Choose Your Own Adventure

Thursday, September 2

Reserve Tickets for Harmone Korine's Trash Humpers Screening at Squeaky Wheel

Two Screenings: Sat. & Sun 9/4 & 9/5, 9:00pm, Squeaky Wheel (712 Main Street). Seating is limited, tickets are silk-screened editions of sixty for each night (Sept. 4 & 5, 9pm show time). $8 members, $10 non-members. Tickets may be purchased & picked up in-person during open hours, or over the phone (716-884-7172) or via email -

Squeaky Wheel presents: TRASH HUMPERS, a new film by Harmony Korine.

“Leaves the residue of an authentic nightmare. You’ll want to shower afterward.” – David Ansen, Newsweek

‘TRASH HUMPERS is the cinematic equivalent of listening to black metal.’ Guardian

When Harmony Korine (KIDS, GUMMO, JULIEN DONKEY-BOY and MISTER LONELY) was asked about the violent characters in the film, he said, "It's kind of like an ode to vandalism. There can be a creative beauty in their mayhem and destruction. You could say these characters are poets or mystics of mayhem and murder, bubbling up to the surface. They do horrible things, but I never viewed them as sad characters. They're comedic, with a vaudevillian horror element to what they do. They dance as they smash things and set them on fire. They're having a great time."

Married with a kid, and now residing in his native Nashville, cinematic provocateur Harmony Korine shows no signs of settling down. Hailed as “the future of American cinema” by Werner Herzog, writer/ director Korine has blazed a trail with his consistently idiosyncratic output. TRASH HUMPERS sees him return to the big screen with an excoriating attack on the American Dream. A lo-fi production of white-heat intensity, Korine calls it, “a new type of horror; palpable and raw.”

TRASH HUMPERS follows a small gang of sinister ‘elderly’ peeping toms through the shadows of a nightmarishly familiar suburban landscape. Their shocking and sociopathic behavior makes for unbearably compelling viewing that scorches itself onto the mind’s eye.


Wednesday, September 1

Catch Tortoise Thursday at Soundlab

Thursday, September 2, 9pm--TORTOISE, FOUREM.

By Cory Perla for Artvoice:
Not many bands can say they invented their own genre. Tortoise can. Post-rock didn’t exist before 1994, the year that Tortoise released their first, self titled album. What they’ve created since then are songs, using traditional rock instruments, that transcend rock music. Their guitar strings expel textures and atmospheres rather than hooks and riffs. Their percussion acts as an anchor, but it’s usually impossible to tell just how many hands are actually crashing on each noise-producing drum head as all of the members are multi-instrumentalists. When they perform live there are two dueling drum kits set up facing each other, as percussionist John McEntire (also of the band the Sea and Cake) sits adjacent to musicians John Herndon and Dan Bitney, while they intermittently switch between guitar and drums. Between their massive ambient dream-scape tracks and their driving, jazz based epics the band has a catalog of music as emotionally variant as any classical music composer of the last century and are just as influential. Their latest album, Beacons of Ancestorship is a bit more worldly sounding than their previous five albums, but it still moves at an unrelenting pace. Last time Tortoise came to town they played the Tralf, (and the performance was recorded in it’s entirety for Artvoice TV) but this time it will be a much more personal experience when the band takes the stage of Soundlab next Thursday (Sept 2), with local support from Fourem.
Tortoise's John McEntire visited Soundlab as part of the Red Krayola on 08/06/06. Also on the bill was The Vores and DJ Dave G.

Tuesday, August 31

See The Art Department & Black Umbrella Tonight at Soundlab

Tonight, August 31, 10pm, $5--THE ART DEPARTMENT, BLACK UMBRELLA.
Tuesday August 31st marks a return to chiming guitars and pop melodies at Soundlab with THE ART DEPARTMENT (Baltimore) and BLACK UMBRELLA (Buffalo/LA). May the seed of these sounds be fruitful in the belly of the night!

THE ART DEPARTMENT: "When Ernest Hemingway wrote his famous six-word micro-fiction—“For Sale: Baby shoes, never worn.”—it’s likely he didn’t anticipate that his bar-bet brevity would transfer so perfectly to music. The Art Department, a three-man band from Baltimore, is the postcard literature of house-party punk. Each song is insistently short with a clear message: It’s not necessary to blather on to tell a good story. The group’s high-speed fingerpicking and polyrhythmic drumbeats establish a steady momentum, while the almost-harmonized vocals of drummer Mike Meno and guitarist Jon Ehrens float above the smoke-long songs. Dusted with tambourine and condensed, flash-fiction nerditry, The Art Department’s sets kick into gear suddenly and end just as fast. The boys grab your attention with the first note, slide you into the chorus, and, before you realize it’s happening, drop you off at the music’s inevitable, eccentric conclusion." -Emily Wagner (DC CityPaper)

BLACK UMBRELLA: "If you like psychedelic pop like early Pink Floyd with Syd Barrett at the helm or the latest from Of Montreal, or glam rock a la David Bowie and Jobriath, or synthpop akin to The Cure at their sunniest, or a hybrid of C86 bands and early American alternative college rock, or a mixture of all of these, then you’ll love Black Umbrella. James’s vocals remind me of a cross between Billy Corgan and Kevin Barnes with a melancholy pout and flourishes of glam panache. The lyrics are a wonderful blend of deep sadness and fanciful imagery.."

