A Pre-Spring Solstice Weekend With Psychic TV Saturday March 12 (7 pm) through Sunday March 13 (5 pm) at Trans-Pecos: $20/ night, $35 both days, Saturday after-party entry $10 after midnight, Sunday after-party entry $10 after 10 pm
Genesis P-Orridge has had a busy, well, life– but lately the founder of Psychic TV and Throbbing Gristle has threatened to surpass even h/er own level of hyper-productivity. Just 24 hours after opening h/er new interactive art exhibition, Try to Altar Everything, at the Rubin Museum on Friday, the artist is asking that people bring objects of significance to contribute to the “shamanic space” (stemming from ideas about the universe s/he soaked up during several visits to Nepal over the years). P-Orridge will post up at Trans-Pecos for a two-day vernal equinox party. Sure, it’s about a week ahead of schedule but it’s undeniably spring-like right now, and who wouldn’t want an extended celebration in their lives right now, anyway? Actually, the two-day marathon was originally scheduled for January, and was cancelled when Jonas hit and ruined literally everything. Ah, sweet revenge on winter.
While you still have a staggering amount of Manhattan performance festival shows going on this week, don’t be afraid to take a break from sifting through show schedules in order to check out some of these other options.
January is theatre-fest time: there’s the always exciting COIL fest, Under the Radar at the Public Theater, and the opera-centric summit Prototype. But Theresa Buchheister– a founding member of Title:Point, the DIY production company that runs Vital Joint at the Silent Barn– thought it was the perfect opportunity to introduce her own operation into the mix, The Exponential Festival, as a counterpoint to the usual.
The first email I received about the new video for The Adventures of the Silver Spaceman (TAOTSS) from frontman Zachary James Ellis said something about a “yurt” with no cell service. When I caught up with Ellis via phone, he told me he was on a retreat, writing songs in Paonia, in western Colorado. With the Rockefeller tree about to be lit, tourist crowds reaching saturation levels, the L train acting like a jilted lover, and a drizzle erasing what few hours of daylight exist at this longitude, we could all be a little jealous.
Negative Approach, Night Birds, Child Bite, Outskirts Sunday, Nov. 29th, 8 pm at The Acheron: $15
Years back, I was day drinking at an unassuming deep-fryer dive in Detroit. A surly looking guy with a grease-stained apron and hangover slouch from hell emerged out of a kitchen. My friend seated at the bar next to me guffawed and nudged me discreetly. “Look, it’s John Brannon.” And so it was. The hardcore legend could have been beer-sweating over my tater tots for all I know– and deep down, I sort of hope that was the case.
If you’re an experimental music fan, or even just someone who likes to dabble in the unexpected once in a while, this weekend show is an absolute must-see. With its stellar lineup of (mostly) female-fronted noise projects, you’ll have the #blessed opportunity to experience performances by some true vets of avant-garde sounds. Originally from Detroit, Pod Blotz (aka Suzy Poling, who works as a visual artist too) has landed in much-sunnier LA, but that doesn’t mean her music has lightened up in the least. With Pod Blotz, Poling continues her devotion to dark electronics and carrying out tripped-out visual stunts at live performances (the latter looks something like this).
This week, as I’m sure you’ll be surprised to hear, there are plenty of shows worth blowing your ears out for. Our picks include a brand new project from a longtime blues punk devotee, The Dark Prince of Garage, and sugar-sweet disco that’s not afraid to hit sour notes. All that and more below this here line.
Stephanie Griffin, collective member and spokesperson for the Silent Barn (Photo: Nicole Disser)
The Silent Barn wasn’t about to wait for CMJ to do its thing before reopening. On October 14, while the music exec’s wet dream (and everyone else’s headache-inducing cluster fuck) raged on, the DIY venue welcomed show-comers back into its space, closed since a fire ripped through one of the upstairs residencies, and left behind an expensive mess a large chunk of the building. It had been less than three weeks since the fire, and after a slew of benefit shows, volunteer efforts, small gestures of support, and around $25,000 in donations, the show-space reconstruction efforts were complete.
Still, the reopening was “bittersweet,” according to Stephanie Griffin, Silent Barn’s spokesperson. “It’s kind of hard to get people to understand that even though we’re open downstairs, everything upstairs is still a mess. It isn’t a public space, so people don’t really see it and don’t really understand the extent of our need to keep fundraising.”
The Silent Barn in Bushwick after a fire destroyed an apartment upstairs (Photo: Nicole Disser)
Last Friday was a typical one at the Silent Barn— Bushwick’s beloved multi-faceted DIY music venue, art gallery, studio space, and artist residency is teeming with activity almost every day and night of the week– Freak Out Fest raged downstairs while a band practiced upstairs. And one resident was in their room when a fire broke out, one that the artist collective believes was caused by an “electrical malfunction.” Thankfully, spokesperson and longtime Silent Barn member Stephanie Griffin told us that no one was hurt. Of the 60 or so people at the show, “everyone got out within two minutes,” she said. But the damage is significant and threatens to upend Silent Barn’s delicate financial situation.
One listen to Ttotals and you’ll realize you can leave your weed at home for this one, these guys are a 100-percent natural fatty blunt for your ears. Remember kids, music is a natural high. White Kyle will bring things back to ’60s THC levels (i.e. not going to put you in a freaking coma). He’s a straightforward Austin-garage baby, born of a long embedded but still respectable scene. The hometown kids include ‘lectronix lovers MPHOand the psych-heavy drone dogs (bird dogs, technically) of Heavy Birds.
Leather Daddy is raucous screech punk that’s sure to get you jostled at the very least, but chances are you’ll score at least a few interesting bruises you’ll have to explain to your boss as due to “falling over at the dog park” or “dropping a stack of bibles” on your leg. Their pals Exit Order are equally as energetic, though falling off the pure-punk wagon a little bit with what are nearly Slayer-influenced guitar riffs. If we were lesser beings, we might be tempted to call this sort of metal-like, but we know better than that. Extra points for their breakneck pace that makes any metal head look like a 3,000-pound sloth.
Gigawatts Fest is happening this weekend, which is great and all — I need my pop fix as much as the next guy. But sometimes I want to be surrounded by sounds that whinge, “I’mmmmmmm differentttttt.” If that’s you, too, get thee to these smaller shows where you’ll find acts that don’t exactly qualify as festival material, if you catch my drift.