Archive for February, 2010

Sightings: “Portraits of the Inspired – Pill Wonder Lights the World”

Saturday, February 27th, 2010

A two-foot blanket of bright white snow is probably one of the best things that can happen to this here Big Apple, especially when it takes us New Yorkers by surprise. Whether we are gainfully employed or freelancing on food stamps, we all get a good excuse to step away from the computer for a minute, frolic in the snow, and relive the wide-eyed rapture of our first remembered “snow day.” (Editors note: If you weren’t here to experience the big whopper that hit the Tri-State this week, listening to Real Estate‘s “Snow Days” will probably do the trick). Something I’ve noticed about Brooklynites in particular is that rather than retreat into their private bunkers during inclement weather, they tend to descend upon the cafés, eager to wile away the entire afternoon gripping aromatic brews and catching up with the folks in the neighborhood. Maybe it’s just the herd instinct kicking in, but I really think that unusual natural phenomena have a way of making us crave real-time interaction with real human beings. Avatars just aren’t enough.
(more…)

Micro-Pixel-Rites Presents: Unofficial SXSW SHOWCASE and BBQ

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

MICRO-PIXEL-RITES’ SXSW PARTY from Elise Oh on Vimeo.

Elise Oh, Georgia Kral, and I had been contemplating throwing a joint SXSW showcase for some time when we stumbled upon this insano musical collab between Annie Lennox and Aretha Franklin over at the Pixelhorse headquarters the other day. Needless to say, we realized that we, too, were capable of making our dreams come true. Visitation Rites, in collaboration with fellow lady-run blogs Pixelhorse and Microphone Memory Emotion, is proud to announce a sunny Austin afternoon of beer, barbecue, and babes — not to mention 10 of our favorite acts in independent music right now. The party will drop on the 18th of March into the same grassy backyard where After the Jump Fest hosted its own unofficial party in 2008 and 2009, and will feature the following friends, in no particular order:
(more…)

Arthur Radio Transmission #6: The Excepter Episode

Thursday, February 25th, 2010


Sunday was a very special day for Arthur Radio. We never thought that co-host Hairy Painter would return to Brooklyn after spending a month building Mardi Gras floats and dancing to “sissy bounce” music in Nola, but he surprised us at the station door — out of breath, suitcase in hand — right when we were about to go on. And we never thought we would be able to cram one sound engineer, one baby, five DJs, half a dozen synthesizers, and all six members of Excepter inside the Newtown Radio studio, but somehow we pulled the whole production off without a hitch. Following the release of their new double album Presidence on Paw Tracks last Tuesday, (“Presidence Day observed”), Excepter graced the Arthur airwaves with a set so on point it caused unnoticed seismic shifts beneath a 24-hour techno-rave in Istanbul. Visitation Rites engaged Jon Fell Ryan in a wobbly Q&A, and Ivy Meadows and Hairy Painter piled on layer upon layer of wax ellipses to set the scene…
(more…)

Reviews: Douglas Mesner, “Good and Bad UFOs” Cassette

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

tumblr_kpo5v0YFZh1qa2m3jo1_400As a child, I had a strong interest in the history and mythology of UFOs and aliens. Despite the many phobias that can afflict a young kid, I was never afraid of ghosts, bogeymen, or monsters — or even the supposedly very real threat of child predators, kidnappers, and serial killers. Instead, I was fascinated and terrified by the prospect of being abducted by aliens and experimented on. Why this terror developed — leading to many sleepless nights and pleadings with my parents to sleep in their room — is not clear to me. Probably a combination of the countless hours I spent watching syndicated episodes of “Unsolved Mysteries” and my youth reading list, which leaned heavily on science fiction. My appetite for material relating to UFOs was as insatiable as it was damaging to my young psyche; and to this day, although I’m a well-adjusted adult, the prospect of alien abduction still stirs deep emotions.
(more…)

EXCEPTER, LIVE ON ARTHUR RADIO SUNDAY FEBRUARY 20

Saturday, February 20th, 2010


John Fell Ryan, aka Excepter’s “JFR”, on the above collection of three ink drawings, displayed last month among other visual sweat meats at Fingered Gallery in Bushwick:

“These are all from the Spring of 1998. I was living alone on the corner of Metropolitan and Driggs in Williamsburg, trying to merge cartooning and abstract design with concepts of American Folk mythology and Jungian sex magick. No real art world aim in mind; these were done for reasons of personal development.”
(more…)

Sightings: Matrix Metals, “Tanning Salon, Part Two” Video

Saturday, February 20th, 2010

MATRIX METALS “TANNING SALON, PART TWO” from OESB // FUTURE SOUND on Vimeo.

