Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Kevin Blechdom (USA) feat. Barnwave + Greg Malcolm & Jenny Ward

kevin blechdom WEB.jpg

Kevin Blechdom (USA) feat. Barnwave

+ Greg Malcolm & Jenny Ward

Wunderbar, Lyttelton

Thursday January 7


Kevin Blechdom is a musician from Tallahassee, Florida, whose solo and collaborative work – as a member of Blectum from Blechdom and Adult Rodeo and as a duo with Eugene Chadbourne – has appeared on labels such as Kid606’s Tigerbeat6 (DJ /rupture, Indian Jewelry, Quintron and Miss Pussycat), Kit Clayton’s Orthlorng Musork (AGF, Akira Rabelais, Ekkehard Ehlers), Sonig (Jason Forrest, Mouse On Mars), Shimmy Disc (Daniel Johnston, Ruins, Shockabilly), Les Disques Victo (Anthony Braxton, Kid Koala, Hijokaidan, Wolf Eyes, Cecil Taylor) and Chicks On Speed Records (Le Tigre, DAT Politics).

Blectum from Blechdom’s first LP won second prize for Digital Music at Ars Electronica in 2001), while the Wire magazine described the duo’s telepathic synergy as a ‘riotous departure from what they regarded as the tight, minimal and earnest tendencies of male-dominated electronica’, approximating the ‘most vivid and literal musical definition yet of the word ‘haywire’”. The 2005 solo album, Eat My Heart Out consisted of a topless Blechdom, clutching the drippy esophagus, heart and lungs of a goat, while the music within was seen as an enactment of this literal evisceration, a confessionalism that has continued to inform her recordings and live performances since. Widely regarded as a retreat from the musical derangements of her practice heretofore, 2009’s Gentlemania is just as harrowingly candid and more unsettling for its ostensible compositional simplicity. A bricolage of Broadway psych, show tune and hillbilly delirium and euphoric faux pas, the album was recorded with Warp label’s Jamie Lidell and stands out as a next-level treatise on interpersonal and inter-species phenomena. Blechdom is currently touring alongside Christopher Fleeger as the duo, BARNWAVE.






Greg Malcolm’s otherworldly abduction of the guitar and re-sounding of its grey acoustic matter has been witnessed across imprints like Kning Disk (James Blackshaw, Machinefabriek), (K-RAA-K)³ (Ignatz, Silvester Anfang, Es, Pan American), Table of the Elements (Thurston Moore, Tony Conrad, Captain Beefhart, John Cale, John Fahey), Interregnum (Robedoor) and Campbell Kneale’s Celebrate Psi Phenomenon. Malcolm co-axes his surgically changed instrument into abstract drifts and moiré-like projections, its implanted contact microphones and sympathetic strings embellishing the subtle dexterity and gleaming nature of his idiosyncratic playing. Malcolm’s duo with Jenny Ward is a radically wronged mutation of decadent alt-country and marginal cabaret, equally as virtuosic but extra-demented and as duplicitously innocent-disturbed as Kevin Blechdom’s recent work. Ward equips Malcolm’s pulp ostinato and cringing jackknife Trippelgitaristen reek-outs with a mélange of walkie-talkie soprano, prurient gargles and puppet-like double-entendre ululations, recalling the halcyon of their earlier days as the touring kid show outfit, Such n Such, albeit weathered by the onset of cynicism, genius and transcendental New Sincerity.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Friday, December 4, 2009

My New Job

Is not being Catherine Wagner. It's review Editor (with Jared Schickling) for Tarpaulin Sky. As such most of my reviewing will be posted here now, but there'll be links from here (the here without a link, so as to say this blog).
First off the bat will be Laura Sims' Stranger (New from Fence) and a selection from Dusie kollektiv, and I'm expecting more from Fence to write on (Lake Antiquity by Brandon Downing and The Black Automaton by Douglas Kearney) and a selection of new titles from Omnidawn Publishing (possibly the most Beautiful name for a publisher ever), including Myung Mi Kim's latest, Penury.

Farrah Field (and me) on Claire Hero

Farrah Field (and me) on Claire Hero here.

I think that, when Farrah says "She's attune to animal-ness, the meat of it all, the violence of being so bodily body--the sexuality therein, caregiving, killing, the fluids of all that", there is an Artaudian cruelty at work - similar to what Jared White says in the comment stream over there about the Fantastic Mister Fox:
"the way the claymation animals would be so polite and articulate and humanist until a plate of food was put in front of them, at which point they would suddenly tear it to shreds in an orgy of messy teeth and ferocious claws and unchewed swallowing."
This says more (through the anthropomorphism, which, as a porous semantic membrane, allows travel both ways) about the human than the animal - as does Dahl's book, in which the dichotomy of Human/Animal (and all the implications: Good/Evil, Civilised/Barbaric, etc) are turned on their heads - though Hero's work is more subtle than this, exploding the possibility of the binary, as everything infects everything else, and Crackbone, the carnivorous Hunter, is an animalistic force of nature, rather than a site of agency and conciousness.