More or less, as typed into Taylor Benjamin Burgess‘ CrackBerry throughout the night:
In tents! Some people have brought tents to sleep over for this night, the last show of Absent Sound, as Rob Menard is relocating to Montreal. It seems to be a pretty low-key artsy thing, with film loops being projected on the bands. The ten dollar cover definitely is going to weed some people out—but the motley lineup and the legacy of Absent Sound is sure to make an interesting night, if nothing else.
Fuck! I missed SeaFreezing!
Philia—top notch discordant echoes—followed by delay’d hand drum. Now he’s pulled up some kinda funky house beat—and playing trumpet over it. Earlier, his atonal licks—he made them work. No, no, it was definitely more like play.
The Blisters—Fuck, how many guitars are in this band? Oh, four, including a bass. And a backup singer? I’m into it. Yup, they got the look, the Fender surf guitars, the blazer, the round sunglasses, the reverb
They’re playing their first song—Harmonies yes but feedback problems
K they just tore the roof off this thing with that water song of theirs.
We are being transported—to a place of 90s fuzzpop goodness, and Brian Jonestown psychedelia.
A MBV cover? Srsly? Good thing they can do “Only Shallow” justice, considering that song is as old as the members of this band. The song is winding down. Big cheers, big cheers. They are too cool for me so I am going to be too cool for them, I am writing on my BlackBerry in one hand and snapping my applause with my other.
Now they’re doing a cover of Deerhunter. Cool stuff, well done.
SoHoly HeadCase—electronic drums, looping his straight-laced post-punk. Vocal swoops and shwoops. Ever-arcing upwards. Synthpop backing with bouncy guitars. There are some people watching very intensely—something’s going on here that I don’t quite yet understand, Mr. Jones.
Dust Adam Dust, forever cheery! Twee with some punch! They stitch together pieces of hooks rapidstitch
Singing “You know you’ve got to be” over and over, shooting their instruments off like guns, singing “The one who holds their head up!”
Talked to Hanec a.k.a. Philia, told him that his set seemed superficial, though this particular word eluded me and I shot many other phrases instead like, “on the surface” and “for the sake of aesthetics,” citing his use of beats. So he understood my process of thinking behind this usually detrimental word, and did not get offended. He maintained that, to make noise music is to choose the more personal route.
Tim Hoover—there’s a half circle of partyers standing tight around the stage, holding their six packs, chilling n staring. Oddly appropriate.
Hanec had talked me into dooring. DAD’s guitarist Jason Hovland and the Blisters’ Daniel Monkman were trading emails. I flippantly confronted DAD keyboardist Anna Hovland on her comment “You need girl writing” as gender essentialist and Jason responded, “But she can make her o’s look like little hearts!” lulz
Around this time, i.e. the present moment, which has now become a minute ago relative to writing the word which will signify this time being the word this, people are erupting with dancing, laughing etc. etc. at an abnormal pace—not to say we are ignoring Tim Hoover’s wonderful piece, but this is certainly no ego death. If anything it is an ego strengthening in which, not all, but many were participating. Though even simple spectators must be thinking, noticing an abundance of people paying no attention to his down-tempo hip hop/post-rock.
2:12 a.m. and absent sound is only taking the stage now. Wtf bros—but getting people to set up tents is a not-so-subtle hint that we’re in it for the long haul. Dobbs keeps saying “This One” and looks rather dashing in his fur jacket and no shirt. “This one.” I am so glad that I am in a band with this man! “This one.” Have you HEARD Softcore yet? We’re awesome! “This one.”
Absent Sound is finally ending their sound check—to end their collective career, I guess. I’ve heard no word if this is hiatus or break-up. Situated only cuz Rob Menard is moving to Montreal I guess. Smooth transition into this—what is this?! Menard’s on some riff, delay’d up, and Fort’s guitar is on melody duties. Dobbs is off in post-rock La La Land and Castle is all flourish on cymbals yet keeping this slowbuild anchored. I am stopping to enjoy this, then shall continue. Oh but the subtle change! I was only telling Dobbs today of how a bass can undermine a chord progression—and how, it staring me in the face now, obvious that I need not be telling
Holy shit, Absent Sound—they’re putting the Blisters in terms of a Wall of Sound, though this is a beast of a very different nature.
Reminder to mention the acts of communion—the cookie, the beers, the door, the film, smokes, and the tents.
Just as interest wanes, the wall disappears.
I pride myself on getting to know the characters of the music scene here—yet at the moment I’ve realized what a total mystery that Rob is to me.
3:00 a.m. and they’re still churning away slowburn into the night.
Just came in after their set. Talked outside about the chills we collectively got. Hudson described his band’s show at Sam’s Place earlier tonight and how, managing to relearn his guitar after one of the whammy bar springs came off, solicited chills all around. This Heat is playing—I compliment Dobbs on the tunes but this is Menard’s choice—not a playlist or an mp3 player, but the whole of Deceit.
Mahog Frog play some fucking surf—what?! Has it really been that long since I’ve listened to this beautiful beauty! I heard their drummer is quite excited about their upcoming record, and that apparently he is a tough cookie to please.