In December The Dome asked us to play as part of their Earsthetics season. By all accounts Ryoji Ikeda’s amazing show was far and away the best thing, but we can put in a good case for coming second…
You can read about our day out on the Dome website.
Minimal impact came onstage bang on 8:15, seated at a tiny coffee table concealing his kit, a massive video of degraded VHS feedback washing in blue/yellow arcs across the giant screen behind him. Starting with a coarse buzz that thickened out into a full spectrum wall of noise before being slowly washed away in stately swathes of phaser and jets of steam as the buzz reasserts itself as a massive insectoid whirr. A low fidelity immersive experience.
Tony Rimbaud’s hand picked quartet, TR Agency, where second on stage for a commercial break. Ron Caines sat on a chair at the front of the stage, nick stalking behind looping collages, breathy sounds, synthy washes and swirling alto, while nick talks about Stuff. And chewing gum (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-24518203). The visuals were from a fantastic set of Black and White slides of broken mannequins. Nick discusses advertising, consumer goods and even recalls when everything around here Was All Fields. Staying pretty solidly away from rhythm it gets pretty spooky at times.
Static Memories’ Gus and Dan set up right at the back clearing as much space as possible for Mirei Yazawa to dance. She took up most of the attention of the players and us, lit from a lamp low at the side of the stage, with a pale blue block of ice slowly melting across the background. The music was typically beyond description: scraped bow across double bass, chimes and delays, Mirei twisting in response and driving changes in what they were playing, its all Very abstract. Dancer and musicians interlocked tightly.
Noteherder & McCloud had Bartosz Dylewski who had booked the projector and built the screen supplying visuals, and Chris Parfitt came roaring out in a storm of soprano notes primary geometries sliding around behind him. It took me a while to get up a similar head of steam, but there was some grinding sequences I enjoyed and a section in the middle with me howling through the bitcrusher while Chris circular blew squealing overtones on the sax that still sounds pretty damn intense.
HLCollins starts his set in a rattling trio with Nicholas Langley and Hassni Malik from The Vitamin b12 sat in line at a metal baker’s tray, scraping metal objects of various sizes about. Its theatre and oddly musical, and very funny. After a quick session with Henry up a set of steps banging a mic’d metal bin Nick and Hassni leave the stage and Henry moves onto a didgeridoo coffee machine that spits water but makes amazing sounds, he then moves onto a turntable and some balloons and effects for a comedy improv session that gets slowly creepier with a slurring hum playing back against clicks and bumps and occasional bird call for an ambient music for hell’s ante-room.