Friday, August 22, 2014

Sediment Arts & RVA Noise Present Experimental Music & Sonic Art from Container & Jason Lescalleet - RVA MAG


Posted by: Necci – Aug 22, 2014


Over the next couple of weeks, Sediment Arts Gallery will be partnering with RVA Noise to bring two different performances featuring some of the leading creators of experimental noise currently working in the scene today. This will begin on Friday, August 29 with a performance from Providence, RI's Container, followed by an evening with Jason Lescalleet on Sunday, September 7.

Container has origins the basement noise ghetto, playing raw bare bones pulsing techno through a drum machine “groovebox” with spacefuckery feedback coming from a Tascam cassette 4-track recorder--the basement noise ghetto’s omnipresent consumer electronic home studio. Since his first 12”, Container tracks have resembled early Chicago acid house and Detroit techno dance cuts; think Ca$hmere’s “The Percolator”, melted down to Black Dice level.

Container’s “Acclimator” and “Perforate” are totally in the acid house zone, almost fitting into that Psychic TV fantasy--the “Jack the Tab” mirage, where warehouse industrial zone drowns in psychedelic techno repetition. Basic is brutal. Relentless disco drum machine beats, constant simple bass groove, and live feedback. Container is actually super danceable, much moreso than most of what circulates in the noise crowd these days. This is why Container has been able to transcend the warehouse/basement noise ghetto and make the festival circuit, playing actual European danceclubs, sealed with the approval of a set at Boiler Room, the UK based barometer of DJs worth partying with.

Last time he was in town, Container played the cramped Auxiliary basement space. This time, he’s getting the special event treatment in the clean, white-walled, high-ceilinged Sediment Gallery space at 208 E. Grace St in the Arts District. How many other downtown galleries will host Boiler Room-approved raw noise techno gigs?

Also coming down from Container’s hometown will be the freaky performance art/dark analog techno of Timeghost. Reason for anticipation of Timeghost’s performance aesthetic can be found in his quote to the Boston Hassle site: “I have new devices to run electrical current through my body and synthesizers. I had my face pierced to create port holes for a mouth-controlled voltage attenuator I built.” Container plays with the most appropriate local support, Mutwawa, who jam an even more melted down, bad-acid-trip, Chrome-ish take on noise dudes playing techno. Their recent Balliceaux gig included stretches of horror-movie-soundtrack synth lines and the metal-on-metal abuse of some sort of Stargate-y copper cymbal sphere. The show will have a proper sound system for sure; the vibe will be good. The whole thing starts on Friday, August 29 at 7 PM. There is a suggested donation of $10-15. For more info, click here.

Then, on September 7, Jason Lescalleet returns to Richmond for another performance of meticulous loops and electronic manipulation. This longtime New England experimental musician (his remix/collage skills were even on the closing track of Bane's 1999 LP It All Comes Down To This, for those who always need some reference to 90s hardcore) plays long, seemingly endless sets of ambient drone and field recordings. The sets also feature moments of harsh noise, and usually incorporate a joke where the maestro subtly (or not so subtly) sinks a pop song or hip hop hook into the layers.

Alongside vintage Walkmans and a laptop, the awesome centerpieces of Lescalleet’s sprawling table of gear are two reel-to-reel tape machines stretched across the table, with what looks like almost twenty feet of recording tape stretched into one loop between the machines. You’ll see Lescalleet expertly stretch and manipulate the tape’s length and speed, and hear it--not always instantly--play into the set’s loops and drones. Sometimes the magnetic tape abuse is like a loose thunderclap. At other times its an abrupt switch to DJ Screw tempo. Lescalleet is seriously into tape loops--his email address is tapeloops@hotmail and his Facebook name is Tape Loops.

Lescalleet even goes so far as to destroy parts of the tape, causing the sounds to deteriorate moreso with each cycle of the reel-to-reel machines. This gives the performance the same taste of unique impermanence that you might also get from a loose Christian Marclay record or a less tragic version of Disintegration Loops by William Basinski. Lescalleet’s last two performances in Richmond were seated shows, definitely not for those who lack patience, given the sprawl and often glacial pace of Lescalleet’s material. A seated audience can definitely meditate in the drifts of low-end drone and masterful layers of looping and heady primitive analog phasing.

Lescalleet will precede his performance with a screening of his film Trophy Tape, a collection of videos for songs from his 2012 album, Songs About Nothing. The film is curated by Lescalleet and includes contributions from a stable of Midwest noise big names like former Wolf Eyes madman Aaron Dilloway, Hair Police’s Robert Beatty, and No Fun Fest star C. Spencer Yeh, along with modern video artists Ellen Frances (NYC) and Heidi Alasuvanto (Finland).

The sole local support for Lescalleet’s acts will be Photoblaster, aka Broadcastatic, the multimedia/noise performance handle for Tommy Birchett, wherein audio and video inputs feedback into another, and walls of harsh tones interact with stacks of televisions and surveillance video monitors. The result is a meeting of no-input noise manipulation/confusion with the high concept cathode ray patterns Nam June Paik’s video installations. This event will start at 7 PM on Sunday, September 7. Suggested donation is $7-15. For more info, click here.

By J. Russell

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