Green Door Store
Noteherder & McCloud
So our last show at The Green Door Store started with Noteherder & McCloud grey suited as usual, but sadly lacking the drummer we were expecting due to ill health, but still it was a pretty good set (even if I do say so myself). Starting with a monster slow bass pulse soon this was joined by a circling, swirling reverb-y soprano sax. After a while of this the bass switches over to a mid-tempo arpeggio, and the sax takes flight over some aeroplane hums. The bass stops leaving the plane drone hovering, the sax becomes plaintive. Everything drops away leaving Chris circular breathing a lengthy note. A squelching digital mains pulsing starts, Chris shouts into the sax, feedback loops build up in the FX chain and things become hard to source while I laugh. Things get denser and more unfocussed The sax gets pretty serious, weird bass runs happen and nothing is under control. This reaches some sort of crescendo then some lengthy looping 2 note bass line swerves in, derailing everything, the sax gets distant and beautiful, electronics shimmer and decay around us. The high point of the set. After that we get some bass-y noise, some fast arpeggiating and Chris lets rip again.
Next up were Buckner Building; a table of things that sound, a backing accordion drone and rhythm device, violin and a fuck off huge recorder and a teeny tiny recorder all make a contribution during their set. They open with fiddle drone and plain voice with occasional thickened flourishes of violin and odd rattles and sniffs before we get a scary layering up of voices and whistled nightmares and a sudden switch into medieval dance tunage to confuse us before returning to the stark open folk of the beginning for the end. That pretty much set the tone for their set. Five songs of misdirection, tunefulness and decay, rattling drum machines and drones. The second song has a John Barry-esque section underpinning a song about two Herons in the evening. The third a grinding hurdy gurdy drone and recorder that gives way to an antipodean flute and drum track. The fourth a light fluttering that drops into Tuxedomoon cabaret, the final song opens with a gloriously spooky xylophone part over some unravelling drones supplanted by a heartbeat bodhran that in turn gives way to a 4/4 whistling jig before again circling back to the dark opening drones.
So Or, is Resonant Blue with a percussionist, they’re sat behind a bench stuffed with electronics at one end and rattle an bangy things at the other (and on the floor and other tables next to them). At this point it’s best to say that there is no guitar (in spite of my references to one later on). They push a succession of singing bowl chimes, shakers, bells and some tuned percussion into a looping laptop over a simple bass drum and slow feedback wobble. The layered looping works well with this kind of rhythmic dance music derived groove. Some are on extra long loops that take a while to come back. A fat bass peeks out, and the rhythm parts shuffle round for a while. The whine and a thick mid range rumble wash everything away and some machinery cycles in, we get some matchingly harder percussion and more insistent melodic loops are set off by an axle grinder. It all get s a bit intense. The percussionist yelps. It sounds like someone is e-bowing a guitar in a wind tunnel. At this point some massive south American bassline walks into a bar with an electric whip drum to accompany him. The percussionist works around this for a while, we get some layered up chittering voices that twist into a backward conversational loop that set us up u for the ridiculously heavy bass that takes us lumbering into the next section. The percussionist digs out a megaphone and lets rip and a second fuzzy bass starts fizzing around the first. The Djembe works around the basses taking us into some pretty definite On-U-Sound space. Cascading echoed shells herald the final part, the bassline faster but no less heavy; some backward guitarral squeal melody; rhythm parts more syncopated playing off each other – the percussionist gets to work on the rim of the singing bowl, really working away on that thing. You can see it leaping in his hand. He’s right there with it. The rest is taking care of itself the percussion parts still whirring round, he is right there with that bowl until everything else is stripped away and you can feel that one zone, that tone has completely filled his mind.