his 'wait for kate' video. the live performance was flawed, but i wasn't searching for a rock show, any performance with too much prerecorded material is typically a failed media for presentation. i was more just wanting to put a face to the music. i was thrilled to hear some songs i've never heard before.

rusty santos started off the night. really enjoyed his set. he played fx vocals and guitar over his boss sampler, with a drummer accompaning. his stage presence immediately takes over, tantrum-fit-squirming and jumping to his recordings. for me, some of his songs had a xiu xiu air to it for a sec, and later some animal collective flavored antics, him being part of that sound, his credits include contributing on production to alot of animal collective and ariel pink material. some of it was really melodically beautiful and noisy.

ariel pink is foremost a recording songwriter genius, not a performance artist; that's where his fans suffer. everyone dreams of him organizing a full rehearsed live band to perform his orchestrations. but if ariel's car gets impounded because can't even pay his parking tickets as in 'house arrest,' i don't come to the show with any expectation other then a loosely thrown together set. maybe if emily dickinson was put on stage and read her poetry to us, it wouldn't resonate. its best form, only as mental media? exceptor joined the stage for an overhaul sound experiment. nothing really errupted from their improv that caught my ear, but it was fun to people watch. they bring some random fruit on stage for every set i've seen so far. that's deep. overall i was really glad to see this show and glad to just put the myth for myself to rest. no doubt in my mind ariel's a musical genius. i'll always love his albums. the show just confirmed that it was the garbage monster who's been singing all those timeless lo-fi artless pop/motown/80's/70's/can't-put-my-finger-on-it songs to me. i recorded it on my md, but unfortunately it's all distorted. since hi-fi never was part of ariel's aesthetic, the poor recording probably just lends to the effect:

:: night time is great
:: let's build a campfire there
:: she's my girlfriend

:: ariel pink online mp3's ::
:: jules lost his jewels
:: helen
:: wait for kate


brooklyn hospitality :: drawing party

on sunday, tamin and nobuko hosted a drawing party at their apartment. trev, sawako, kinya, and other fellow brooklyn pals of the hosts whipped out their creative weapons and went to town with paper, markers, drills, hot glue, etc. nobuko made the best homemade curry i've had in awhile, along with some awesome avocado dressing salad. i made karashi zuke, which was pretty well accepted i guess by the surrounding stomachs. later we all trekked to the dollar store to get more props.

kinya started making sculptures out of the dollar store toys, and everyone pretty much caught on. i was stuck to my medium, sketch. trev made this mutated genetically altered tigersaurus toy, by slicing heads and supergluing, and there was this cute egganimal bobbly thing too. the drawing party was the most relaxed sunday afternoon i've spent in a long long time. long moments of silence when arting it up, tea and sake, relaxed conversation and giggles, and uncomparable hospitality. maybe i'm starting to get the brooklyn bug too...


radio play :: alias pail

dj emily is going to play "yo sis!" by alias pail again at breakthru radio. at the beginning of the valentine's day show, she gives me a shout out. hell yes!! shout out = good. helene lamachere sings back up for me. click here for tuesday's playlist

:: listen to blurb right before 'yo sis!' plays
:: listen to 'yo sis!'


performance :: laptop lizards vs. the blizzard

went to tonic with anthony to check out sawako's cd release show. i stepped in a snow puddle! dah! but luckily on blizzard days i always wrap my feet in grocery bags before putting on my shoes. cheap? yes. :) that's my style. a dedicated group of attendees gave full attention and respect to the players. everything was whisper mode. laptop music is all about subtleties of sound creation, and i guess the audience already knew that coming in. chairs were lined up front to make everyone comfortable and the acoustics of tonic really lent to every performer. the set started out with a computer improv piece by paul dickow (aka strategy aka dj p. disco). taylor deupree & kenneth kirschner did a piano computer altered set next.

i really liked the delicate looping and fx taylor did with the piece. it had a nice live sense to it with a soundtracky mystery thriller air to it. sawako ended the night with really cool visuals by chika. i really enjoyed her field recordings and electronics, and putting in those high frequencies at the end of some pieces really was amazing.

with the exception of paul (who runs community library), all the artists are from the record label 12k, an institution that specializes in releasing computer and experimental ambient music. laptop music is new to me, but i definitely say intricate visuals for laptop music grow the performance for their realm like adding a live drummer to any solo show. it has presence.

