This is a general admission, standing event. Happy hour from 7-8pm including $3 beer and $5 well drink.s
OOIOO has always created a musical language all its own. Under the leadership of Yoshimi P-We, also a founding member of Boredoms, the group has recorded six albums that have subverted expectations and warped perceptions of what constitutes pop and experimental music. Four years of work went into to making GAMEL, their bold new album inspired by the Javanese style of gamelan and the first new music from Yoshimi in over five years. Gamelan is an ancient form that has inspired a great many composers and musicians over the past century, from Erik Satie and Claude Debussy to Mouse on Mars and Sun City Girls. The introduction of this traditional form transformed the group into a super tribe, side-stepping the road between the past and the future. Their focus is not to replicate these ancient styles, but to incorporate them into their consistently inventive, constantly shifting musical frameworks. They take their love of indigenous music into an entirely new dimension by freely weaving organic and electric tones into a vivid tapestry, employing their keen sense of color and texture.
While previous OOIOO albums have been largely studio creations, Gamel is the most accurate portrayal of the band’s overwhelming, forceful live presence they have released yet. Yoshimi leads her minimalistic rhythm ensemble by making quick, impulsive shifts in tone and attack, the group acting as one mind under her expert instruction. While the gamelan elements will be brand new to many listeners, the band offsets the bizarre with familiar, at times even nostalgic and childlike, melodies. Gamel is euphoric, bursting at the seams with an exhilarating frenzy that is universal yet uniquely their own. OOIOO’s music is reflected in the ear of the beholder, with each listener taking away something different.
Yoshimi began her music career in 1986 playing drums in UFO or Die with vocalist Eye, and later joined him in the revolutionary noise-pop group Boredoms. Her explosive drum performances captivated audiences and even inspired Wayne Coyne to name a now-famous Flaming Lips album in her honor. While the band’s tours of the United States are infrequent, they are as the New York Times has stated, transcendent.
John Colpitts (aka Kid Millions) is a Brooklyn-based multi-instrumentalist, composer and writer who is perhaps best known as the drummer for Oneida. Man Forever, his vehicle for exploring the outer limits of drum performance, was created to overwhelm, to investigate the nuances that bloom in the midst of repetitive music, and to act as a pure sound experience.
Originally based on the idea of creating a sort of punk-infused Metal Machine Music for drums, Man Forever has evolved from a five or six full drum set ensemble to something a lot more stripped down. Based on two drummers playing single stroke rolls on a single drum and the patterns that emerge from that, Pansophical Cataract is propulsive
without a pulse. Patterns evolve and burst through the static surface of the material, much of which was produced by electric instruments, though “Ur Eternity” remains mostly drums with only a few bass tracks making an appearance. The sounds created by these instruments were based on the drones that Colpitts hears when he is practicing (the not fully conscious singing or humming that arises when one practices alone), and then augmented and enhanced by the other musicians on the record. The repetitive rolls create a phasing effect, a music in and of itself, and the dynamic shifts that occur when the other instruments enter become not mere notes, but grand events.
In the live environment, these shifts and phasing effects, are amplified through sheer volume and duration. “Surface Patterns” and “Ur Eternity” are 30 and 40 minutes respectively (though have been shortened to around 18 minutes per side on record), creating an even more dramatic effect. Past performances have included Brian Chase (Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs), James McNew (Yo La Tengo), Chris Baio (Vampire Weekend), Richard Hoffman (Sightings), Shahin Motia (Oneida, Ex Models), Sarah Richardson (Creeping Nobodies), Ryan Sawyer (Stars Like Fleas), Greg Fox (Liturgy, Guardian Alien), Christopher Weingarten (Parts and Labor), and many others.
Pansophical Cataract can be likened to watching Niagara Falls. You can’t expect to see every drop of water that crests over the ridge, but you are overwhelmed with the shear scale of the thing, and therein lies the aspiration for this record. Dive right in.