Listen to Fourtet Remix Eluvium

By Tom Breihan for Pitchfork:
Earlier this year, ambient lifer Eluvium released his latest album Similes. On September 14, he'll follow it up with a new limited-edition CDEP, Leaves Eclipse the Light, out on Temporary Residence. In addition to the title track, it features the nearly eight-minute Four Tet remix of the Similes track "The Motion Makes Me Last" and new song "A Life in Tides Less Current". You can stream that Four Tet remix here.

The CD also features a video for "The Motion Makes Me Last" from director Matt McCormick. It's limited to 2000 copies, and it comes in a custom die-cut cover.
Eluvium visited Soundlab on 04/02/05 with Mono and Sleeping Kings of Iona opening.

Monday, August 30

Catch Jason Ajemian and Steve Baczkowski solo sets tonight at Big Orbit Gallery

8pm, Big Orbit Gallery, 30D Essex St. $5 suggested donation or PWYC--"Jason Ajemian snuck in a solo bass set. His brief performance felt like a prayer, meekness turning to fervor, hitting the strings with a mallet and bowing with levity. He framed the three-song set around a country song, about the rain, that his uncle wrote. In Ajemian's hands, it sounded like a beautiful tune from Arthur Russell's World of Echo."--Lars Gotrich,

"With only a double bass and no amplification to speak of, Jason coaxed the audience to the floor below the stage, politely asked for their attention, and then received it in full. While his request was polite, his music demanded it. For an instrument that is normally relegated to providing accompaniment for a melody, he made the beast sing, eliciting sounds far outside its usual range. The result was something between beat poetry and the Velvet Underground's 'The Black Angel's Death Song' had it been composed with bass instead of violin. In other words, intoxicating, impressive and innovative."--by Jack Diablo, EU Jacksonville

Multi-instrumentalist Steve Baczkowski is a Buffalo stand-out in the local “free improv” scene. He’s also very brave; at age 12 he decided to tackle the unwieldy and difficult baritone saxophone as his signature instrument and, by all outward appearances at his raucous and startlingly physical performances, he is well on his way to breaking the wild beast. Baczkowski has produced over 100 jazz/improvisational concerts in countless band lineups and has performed at fringe festivals, CBGB’s, in classrooms and international residencies. For him, rehearsed scores are secondary to that moment of “now” that free improv affords in live performance. His understanding of the lineage of experimental sax players, including such innovators as Peter Brötzmann and Odeon Pope, has helped him “engage the moment, where it sparks. It’s the real deal.”--Lauren N. Maynard, Artvoice

Sample Fennesz/ Daniell/ Buck - Knoxville




By MC for Other Music:
At this point, Christian Fennesz's reputation should precede him. A modern laptop pioneer, his solo records have balanced thoughtful electronics with guitar manipulations to become events that transcend the usual narrow audience for those types of experiments. In between albums, though, Fennesz maintains a healthy career as a collaborator and improviser, having worked with the likes of Jim O'Rourke and Peter Rehberg, Ryuichi Sakamoto, and Polwechsel (to name but a handful) on records that often manage to rival the greatness and intensity of the man's more noted solo works. Knoxville, a trio recording cut with David Daniell and Tony Buck at the Big Ears Festival in 2009, is yet another entry into that category of great collaborative works.

Though Fennesz may have the biggest name recognition in this group, his partners are far from slouches. David Daniell has released a clutch of great records (solo, as a member of San Agustin, and in concert with folks like Douglas McCombs) that trace his noisier figures across guitar and electronics. And Tony Buck has been active as a member of Australian group the Necks for the past two decades, providing drums and percussion for that band's steady improvisations. Here, the three spread themselves across four tracks, gradually working themselves into an easy conversation on "Heat for Light" that builds from a slow rumble to a more all-encompassing buzz and hum. Elsewhere, tracks like "Antonia" achieve a subtle beauty, with aching waves of guitar contrasting neatly with prickly static and Buck's cymbal work. While fairly brief, Knoxville more than manages to take the listener quite a distance in its short runtime, all while allowing each participant to make their own voice heard while still achieving a singular identity.
David Daniell visited Soundlab several times: on 07/22/04 with Tim Barnes, Jeph Jerman and Sean Meehan; on 09/20/05 with Greg Davis and Mersault; on 05/17/08 with Josh Abrams Solo & Duo sets, Tentet/Octet opening; and as part of Rhys Chatham's groups on 09/15/06 and 02/01/07.

Sunday, August 29

Sample James Blackshaw - All Is Falling

Part 1
Part 5


By AG for Other Music:
An ambitious, challenging album from the British 12-string virtuoso, All Is Falling continues James Blackshaw's movement away from the spiraling acoustic guitar opuses that defined his early work. Not a 12-string guitar can be found here, in fact. Picking up where Blackshaw's piano-derived tracks from Litany of Echoes (2008) and The Glass Bead Game (2009) left off, All Is Falling -- unsurprisingly given its ominous title -- is characterized by a brooding, cosmic quality.

Longtime fans will notice Blackshaw is playing the electric guitar for the first time on one of his own records, a move perhaps inspired by his recent work with Current 93. When at the piano, Blackshaw often recalls Florian Fricke's playing in Popol Vuh, particularly on "Part 1" and "Part 4," and comparisons could be made to minimalist composer/pianist Lubomyr Melnyk as well. Throughout, this haunting album can recall a diverse set of influences, ranging from John Renbourne's The Lady and the Unicorn to the brooding '90s work of Louisville chamber group Rachel's, and makes nods to Steve Reich and Philip Glass as well. Only "Part 8" deviates from piano, finger-picked electric guitar and classical string palette; harmonium, e-bowed guitar and swirls of feedback lift off before settling on an enigmatic, uncertain note. Appropriately enough.
James Blackshaw visited Soundlab on 01/29/10.