:: md recording of show (sorry for the banter!) ::
:: listen to strategy's first song
:: listen to strategy's second song
:: listen to taylor and kenneth
:: listen to sawako

:: watch short clips of sawako's visual during her performance ::


performance :: glasshouse gallery

on thursday i went to glasshouse gallery in williamsburg to see the prism concert series. prism is when a bunch of bands set up and play short sets and rotate. each set is maybe five to fifteen minutes long. loring played another great set of her vocal loops. glasshouse is getting crazier and crazier with their decor. haunted art house nickelodeon explosion. liek also played, toting his token blue suitcase of fx. he should name it. unfortunately i missed his first set with nick assisting him. other bands performing that night included kabloona, oriental skulls (watch video), and rolyn hu-doo / doctor hu-voo.

:: listen to loring's first set (5.40 min)
:: listen to liek's second set (16.17 min)
:: listen to loring's second set (6.33 min)



alias pail music :: yo sis! redo

way back before susi left for thailand peace corps, i wrote her a song for her birthday. since then, there's always been a lingering thought about the chorus lyrics being pretty weak. i agree. i've redone the vocal track and changed the lyrics, and i'm definitely happier with it. helene, my one and only french connection, sings back up. yo sis! was my attempt to write the best sister song for susi. it's just hard to make something endearing but avoid the cheesy lyrics. i'll probably always be rewriting this one. i love her so much, and this song is a reminder for her, that i'm always there, in her iPod ears : )

the best sister song ever written i think is by antony and the johnsons, sister (video). that was a real tearjerker the first time i saw it!

:: listen to yo sis! (by alias pail)
:: listen to sister (by anthony and the johnsons)


alias pail pals :: myspacing

on monday night i grabbed some dallas bbq with kyoka, tamin and nobuko. texas sized margaritas all around. woo hoo! i had so much fun meeting these musicians. talking to kyoka about the songwriting process and how these girls get all their noises. tamin and nobuko are whiskey gods. we went to APT, me on tequila mockingbird, them on whiskey. tamin is a photographer by heart, network security engineer by day. split career personality? i can relate, but is network talk still sparky talk? maybe a dialect? hmm we'll have to arm wrestle on it, again. kyoka took a flight to los angeles the next morn to play a show.

i was turned on to kyoka's and nobuko's music by myspacin' and trevor from music related (and of pandatone). kyoka and nobuko do electronic experimental music as solo artists, but also have their own collaboration project called groopies. this year nobuko will have her first usa release of off trevor's label, music related. i highly recommend checking out the website, trevor specializes in releasing mostly underground japanese musicians. the site has an awesome link section, where i usually spend too much time browsing. check out the media by his other artists, such as luminous orange, shugo tokumaru, and macdonald duck eclair.

:: listen to pandatone
visit myspace music :: kyoka visit myspace music :: nobuko

performance :: sculpture center

on sunday i went with julz to the sculpture center to check out a experimental music/art presentation thingamabob. anya gallaccio's 'one art' was the backdrop for the performance, a disassembled and reconstructed dead weeping cherry tree. it looked like a frankenstein tree chained to the walls, with bolts in its branches and limbs. the no neck blues band along with other dance performers played for about an hour. each member slowly assembled into the set and added their noise/performance/music/dance to the stage until it became full clamor. mix up improv modern dance performance, noise making, music smashing. i couldn't help but feel sad, the tree just looked so sad. for me, the performance took on a nightmarish quality to it, very dark. the nice thing was since the sculpture center is a huge open space with concrete floor you could really enjoy the acoustics and mix match of sounds and noises. pete (mr. organizer of event) said the performance was in reference to a movie, charisma by kurosawa.

:: listen to no neck blues band ::


performance :: cheyenne

went to mercury lounge last night to scope out cheyenne, the band that ben is playing keys for now. a nice surprise was the opener, the remains of brian borcherdt. the lead singer has a beautiful voice. i'm definitely gonna check them out again, but i think they change their band name often, he mentioned playing tonite at bowery under the title holy fuck. or maybe i missed out on an inside joke? when cheyenne came on the crowd had already filled in.

cheyenne's songs have an immediate genuine songwriting quality to them. most of the songs are midtempo or slow, all bringing focus to the lead singer's voice and lyrics. tight set. a perfect balance of back up instruments with the keys and steel slide. of course i was glad to see ben play. i love his stage presence and sensuality when he plays, keeping the groove with every song in his movements. this was an all star oklahoma night. full oklahoma band and my friends and I, the okie crew. midwest takeover? for one night, yes.

:: listen to cheyenne
:: listen to brian borcherdt