Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The BSC & Ophibre at The Piano Factory

The BSC at The Piano Factory

Ophibre at The Piano Factory

Last night was my first time at The Piano Factory and for being a gigantic building, that shit is hard to find. Well, finding the room where the show was going down was tough, anyway. Thankfully the security dude at the front office was nice and helpful. Apparently (just for future reference) you have to go around to the back of the building, through the parking lot, down some stairs, through a door propped open with a rock, up some dirty stairs, around the corner and voila! You just found the place where magic happens.

Seriously, The Piano Factory is gonna be the new CBGB's of Boston for experimental music. Take a look at the shit they (they = Ricardo from Semata Productions, who owns/rents the room...or something) got lined up in the next couple of months. I'm not gonna write it all here 'cause it's a lot of stuff, but everything's in the "Shows" section over on the right. Hopefully I'll be able to make it to at least some of those. Like John Wiese. Can't believe he's playing Boston, that's so fucking rad.

But hey ho, onto the show. Last night was awwesoooome. First off, I was like the youngest person there and that was a little weird. There were people there my grandparents age. And that makes those people there the coolest grandparents ever (unless your grandparents are Bjork and Matthew Barney). So I got to talk to Ben (aka Ophibre) before the show. Very cool guy who has good taste in gloves. He went "on stage" and did his thing. It was low end droney stuff that was slightly pulsating, kind of like if an organ had a heartbeat. And then there was this noise on top of it all that sounded like a microphone being dragged through a gravel driveway. Totally awesome. At 20 minutes or so, though, it was a little too short for me. I definitely could've listened to that for another 20 minutes at least. It was one of those things you just want to go on forever.

Then The BSC came on and just blew my mind. Sadly, they were missing two people (Liz Tonne's voice and Mike Bullock's double bass) but being new to the whole BSC thing made it not really matter to me. The first set was really weird because it was a bunch of guys making lots of noise, but it was so quiet. And wonderful. It never once felt chaotic. But oh boy, their second set was nuts, especially compared to the first. They started out full blast, banging and clanking, making a beautiful cacophony. I'm really glad I got to hear both sides of The BSC, it definitely enhanced the experience.

I must say, though, there was a slight downside to seeing them play live. Maybe it was just that I've never heard them before, but it was very difficult for me to absorb the music while watching them play. It was a dark room, with 6 people making all sorts of bizarre sounds with traditional instruments, and I was really focused on figuring out exactly what they were doing. I saw the guitarist doing something with tuning forks, the cellist had weird electronics alongside his cello, and the guys playing the theremin, trumpet, and saxophone were making noises I've never heard come out of those instruments. So yes it was the coolest fucking thing to see live but it also distracted me from the music itself. What this means is that I need to track down some recorded BSC material and throw on the headphones. And when that happens, I will be sure to let you know how amazing it is.

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