Friday, August 27

Hit Up Shock & Awe: Back to Cool Saturday at Soundlab

Saturday, August 28, 11pm--SHOCK & AWE feat. DJs J.Zenger & Kisabella.
Back to cool kiddies. Classes are starting and you need one more rage of the summer. Get your leather on on on on on.

Sample Bear in Heaven - Beast Rest Forth Mouth

Listen & buy.

From Other Music:
Hometapes re-releases Bear in Heaven's great sophomore full-length from last year, this time with a host of remixes by Studio, Twin Shadow, the Hundred in the Hands, High Places, the Field, Pink Skull, and more. Delivering an exciting blend of psychedelic, prog, and '80s-tinged pop, the group has perfected the art of layering, resulting in a dense-yet-wholly-listenable mix of driving, tribal cuts.
Bear in Heaven visited Soundlab on 6/26/10.

Check Out Fang Island Tonight at Soundlab

FRIDAY, August 27, 8pm--FANG ISLAND. $10/$12.

By Donny Kutzbach for Artvoice:
Imagine putting together the pop savant quality of Broken Social Scene with the inexorable party jams and bro on bro high fiving of Andrew WK. Got it? If you do, you are just beginning to get at the exuberant magic of the Brooklyn via Providence, Rhode Island quintet Fang Island. Vocals? Who really needs them!? Fang Island manages to get the good times done without really having a singer though the occasional “la-la-la” harmony slips in the mix on a song like “Davey Crockett”. Their 2010 self-titled debut on Sargent House Records is loaded with hook-heavy hymns played at high speeds and built for happy high kicking. Fang Island made a recent drop by in Western New York over the summer warming up for the mesmerizing Flaming Lips at Artpark. Their unbridled and energetic live show held it’s own even up against to the eye-popping extremes of the headliner. That’s no small feat! This Friday (August 27) they will bounce, jump, and blissfully rock out with extreme joy on a stage all to themselves... well, almost. Joining Fang Island on stage at Soundlab is Buffalo’s own All Of The Witches, fittingly bringing their uniquely psychedelically twisted post-rock to perfectly fill out the bill.

Thursday, July 8

See Nobody Beats the Drum Tonight at Soundlab

Thursday, July 8, 10pm--NOBODY BEATS THE DRUM, C-MON, KYPSKI.

Resistance is futile - Nobody. Beats. The Drum.

To fully appreciate Nobody Beats The Drum’s fusion of breaks, electro, hip hop and every other form of music that whips a crowd up into a sweaty, writhing heap of body parts, it’s best to see them live. At a NBTD show the pounding music created by Sjam’s decks and Jori’s keys are enhanced by Rogier’s visuals to create a sensual assault that’s impossible to withstand.

"Grindin" (released 2/26/10):

Purple Cactus" (great LIVE footage):

"Quit Your Job" (selected for the short film category at Cannes Film Festival):

"The Drum" (blogged about by Kanye West):



Friday, July 2

Check Out Mock Syringa, 28 Degrees Taurus & More Friday at Soundlab

Friday, July 2, 9pm--
Mock Syringa
Paul's Grandfather
28 Degrees Taurus
Here Come the Comets

It's 28 degrees taurus' first time back through Buffalo since March 2007! Come out and show them a warm buffalo welcome!

Wednesday, June 30

Hear New Thermals - "I Don't Believe You"

By Tom Breihan for Pitchfork:
On September 7, Kill Rock Stars will release Personal Life, the new album from inveterate Portland punk bashers the Thermals. And on August 10, KRS will release the album's first single, the characteristically catchy pummel "I Don't Believe You", as both a 7" single and a digital download. (It's backed by the B-side "There's Nothing You Can't Learn".) You can download the track simply by clicking here. If you needed a reason to pogo frantically on a Tuesday morning, you now have one.
The Thermals visited Soundlab on 05/02/09 with Shaky Hands and Point Juncture, WA.

Andrew Bird Brings Sound Sculpture Installation to Guggenheim (NYC)

By Tom Breihan for Pitchfork:
Whistling indie star Andrew Bird has teamed up with sculptor and inventor Ian Schneller on a sound sculpture called "Sonic Arboretum", which will come to New York's Guggenheim Museum on August 5. Schneller, formerly of the 80s experimental indie band Shrimp Boat, has built an army of various-sized horn speakers shaped like old-fashioned Victrolas, which will be arranged into an "ecosystem" on the Guggenheim's rotunda floor.

If you've seen Andrew Bird play live, you've probably seen Schneller's work in action, as Bird usually performs using his horns. You can see a few images of Bird and Schneller among the horns on this website.

On August 5, Bird will perform in the sound sculpture, using the forest of horns to project his music. It's part of the Guggenheim's Dark Sounds Concert Series, which also includes a show from Beirut on July 15 and one from Cinematic Orchestra on September 3. Dark Sounds is in conjunction with the exhibition "Haunted: Contemporary Photography/Video/Performance", which runs at the famed museum until September 6.

In a press release, Bird explains "Sonic Arboretum" as sounding like "The din of many voices. When the mind focuses on a single voice, it is forced to track its trajectory. When there are too many to process it submits, but never fully relaxes. Echolocation is always engaged. Dozens of horns, a sonic field of poppies, an experiment of sound and sculpture."
On 11/03/04 Andrew Bird played Soundlab with The Stay Lows, John Long/Amber Long.

