Sunday, November 13, 2011



November 6, 2011
Banned Rehearsal 223 - Banned Rehearsal

Participating were Karen, Aaron, and me in 1990. After about ten minutes of transparent chamber music, we call Anna in San Diego to celebrate the 6th Bannediversary. The rest of the session is 1/2 of a telephone converasation.

I Got Shit - Pearl Jam [from Rearviewmirror]

Check out the slow flange of the cymbal's sound rolling through the pounding rhythm. It is the antithesis of an 80's tight-ass production.

November 7, 2011
Banned Rehearsal 571 - Banned Rehearsal

My index only lists Karen, Anna, Aaron, and me, which would be an unusual grouping, in that Neal is not there. An error is always a possibility. A delicate session, and then raucous. But when raucous, raucous in detail and briefly.

Sounds of the Underbrush 2/28/2005 Track 10 - hosted by Keith Eisenbrey & Mike Marlin

The final mass improv of the evening.

BF Percussion Rough - Keith Eisenbrey

All the percussion tracks collected for eventual use in Blood and Fire Hallelujah mixed together. Seven minutes of kaleidoscopic rhythm wheels.

The Wagon - Ben Harney [from Allen Lowe's Really The Blues]

Allen also includes this cut in his earlier collection That Devilin' Tune, so I'll get to listen to it again soon. Ben's voice, alone, sings a cheerful tale of woe.

The House Carpenter - Clarence Ashley [from Harry Smith's Anthology of American Folk Music]
Milenburg Joys - Kid Rena [from Allen Lowe's That Devilin' Tune]
Trying To Get To You - Elvis Presley [from Sunrise]
Only The Lonely - Roy Orbison [collected from Dave Marsh's The Heart of Rock & Soul]

Until Roy comes in, this could be The Fleetwoods. It must have been something in the air. I guess we could always blame Sputnik.

(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction - The Rolling Stones [collected from Dave Marsh's The Heart of Rock & Soul]
Who'll Stop The Rain - Creedence Clearwater Revival [collected from Dave Marsh's The Heart of Rock & Soul]
Born to Run (single)- Bruce Springsteen [collected from Dave Marsh's The Heart of Rock & Soul]
Bebe Le Strange - Heart [from Heart: Greatest Hits]

November 8, 2011
Trance Butchered Knight 3 - Keith Eisenbrey

A somewhat less than successful mix of percussion (#1) plus Funmaker Sprite (#2). The progressive loss of signal has tipped a tidge past the optimal garbage-y quality of the Sprite tracks alone.

Recitative, Aria, and Burlesque - Sergei Slonimsky - Paul Taub, Roger Nelson, Matthew Kocmieroski - [from Edge - Flute Music from the Periphery of Europe]

I must presume that composers from within the former Soviet block view the various techniques and attitudes of free-world post-war concert music from a perspective that is as difficult for us to comprehend as our view of their attitudes and techniques are to them. And so it is no surprise that to some extent what is picked up as salient from our culture is just what seems to us most superficial to it. Extended instrumental techniques are as easy to hear as new and weird as they are difficult to produce well, and so can give what is otherwise a fairly standard musical endeavor the sheen of open-to-western-ideas-ness, without necessarily engaging in the full decades-long dialogue that led to them in the first place. The performances here are top-notch, but the overall effect is more like a duct-tape skin graft. The glitz of the not-so-unusual-as-all-that-special-effects doesn't shine from within the musical fabric. Instead, it obscures and distracts.

Sonata - Pteris Vasks - Paul Taub - [from Edge - Flute Music from the Periphery of Europe]

This one gets closer. Paul plays magnificently, as always, and the piece doesn't spend much time being music-as-usual - though it doesn't exactly not do that, either. Somehow in the midst of it, the technique of playing the flute while singing, and of playing the flute, and of singing itself, all become part of the activity of inhabiting this piece.

Light Years - Peal Jam [from Rearviewmirror]

The vocal part studiedly narrow both rhythmically and pitchwise. A composer's performance.


November 10, 2011
Solstice Quintet at The Chapel Performance Space, Good Shepherd Center Seattle
Ann Marie Yasinitsky, Keri E. McCarthy, Shannon Scott, Matthew Aubin, Ryan M. Hare

Wooden Miniatures - Gregory Yasinitsky
Three Little Fantasies - Oliver Knussen
Towns of Wood and Wind - Carl Schimmel
Mythos - Ryan Hare
Suite for Wind Quintet - Ruth Crawford Seeger

The wind quintet as an ensemble presents composers with numerous challenges. The instruments don't really balance dynamically all that well, each pairing has unique characteristics of blending-ness and not-blending-ness (which shift with the various pitch ranges), and unless you have five heroes of circular-breathing to work with you must always consider length of breath in every idea and at every moment. None of these are really bad challenges, and they are often met and vanquished to huge success.

This fine Palousian band was brave enough to travel from over the mountains, in November no less, to offer five largely successful assays into the field. I was especially taken by Oliver Knussen's little pieces with their surprising and imaginative textures and phrasings, Ryan Hare's subtle theatricalities, and of course Ruth Crawford Seeger's supremely slippery notions of parallel play. All said and done this was an attractive and well balanced program, and I enjoyed it immensely.

November 12, 2011
Curtains For You, Out On The Streets, and The True Bugs at North City Vintage Honda, Seattle

Neal had informed us that Mike Gervais's "other band", The True Bugs, would be playing in Lake City on Saturday night. Later we were informed that it was at a "used car dealership", and then at a "vintage Honda store" - "more of a party than a show". We had an intersection a vague time (8 or 9), and the instructions that the "entrance is on 140th". We drove by it twice without seeing anything even remotely lively, explored the other side of Lake City Way, and just before giving up and going home Karen happened to spot a van with North City Vintage Honda printed on it. It was parked in front of a dark commercial building. A "For Sale" banner covered its streetward sign. We wound back to the correct side of Lake City Way, parked a block off and, fortunately, spotted some folks heading in the right direction carrying instruments. We followed where they had disappeared into an unlit vacant lot. Hidden around the corner of a building a square canvas awning had been set up, with a fire-barrel in the middle for heat. We found Neal, and said our howdys to those we knew, finding out only then that not only would The True Bugs be playing but also Curtains For You. After an hour or so we wandered inside. Of course it turns out that the Hondas in question aren't cars at all, but motorcycles, with what I presumed to be a repair-shop garage space as the venue. The bands set up toward one end (with the restroom behind them), and we were surrounded by shelves of tools and motorcycle parts.

If I am not mistaken, the connection between all the bands and the venue goes something like this: Jeremiah, who I gather is the the proprietor of the venue, plays guitar in both Out On The Streets and The True Bugs. Mike and Matt Gervais, the respective singer and drummer of The True Bugs, are also the front end of Curtains For You.

CFY plays with an infectious bouncy beat. Their songs and arrangements are accomplished, gleefully professional endeavors. We'll be seeing them again next week - so more later. To my ear, OOTS was a bit under-developed. They play music reminiscent of early U2 with lots of skill and energy, but their sound hasn't gelled. I couldn't help thinking that it would behoove them to think hard about how much like U2 they really want to be. Why be a 300th rate Bono when you've got a shot at being a 1st rate Out On The Streets? I leave open the question of why anyone would want to emulate His Insufferableness in the first place, but to each their own. TTB is a fine specimen of second-generation Seattle Grunge, straight up and hard reckless driving beats. The moshing in the crowd got more reckless than I am comfortable with (being an old guy), but I suppose the young folks were having fun, and I didn't see that anyone got hurt.

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