Sam Meringue’s Matrix Metals project has been the extra cheese for pizza-sticky blogger fingers everywhere since Not Not Fun dropped it as a tape last spring, and pretty much everybody who writes about it has been singing the same tune: if all the artists in David Keenan’s h-pop pantheon got together and threw a party in a Malibu Hilton Hotel lobby circa 1985, Flamingo Breeze is what that party would sound like — plastic Piña Colada glasses, lopsided Monet posters, hallucinated DJ “take-overs” and all. And I used to agree entirely, until this new video by Luke Wyatt made me realize that the album’s closing track kind of pulls that swirling neon vision right out from under you. “Tanning Salon” is the killer hangover that comes with the dawn: we are still at the Hilton, but the ice sculptures have collapsed into puddles, the guests have all come and gone, and the hallucinated 45-year-old trophy wife who glided through the ballroom like an extra in a David Lynch film is lying inside the sensory deprivation chamber of a tanning booth, alone with her darkest thoughts as her 97-year-old husband takes a dip in the pool. Memories can really be quite horrific, when the last five years of your life get jammed in the VCR. And I’m afraid, Lady in Red, that you only looked real with your make-up on.
(more…)

Sightings: Not Not Fun Publishes “Skull” Book by Jeremy Earl

Friday, February 19th, 2010

jeremy-earl-skull-book

Jeremy Earl is one busy guy. Not only is he the leader of Woods, but he also runs the associated labels Woodsist and Fuck it Tapes. You may have noticed that these labels have an instantly identifiable aesthetic, and that is due in large part to Earl’s artwork, which graces many a cassette and LP release. From the distinctive ink-drawn Woodsist logo to the elaborate collage work on the cover of Robedoor’s Endlessly Blazing, Earl’s artistic output is as identifiable as his lovely falsetto. It is therefore a cause for celebration that his art work is now available in a condensed and portable form — inside his new book Skull, that is, the first non-musical release on Los Angeles’ esteemed Not Not Fun label.
(more…)

VR Vimeo: Moon Duo Bleed Pastel Colors at Synchronicity Space in Los Angeles

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Moon Duo – Live – “Stumbling 22nd Street”, Feb 12, 2010, Synchronicity, Los Angeles, CA from Samantha Cornwell on Vimeo.

Earlier this week, we posted a video that I shot at Synchronicity Space in Los Angeles of Pocahaunted giving a rousing, shamanistic performance. At the same show, I also had the pleasure of seeing — and taping — San Francisco’s Moon Duo.

The pace of festivities that evening was quite long-winded, so the band didn’t even take the stage until 1am. By that time, sadly enough, most of the crowd had dissipated. I took advantage of the situation and set up my camera in a space where I was free from obstructions. I was still on a high from taping Pocahaunted earlier, and was hoping to keep riding on the same buzz. Although I had heard and enjoyed the music of Moon Duo before, I really didn’t know what to expect from a live performance.
(more…)

Arthur Radio Transmission #5: Amor Apocalíptico, with live set by Wish

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010


Collage: In-studio photo by Anna Gonick and artwork by Wish

Last Sunday, Visitation Rites returned to Arthur Radio to celebrate the astronomical conjunction of the Chinese New Year, Valentine’s Day, and President’s day, which just so happened be the release date for Excepter‘s almost eponymous new double L.P. Presidence (preview inside). Rather than make love songs the ordre du jour, we thought we would simply regale you with some tunes that have been pulling our heart strings of late. In the second hour, Zeljko McMullen of the music/visual/art collective Shinkoyo, and founder of Brooklyn’s Paris London West Nile DIY performance space, took us a thousand leagues under the sea of pop musical detritus with his electronic solo project, Wish.
(more…)

After the Post Rock: Mountains, Tape, and Tim Hecker at the Unsound Festival in New York

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

MountainsMountains, Live at Le Poisson Rouge, Unsound Festival, February 10, 2010.

The first major snowstorm of 2010 in New York City occasioned one of the most noteworthy nights of the Unsound Festival. The festival, which originated in Poland and is making its stateside debut this year, is a two-week series of concerts, film screenings, talks, and other special events in Manhattan with a focus on experimental dance and electronic music. Tonight’s concert took place at Le Poisson Rouge, a relatively new downtown venue that seeks to bring classical and experimental music to the beer-swilling masses in a club setting. LPR is relatively small with an impressive sound system suited to avant garde musics, which often hinge on subtle gestures and deep listening for success.
(more…)