Monday, June 21

See The Friction Brothers at Hallwalls

Monday, Jun 21, 8pm, $15 general, $10 members/students/seniors, Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center--THE FRICTION BROTHERS

Michael Colligan (dry ice, implements)
Fred Lonberg-Holm (cello, implements)
Michael Zerang (percussion, piano insides)

The Friction Brothers are perhaps the only dry-ice/cello/percussion trio in the visible world. Begun in 2005 to perform improvised works that explore their love of scraping, rubbing, hitting and freezing various objects to the point of vibration, they have appeared at a number of questionable venues in Chicago. While often sounding like electronic music, they make all their sounds mechanically. To produce these sounds each member has developed an expansive vocabulary of extended techniques. Zerang has raised the back scratcher to an essential component of the modern drummer's stick collection. Colligan warms up metal objects and the super cools them on a block of dry ice making them vibrate in the audible range. Lonberg-Holm's grind tone remains an unexplainable phenomena by acousticians ... Although the trio is a relatively new group, the members have worked together extensively for over 15 years in a wide variety of settings from the seminal lowercase quartet Pillow to the internationally known free improvised jazz powerhouse Peter Brötzmann's Chicago Tentet.

Friday, June 18

Read: Hire-Wire Act to Tout Art Exhibit

By Colin Dabkowski for the Buffalo News:
In downtown Buffalo, where the skyline has held its shape for more than 30 years, visitors usually keep their eyes trained at ground level.

But on a Thursday in September, anyone within viewing distance will have a good reason to look up.

On Sept. 23, French performance artist Didier Pasquette plans to attempt a tightrope walk across a steel cable strung between the two towers of the 23-story Liberty Building.
Read the rest here.

Wednesday, June 16

Attend Screwed Anthologies with Dave Dove & Lucas Gorham at Hallwalls

Wed., Jun. 16, 2010, 8pm, $12 general, $8 members/students/seniors, Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center--SCREWED ANTHOLOGIES WITH DAVE DOVE & LUCAS GORHAM.

Dave Dove (amplified trombone with effects, screw tracks) Lucas Gorham (guitar, lap steel guitar, effects, loops)

Wednesday, June 2

Read "Reich's Adventurous Music Propels Festival's Start"

By Geraud MacTaggart for the Buffalo News:
June in Buffalo is always interesting, and this year’s version of the venerable festival of modern classical music promises to be more of the same.

Young composers get their works performed by world-class musicians and critiqued by master composers. For a solid week, all kinds of sounds come from the auditoriums and classrooms at the University at Buffalo’s Amherst campus, and people come from across the continent to sample them.

Steve Reich’s scores have had a prominent place at June in Buffalo recitals during the last decade, and Monday night’s performance of “Sextet” and his 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winning “Double Sextet” was an early highlight of the season.
Read the rest here.

Saturday, May 29

See Arrington De Dionyso Malaikat Dan Singa Tonight at Soundlab


By Santo Peligro for Tiny Mix Tapes:
In the Dungeons and Dragons game of life, we all know Arrington de Dionyso, the bearded lion frontman of Old Time Relijun. We've been incanted by his swamptastic booty-beats before, but Arrington as angelic philosopher-alchemist is an understated secret weapon. No party may expect to surmount dragons on the brute force of barbarians and broadswords alone. I See Beyond the Black Sun, as well as his contributions to Melted Mailbox (The True Folk Sound of Arrington de Dionyso) are both good introductions to this side of his work. Within this, one might see Arrington the alchemist, spinning the very golden hair of his lion's beard from straw, as a shaman might don a mask to transform from contemplative village elder into exorcist or oracle.

On Malaikat dan Singa ("Angels and Lions" in Indonesian), Mr. de Dionyso effectively presents both his lion and angel within as equals. Fusing together the kraut-rocking, beastly beats he is known for with his apothecary of extended techniques (Tuvan throat singing, anyone?) creates an assault of psychedelic rock that is unparalleled in brains, brawn, and sentience. Arrington's strengths as a dynamic performer have never been captured so well on record as they are here. His voice is commanding and uninhibited. He puts his whole body behind his roarings, as would a lion, but retains a sensitive command to resonance and vibration. The entire release is sung in Indonesian, which alone takes brains and brawn. That being said, the music is not 'world music' but rather other-world music. It is evocative of indigenous music, but it is as if he aims to recreate that feeling of discovery rather than mastering the discovered.

Check Out UNITE Music Festival: VIP Nick Catchdubs After Party Tonight at Soundlab

Sunday, May 30, midnight--This party is FREE, but only UNITE Fest VIP pass holders will be admitted. Get your pass here:
Starting at midnight after the Nick Catchdubs party at Fontana's, head to soundlab to hear the likes of.. Loki, Huxley, Tweeknasty
..and a special, secret guest!!!

18+ if room allows, otherwise VIP pass holders only!

Monday, May 24

Listen to Sharing a Sonority feat Charlemagne Palestine, Tony Conrad & Rhys Chatham

Listen & Buy.

