SUMMER ROUND UP

SUMMER ROUNDUP

Oh man so summer is almost over.  I know it’s true because I just did my perennial trip to JC Penney in order to reap the benefit of massive mall sales and procure back-to-school clothes without holes in them.  I even picked up some cheap junky jewelry in hopes of perfecting my “real adult” simulacrum.  I’ll keep you posted 😉

Oh yes, summer.  A time when the substitute teaching season ends and I spend a month or two taking trains and sleeping on couches, visiting friends and strangers, wearing the same clothes every day and getting stinky…

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PORTLAND

My first stop was Portland, where I spent time in a lovely trailer off of 82nd street writing my first magazine article and practicing with my new band.  The article is out now in the VICE Anti-Music Issue edited by Sam McPheeters.  It’s called “Keeping It Bleak: Modern Touring in America” and it’s about deathbed noise-tour as artform.  I was lucky enough to get some of my own personal tour heroes Elijah Forrest (Terrors, Cavelife) and Jeff Witscher (Rene Hell, Deep Jew, Impregnable, etc) for quotes and interviews.  I think both of them are amazing artists and I hope that comes across in the piece.  It also includes awesome illustrations by my good friend and former bandmate Tara Tavi.   To top it off, I’m also EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH for the first time in my life!  (Something that somehow never happened when I was a waitress or video store clerk.)

the photo was also taken in the PDX trailer, so CK One!

PS – I kind of like writing.  If you want to hire me to write something, hit me up!  erikam.anderson (AT) gmail (DOT) com

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AWE

The new band is called AWE and I’m REALLY excited about it.  The name came to me in a dream ok so I can’t fuck with it.  It’s my initials turned all inside out.  The line-up is basically the same people that played with me when I opened the Throbbing Gristle show last April.  It’s my bestest NoDak friend Aaron Davis (ACRE) on bass and my lil sis Nicole on drums and vocal harmonies.  Yes, that is correct, I’m forming a sister band.  Is there anything cuter?  They were just down for a couple weeks tracking some stuff at Studio 1510, so now I’ve got to buckle down and mix it.  The AWE record is tentatively titled Past-Life Martyred Saints and will include some older stuff I recorded but never released like “Marked” and “Butterfly Knife”, but also brand new stuff.  It’s going to be coming out early next spring in Europe on the truly rad Souterrain Transmissions label.  At this point I don’t have a plan for the US.  What’s up with the US these days?  Anyone want to weigh in?

summer, PDX

So anyway, here are the bones of a new song called “Nirvana Demo Rare”.  Recorded in that Portland trailer on a borrowed 4track, with help from cats.  The final version will prolly have drums and bass, but here is the skeleton.

NIRVANA DEMO RARE

Mona, who helped

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MIDWEST

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Next stop was my hometown of Sioux Falls, SD.  Not a single picture from that time except one of me taking a body shot of tequila out of a former high school classmate’s cleavage.  Nope!  Not posting it!

From there it was a little cabin on a lake outside of Minneapolis (which happens to be one of the best cities in the US fer sure).  No internet, and I stayed up til dawn 3 nights in a row fishing.  And drinking miller lite.  Jesus christ that was the best.  All catch and release, mostly little panfish and trout and of course the hideous bullhead.  For those who don’t know these are quite awful creatures with a blubbery flesh body and horrible stinging whiskers.  They are basically fucking cthulhu, total lovecraft fish, but also kind of a common meme/punchline in the midwest.  They are like the devil whammies on press your luck.

bullhead

Cthulhu

See?  Don’t they look like fucking baby Cthulhus?  Which brings me to one of my favorite memes :  BABIES DRESSED LIKE CTHULHU!

aw, aint he cute?

Don’t worry, I’m not super-maternal yet, despite all the time I spent in the Midwest.  I can’t even take care of a dog 😦

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BALTIMORE

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From there I got a real cheap ticket to NYC, and from there ran down to Baltimore for what was apparently the last ever Whartscape. It was really really lots of fun.  So much so that I didn’t take a single picture!  Saw lots of friends and the whole time was so hot and sweaty it was like a constant sauna.  Also spent some time debating about which is more intimidating, West Oakland or West Baltimore.  I had always felt really unsure and on my toes when I had visited Baltimore in the past, but friends that come visit us in West O feel the same way.  I’m still kind of tripped out by Baltimore, with its blue flashing police cameras in the streets and hovering black helicopters that actually yell at people.  Even the bar down the street from Peter’s they have to buzz you in and take down your driver’s license number in case you stab somebody.  But in West Oakland we don’t even have a bar, so that’s that.  We decided that both were intense in different ways.  In Baltimore I noticed that ppl you pass on the street won’t really look at you, (which seems kind of Southern in a way) but in Oakland you basically have to make eye contact and greet everyone you come across or else it’s sketchy.  The last time I didn’t I had a group of boys holler at me “What’s up?  You bad-ass bitch!  You exotic-ass bitch!”  Which I think was kind of a compliment but so funny that this blonde-haired blue-eyed cornfed girl would be so exotic out here in Oakland.  Funny, but true.

me and lil sis pose for a West O xmas card

As always, a big highlight was visiting Tarantula Hill and seeing whatever progress on the house that’s been made since the last time through town.  A sauna!  A rooftop garden!  A lightbox synthesizer from 1960!  And to top it all off, Carly even gave me some of my favorite homemade lipgloss made out of beeswax from HER OWN BEES that she keeps herself in beehives on the roof.  What a woman!