By Marc Moeller for Other Music:
This fourth volume of Alga Marghen's "Golden" series of archival material by Charlemagne Palestine presents rare documentation of the pianist in collaboration with fellow travelers. The opening piece, "Short and Sweet," is descriptively titled, and Palestine's sparse, melodic piano playing is like a precursor to the style best exemplified by Harold Budd. The track is the only recorded evidence of a series of regular meetings Palestine had with saxophonist Terry Jennings while at CalArts in the seventies. "Electronic and Flute" feels like an exercise in withholding; the pace is sluggish, with Palestine and flautist Robert Feldman coming across as intent on merely laying out a sound palette, which consists of sparse flute punctuated by electronic squiggles. It would be great if a future volume unearths a long form piece by the duo, as this feels more like a sketch. The real gem of this set, however, is the 32-minute "Db," the only recorded section of an all-afternoon concert from 1974 by Palestine, Tony Conrad and Rhys Chatham. Palestine is on vocals throughout much of the piece, wailing away in his inimitable devotional style, possibly fueled by an inhuman amount of Cognac. Having recently heard Conrad apply his violin drone to a number of situations involving contemporary underlings, it's refreshing to hear him matched with an equal talent. I'm not sure exactly what "The Rhyster" is up to here, but he's certainly not standing out in a negative sense. Palestine's notes in the CD version mention him playing flute and experimenting with the Buchla synthesizer some five years prior, though I can't particularly detect either sound here. These three are on the same wavelength, despite having never played as a trio before or since this date. This stunning track alone ensures that the set is worth obtaining. It's a good thing La Monte Young wasn't around that night, or we may have had to wait even longer to hear this unique piece of music history.
Tony Conrad has played Soundlab a zillion times. Click on the tag below to find out when. Chatham performed at Soundlab with his minimalist death metal project Essentialist on 09/15/06. On 02/01/07, he assembled a group of Buffalo musicians to realize his seminal no wave-minimalist piece Guitar Trio. Read Chatham's account of the show.

Sunday, May 23

Listen to New Holy Fuck - Latin

Listen & Buy.

MP3 "Stay Lit"
MP3 "Stilettos"

From Other Music:
Holy Fuck's third full-length finds this one-time duo now drafting their touring rhythm section as full-time members and recording their first album as a quartet. This new version of the band is indeed new and improved, with the live drums and bass ensuring that the group's noisy and often spastic fusion of synths and dance beats is all the more heavy and heady. (CD includes Ghost EP.)
Holy Fuck performed with Mark Webb and Fourem/Rainbowmaker at Soundlab on 06/15/06.

Saturday, May 22

Experience Seizure-Inducing Free Jazz, Bass-tastic Noisepunk & Dronescapes of Dark Matter Tonight at Soundlab


Tiger Hatchery: Life, imitating art, imitating running barefoot from an avalanche. Long-form, seizure inducing free jazz.

Lechuguillas: Remembering what happened after you punched the cop. Bass-tastic noisepunk, amphetamines required.

Kier Neuringer's The Love Story: Casiotone for the painfully wounded. Dronescapes of darkmatter.

Price/Trump Duo: Awkward sounds forming street gangs in common territory. Guitar/drums/electronics/freedom.

Friday, May 21

Listen to New Phosphorescent - Here's to Taking It Easy, See Them Live at Soundlab July 12

Listen & Buy.

MP3 "It's Hard to Be Humble (When You're from Alabama)"
MP3 "Tell Me Baby"

By JM for Other Music:
If you've been paying attention to Matthew Houck and his Phosphorescent releases over the past few years, enjoying the hazy, lazy Pride, essentially a solo album from 2007 that won Houck praise and comparisons to folk-Americana artists of all eras and stripes, or the much-heralded 2009 album of outlaw-period Willie Nelson covers that Houck recorded with his touring band in tow, you probably have been aware of the temperature rising and expectations flying around the release of the group's new record. Sometimes there is just a feeling in the air that an artist's time is coming, and Here's to Taking It Easy, despite the title, marks the arrival of a musician who has been knocking around for closing in on a decade, but is clearly launching a new, and much higher-profile, stage of his career. Debut single and album-opener "It's Hard to Be Humble (When You're from Alabama)" warms up with the gentle atmospherics of a pedal-steel and electric piano reminiscent of the musings of Houck's albums past, but within moments a crashing hi-hat count brings in the punch of a tight honky-tonk horn section, and it's clear this Phosphorescent is something new.

Houck's shaky, haunting whiskey-and-cigarettes voice is the same, but his songs have deepened and swelled with newfound emotion and pathos. He carries it with a confident strut and swagger that is nonetheless utterly embracing, and his band delivers a thrilling country/R&B swing that -- no exaggeration -- can hold its own with classic cuts from Jim Ford, the Stones and Neil Young. Many tracks rock and many have a lazy lope not too far removed from Phosphorescent's older sound, but with warmly layered piano, steel guitar, acoustic and whatever else fits over the gentle sway of the rhythm section, there is a lush and timeless sound here that is irresistible. Houck's subject matter is fairly standard pop fare -- love, lust and failed relationships are the norm, when 'Bama pride is on the backburner, but his imagery is as moving as is his raw voice and powerful band.

Forever stuck in my head is the broken marriage of "Mermaid Parade," as Houck tries to forget his failures in the annual bacchanalia on Coney Island. His simple story is as richly-layered as is his band's production -- in a few words he conveys the passion of love and commitment, and then two years of marriage simply slipping away, taking responsibility and not, reveling in the beautiful painted women in the parade, and wanting his ex there with him to see it all too. It is a complicated and convincing portrait of life that is too rare in pop.

"I know all about your new man, your new older, old man, and I heard that he's married. Oh, you be careful Amanda. // Yeah, I found a new friend too, and yeah she's pretty and small, goddamnit Amanda, oh god damn all. // I wound up walking, by the ocean today, there were naked women dancing, in the Mermaid Parade. Oh Amanda, did you see me today, watching those women dance, in the Mermaid Parade. And oh, Amanda, were you with me today, watching those women waltz by, in the Mermaid Parade."

Wednesday, May 19

Listen to New Phantogram - Eyelid Movies

Listen & Buy.

By Jacob Kaplan for Other Music:
Here's the debut full-length from Phantogram, an often genre-dodging (yet consistently catchy) duo from Greenwhich, NY. Made up of Sarah Barthel and guitar man Josh Carter, this isn't your average boy-girl indie team. While they write incredibly sticky songs, and occasionally verge on a more conventional "rock" formula (see "All Dried Up," a pulsing pop ballad of the highest order), Phantogram also have a penchant for house beats and hazy, trip-hop-inspired atmospheres. "Turn It Off," for example, features a grinding, club-like pulse throughout, and "Bloody Palms" is a dark, neo-disco masterpiece, a song that is pretty, eerie, and danceable, all at once. Of course, Eyelid Movies will appeal to plenty of us who aren't beat connoisseurs; the group's love of electronic rhythms sets them apart from the indie pop set, sure, but Phantogram are by no means a one-trick pony. Arguably, some of strongest moments on the album are the hooks; the chorus to "Mouthful of Diamonds" is reason enough to add this one to your collection. And the combination of simple, driving bass and spare melody on "When I'm Small" is equally alluring. Fuzzed-out synth/guitar washes will inspire comparisons to that hazy, trebly Bailter Space/Swirlies sound but clearly, Phantogram aren't shoegazers either, as exampled by "Running from the Cops," an edgy dubstep-influenced gem. There's really no need to classify these guys, as they make great music. Can't wait for the next release.
Phantogram played Soundlab on 04/15/10.

Read "A Literary Lion Grapples with ‘Shhh’ that Saved Him": Shhh: The Story of a Childhood By Raymond Federman

By Jeff Simon for the Buffalo News:
The story that haunted Raymond Federman’s life also, in a lesser way, haunted everyone who ever knew him. And that’s an enormous number of people, here and elsewhere, for this was one of the most revered and influential figures in the avant-garde of Buffalo because of his decades of teaching at the University at Buffalo.

He died of cancer in October, but his legacy is large and growing. Federman’s intellectual offspring— to his eternal credit and our luck—surround us, whether we’re talking about Hallwalls executive director Ed Cardoni or News literary blogger R. D. Pohl or Ted Pelton, whose Starcherone Press is the posthumous English language publisher of Federman’s final book, whose official publication day was Saturday, which would have been his 82nd birthday.

Federman remains a significant cultural force here.
Click to read the rest.

Saturday, May 15

Attend Bflo Pnk 1.0: The Buffalo Punk Documentary Project at Squeaky Wheel

Saturday, May 15, 7pm, Squeaky Wheel, 712 Main Street, $5--BFLO PNK 1.0: THE BUFFALO PUNK DOCUMENTARY PROJECT.
An oral and aural account, a living history, of the punk rock era – equal parts homage and collage to the Buffalo scene, circa 1977-85. In this film, Elmer Ploetz weaves together a series of interviews, archival footage, photos, posters and recent reunion footage to recapture the excitement and power of the era – a time whose influence echoes today throughout the local independent music scene.

The documentary is actually just the start of the Bflo Pnk Project. It’s a jumping off point for what is turning into a community history project using the facebook social networking service (

Also, with the availability of digital editing, the film is expected to go through revision, re-editing and rewriting in coming years. In addition, footage and resources that don’t make it into the film will also be included online at, where the audience will be able to search for clips and put them onto a timeline to create their own videos. The audience will also be encouraged to contribute to the knowledge base/resource base, creating a wiki multimedia history of the era. The website is currently in development.

For more information or for interviews, contact Elmer Ploetz at

Friday, May 14

Attend Precious Cargo: An Evening of Film and Live Multimedia Performance Tonight at Hallwalls

Friday, May. 14, 8pm, $8 general, $6 students/seniors, $5 members--PRECIOUS CARGO: An Evening of Film and Live Multimedia Performance.
In conjunction with UB Art Gallery's exhibition Precious Cargo, guest curator Paul Sargent presents Time Machine: a multi-media performance by Bill Brown and Sabine Gruffat. Hacking a variety of interfaces and collapsing digital/analog signals, the artists will guide us through a parallel universe.

The evening will include a screening of Thomas Comerford's Land Marked/Marquette (2005, 23 min., 16mm), a study of monuments erected for the 17th century explorer and missionary Jacques Marquette.

Sunday, May 9

Attend "A Sunday Afternoon, Visions of War and the Way We Hear It" at the BPAC Today

Sunday, May 9, 2pm, Burchfield Penney Art Center, 1300 Elmwood Ave--A SUNDAY AFTERNOON, VISIONS OF WAR AND THE WAY WE HEAR IT.
Vintage film of WW2 and other conflicts accompanied by Poverty Hymns, VWLS and KG Price with video interludes from Brian Milbrand. Ambient sounds and recorded and manipulated samples from JFK, Winston Churchill and Buffalo's own, William Sylvester. Students $5, Adults $9 (there is a coupon for buy one, get one in the "Buffalo First" Books for the Burchfield!)