NYC

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From there it was back to NYC for just a few days.  Apparently everyone lives in Greenpoint now so that’s where I spent almost all my time.  My friend Will was having an art party/real-time photo collage, where he hired a model off of Craigslist and invited friends to come over, bring an object, and stage a still-life involving all objects and the model.  The actual scene of the shoot was kept very secret, behind a big white sheet so that people couldn’t peek at what one another was doing.  We got there late so we just sat around drinking wine in the gallery with the other participants who were waiting for their turn to set up their shot.  We also invented a new meme I really liked that boiled down to “I’d rather listen to Henry Rollins doing spoken word on a TOOL album than listen to Fugazi!!!”  Here are some pics.

By Will Rahilly

Will Rahilly and Dan

From there we split: me, Leif and Mario.  3 Midwesterners in the big city.  And for some funny reason we ended up doing pretty much exactly as we would have done if we had been back in the dusty rural Heartland instead of buzzing Brooklyn: first we did karaoke, then we got Miller Lite and went back to Zeljko’s apartment where we drank, listened to Danzig, talked metal and stayed up until dawn.
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Here is an awesome video of Mario playing guitar with a prototype of Leif’s new pedal.  This is especially great because Mario is actually an accomplished composer with a release on Tzadik and performances of his work taking place all over the world.  He recently told a former professor that he was in a new metal band and his professor said, “Mario, grow up!”  But this here proves why he’s got all the cred:
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Yes Leif’s pedal is still in prototype right now but it’s going to be fucking crazy.  Midi-sync stereo programmable tremolo patterns with tap tempo, feedback function and the ability to import settings into your ProTools sessions.  WHA???  Basically a game-changer.
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Here is a scrappy little video I took of him playing around with it plugged into a Big Muff and a volume pedal.  Poor lil baby can’t even really play guitar 😉  (although he’s real handy with a viola) BUT LISTEN TO HOW FUCKING SWEET IT SOUNDS when he’s just basically holding it!  Fuck.
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Check back for more updates on this, the first run should be available soon…
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MIDWEST PART II

And from there it was home again home again jiggedy-jig.  Back to the cabin on the lake where I was supposed to be working on more music but instead spent most of my time fishing and watching TV (which is really a wild time for me, since I haven’t had TV in about 10 years).  The best (besides having no internet) was being able to go fishing with my grandparents.  I love them and feel so lucky to have all 4 of them still around to tell me stories about the “olden days”, as I call them.  This grandpa grew up around the Minnesota Iron Range 60 miles from the Canadian border and has the best accent I have ever heard and supreme comic timing.  He wears wooden clogs and goes out to the barn every morning to feed the kittens.  Apparently though he used to be a real hooligan, as he just told me a story of one Halloween where he and some friends tipped over an old lady in an outhouse with the DOOR FACING DOWN!  Grandpa!!!_
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Grandpa hammin' it up! must run in the family 😉

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OAKLAND

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Ok I guess this is the real home again home again.  EASTNILE has some crazy shit coming up.  First of all is the online launch of SHINKOYO, which is a digital media label spanning New York, Baltimore and the West Coast.  Besides releasing physical formats, the label will  also be trafficking in digital 7″s, video art and even experimental opera and performance.  I’ve been dreaming of putting the Some Dark Holler stuff into digital LP format and this looks like the place to do it…
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Also exciting is the first ever festival we are throwing in conjunction with the traditionally more improv-based 1510.  We’re calling it the ONE festival, for OAKLAND NEW AND EXPERIMENTAL, and it will be 4 days of music, video and performance from so many amazing acts.  I helped curate this one and the lineup is definitely one of the most diverse and unique I have seen in a long time.  Elizabeth Orr, Fred Frith, Warner Jepson, Holly Herndon, James Fei, Secretarial Pool, Greg Zifcak and more.  I feel like these are going to be shows that really draw from the different scenes of experimental performance that are going on across the Bay Area, from the old guard of Improv to new Theatre and video works.  We’re also going to take advantage of having Warner Jepson’s old Buchla synth here that was rescued from the SF Tape Music Center by having a different vintage analog synth set every night.  Worth the price of admission alone!  Hope to see you there  ❤ ❤ ❤
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AND ONE LAST THING:  This Friday we are throwing a show for Brooklyn’s beloved LIGHT ASYLUM.  FER REALS, COME SEE THIS NOW BEFORE THIS BAND IS OUT OF YOUR PRICE RANGE.
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5 Responses to SUMMER ROUND UP

  1. Robert Freeman Wexler says:

    ” At this point I don’t have a plan for the US. What’s up with the US these days? Anyone want to weigh in?”

    My newest novel is out in England and France (in French), and I have an agent in Italy looking for a publisher there. But the U.S.? Nothing.

    • little miss nowhere says:

      right? it’s just hard to figure out. i could prolly figure out some options but it’s just hard to know what to do these days and i don’t think i’m alone in that.

      • Robert Freeman Wexler says:

        And I forgot to say, looking forward to the new release! Wherever it’s coming out, at least it’s coming out.

  2. Matt says:

    I think this blog post might interest you. It’s by Marissa Paternoster, the guitarist for Screaming Females, and it’s about things going horribly wrong on tour. They’re not a noise act or particularly experimental/whatever, but the seemingly endless problems they had reminded me quite a bit of “Keeping it Bleak,” so I thought I’d share it with you. It’s quite the story.
    http://screamingfemales.blogspot.com/2010/06/if-you-wanted-to-know-why-rest-of-tour.html

    • little miss nowhere says:

      oh man, yeah pretty bleak! van troubles seem to be an especially common form of band hell. i’ve boughten a van that stopped working right after i got it, rented from avis, driven a totally stuffed compact SUV and taken public transport but borrowed different equipment every night. renting was probably the most comfortable, although i do love taking the train.

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