Tuesday, May 4

Attend Circuit Circus (Real Space Electronic Art Festival) at Soundlab Tonight

Tuesday, May 4, 7pm, free--CIRCUIT CIRCUS (Real Space Electronic Art Festival)

Monday, May 3

Listen to New Daniel Higgs - "Hoofprints On The Ceiling of Your Mind"

By Brandon for Stereogum:
I have much respect for Daniel Higgs. His music, his tattooing, his politics, his art … I’ve gone into it previously — Growing up, his minimal, transcendent raga-like Dischord post-hardcore group Lungfish was one of the essential bands in my core musical cosmology: The work’s incantatory, questing, spiritual, punk. (It offered such an essential, heady, muscular outlet for those of us who were sick of hardcore’s more dude-ish atmosphere.) Lungfish has never officially called it quits, but haven’t released anything since 2005’s Feral Hymns. Otherwise, Higgs has been pursuing excellent, eccentric solo work, using long-neck banjo, jew’s harp, crusty noise, organ drone, bird songs, art, alchemy, and that authoritative voice to bring us his personal Gospel/life philosophy (check out Ancestral Songs). After a few home-recorded (to cassette) collections, his new gathering of “song seeds,” the meditative, unruly Say God, was produced by Dave Sitek, who thankfully keeps things spare and spacious (though he does clean it up a bit). Higgs lays out some of Say’s major themes in the hypnotic opening sermon “Hoofprints On The Ceiling Of Your Mind.” Holy Bible time.
On 04/30/07 Daniel A.I.U. Belteshazzar-Higgs with Chiara Giovando performed with Brightblack Morninglight.

Sunday, May 2

Listen to New Books - "Beautiful People"

By Ryan Dombal for Pitchfork:
Found sound collage gurus the Books return with a new album this July on Temporary Residence. The album is called The Way Out and here's your first listen.

"Beautiful People" boasts backwards vox, calming singing about science and math, brass, and a (relatively) rigorous drum beat. Nobody else really makes music like this.
On 05/01/06 The Books played Soundlab with Todd Reynolds and The Sleeping Kings of Iona.

Saturday, May 1

Attend Runway 3.0, then the Afterparty feat. Shock & Awe at Soundlab

From Artvoice:
"I think people are going to freak out on Saturday!” enthuses Erin Habes, producer of Runway 3.0, this year’s installment of the annual fashion extravaganza showcasing original works by students of Buffalo State’s Fashion Technology Department as well as noted Western New York designers Holly Hue, Aella, Morgen Love, and Adam Lippes.

Her turn of phrase is especially appropriate considering this year’s installment, which promises even more spectacle than in years past, involves the transformation of 20,000 square feet of raw space in Elmwood Avenue’s historic Pierce Arrow Building. Once responsible for manufacturing the early 20th century’s most luxurious ride, the cavernous warehouse later provided rehearsal space for the original Superfreak, Buffalo punk-funk icon Rick James.

There are two shows on Saturday, May 1, at 4pm and 9pm, followed by the requisite afterparty, and of course, the after-afterparty featuring Shock & Awe at Soundlab at 11pm. All proceeds benefit a scholarship fund for the Fashion Technology program.
Read the rest of the feature here.

Attend Artists & Models: Stimulus Tonight at Rock Harbor Yard

In the past 21 incarnations of Hallwalls' Artists & Models Affair, a multitude of Buffalo sites have served as the locus for temporary artistic expressions and controlled insanity: the Broadway Market, abandoned factories, warehouses, auto showrooms, roller rinks, deserted downtown malls and department stores, the Tri-Main Center, and the Buffalo Convention Center. This year's event—officially, the 22nd version of A&M—will take place at Rock Harbor Yard, conveniently located a few minutes from Buffalo State College and Elmwood Village. As always, our site for A&M represents a location, a state of being, a condition, an apparition, a temporary psychosis, an inevitably, a breeding ground for frivolity.

Thursday, April 29

Read R.D. Pohl On the New York Times Book Review of Charles Bernstein's All the Whiskey in Heaven

By R.D. Pohl for the Buffalo News Artsbeat:
If there remained any doubt that "Language writing"--once the scourge of the sclerotic "Official Verse Culture" and mainstream literary media in the United States that it sought to critique--is now the dominant linguistic frame through which literary innovation is parsed, last week's laudatory New York Times Book Review of Charles Bernstein's All The Whiskey in Heaven: Selected Poems (Farrar, Straus & Giroux) convincingly puts it to rest.

If the occasion of the review is Bernstein's first volume of poems "not published by a university or independent press," what reviewer Daisy Fried writes about the former University at Buffalo professor and co-founder of the UB Poetics program ("famous as a poet and anti-poet") is a kind of performative utterance:

With “All the Whiskey in Heaven,” ...Bernstein takes his place in the mainstream of American poetry, the very “Official Verse Culture” he’s attacked entertainingly for years — a fate awaiting all our best outsiders. Bernstein is identified with the Language poets, who emerged in the 1970s. Interested in the materiality of language, they are politically left, theoretically grounded and deeply suspicious of the lyric “I” that speaks from the heart in traditional poems without examining its own existence in a sociopolitical power structure.

If the New York Times Book Review, ostensibly the house organ of the "Official Verse Culture" in the United States proclaims it, it must necessarily be a fait accompli. Never mind that All the Whiskey in Heaven is the first of Bernstein's sixteen full length collections of poetry and five books of essays over the past three decades ever to earn a New York Times review. Never before has the ascent from persona non grata to literary icon been accomplished with such selective hindsight.

In the current (Spring 2010) issue of BOMB Magazine Bernstein is interviewed by journalist Jay Sanders on the origins of L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E magazine (the title for which Bernstein attributes to co-founder Bruce Andrews), the various misconceptions that arose about language writing, and its influence on a broad range of 21st century poetics. In response to a question from Sanders about the perceived "militant aesthetic break" from prevailing poetic practice that the procedural and constraint-based techniques of language writing is thought to have represented, Bernstein avers:

When we started L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E we were trying to open up conversations across divides. As you say, rather than trying to narrow things down, the journal was about dialogue not just among poets of the same generation and the same perspective, but among poets of different generations, and also with those in the other arts. Still, the reaction in terms of the parochial world of poetry was that somehow something exclusive was being launched. We proposed an alternative to what then dominated as respectable poetry. Ours was a poetics of (some of) the excluded....

...We tried to trace a history of radical poetics, taking up the model presented in Jerome Rothenberg’s Revolution of the Word, and later by Rothenberg and Pierre Joris in Poems for the Millennium and Marjorie Perloff in The Futurist Moment. When you go back 30 years, you see that poetics that now are widely accepted as foundational for contemporary poetry were harshly rejected then. Poetry’s center of gravity has shifted to the poetic left, to call it that, though not everyone has heard the news. Even in the more mainstream poetry magazines now there’s a certain amount of work that is far looser and formally radical than you would have seen in the mid-’70s.

Asked about to what extent he and peers contributed to an "opening of the field" (Robert Duncan's phrase) for innovation, Bernstein points out that "...some recent poetry and poetics concertedly take out the contentiousness from formal invention." Discussing the 2009 Norton American Hybrid poetry anthology, he observes that "while the editors welcome a certain kind of elliptical, fragmented style, they also try to find a happy mean between extremes."

It's what he says next that speaks to the lasting influence of Language writing on 21st century poetics:

For me, it’s the extremity, the eccentricity, even the didacticism, that shakes things up. When poetry becomes normalized and more oriented toward craft, it loses the point. I’m not interested in any of the styles, per se, that were developed in the ’70s and ’80s—my own or anybody else’s. The issue was never stylistic technique as such. You have to read that era in the context of the intense resistance to nonlinear poetry, to algorithmic forms, to appropriated language, and non-“I”-centered poems—all of which are now accepted. Even the procedural is just one technique or form that emerges, sometimes zombie-like, to reveal hidden codes, or other times just as textile, as generator of texture.

In this sense, it's not the "mainstream" of American poetry that Bernstein and Armantrout have entered; it's the river itself that has changed its course.

Read "The Look of Music, on Show in Dublin": Morton Feldman & Abstract Painting

By Mariana Schroeder for The Wall Street Journal:
Dublin: As a composer, Morton Feldman was part of an avant-garde movement called the New York school -- the abstract expressionists of music. In fact, he said his music was abstract painting, and demonstrated his devotion to the idea by dedicating pieces to friends whose art inspired him; artist friends, in turn, dedicated works to him. In 1967 Feldman even curated a show in Houston, Texas, called "Six Painters" (the six being Philip Guston, Franz Kline, Willem de Kooning, Piet Mondrian, Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko). It's a connection the Irish Museum of Modern Art celebrates with its exhibit "Vertical Thoughts."
Read the rest here.

Download "Acres of Skin," the Glittering, Skronking New Single From Zs, Read Q&A with Tenor Saxophonist Sam Hillmer

By Christopher Weingarten for the Village Voice Sound of the City blog:
Brooklyn's Zs have always walked a jagged line between 21st Century composers and bratty art-punks; their voluminous, decade-strong output evokes everything from Schoenberg's jagged beep-boops to Glass's hypnotic minimalism to the headbanging abandon of crusty loft-party noiseniks. Despite having armloads of singles, EPs, and live albums, New Slaves (due May 11 on the Social Registry) is only their second proper record, and it moves the band fearlessly into more rhythmic, noisy, and downright terrifying waters. Anyone who's seen Zs recently knows they have abandoned their infamous music stands and sheet music. Instead, the band has transformed itself into a battering ram of brackish sound and befuddling rhythms--think of Steve Reich phasing experiments produced into a blackened soup by the Boredoms and you're getting close; think Black Dice performed by Sun Ra and you're getting closer. "Acres Of Skin" showcases the band's gnarly new feel, with saxophonist Sam Hillmer squonking out inhuman squeals, dual guitarists Annon Friedlin and Ben Greenberg (full disclosure, an old pal) creating a detuned, rhythmic ooze, and drummer Ian Antonio earnestly clapping and pounding along.
Read the rest here. Zs played Soundlab on 01/29/07 with Cages. They returned 04/22/08 to perform on a bill that also included Ecstatic Sunshine and Cex.

Watch Mary Halvorson on Roulette TV

By plwn for the Roulette blog:
On March 18th, 2010 at Roulette, guitarist/composer Mary Halvorson premiered a set of new pieces for the Mary Halvorson Quintet as well as material from her upcoming release on Firehouse 12 Records. Halvorson has been active in New York since 2002, following jazz studies at Wesleyan University and the New School. In addition to her own band, The Mary Halvorson Trio, she co-leads a chamber music duo with violist Jessica Pavone and the avant-rock band, People, with drummer Kevin Shea.
Mary has played Soundlab in a handful of different incarnations, including MAP with Tatsuya Nakatani and most recently, the Halverson/Jessica Pavone Duo, which made a return visit on 2/15/10. Check it out here.

Tuesday, April 27

See Royal Bangs Tonight at Soundlab

Tuesday, April 27, 9pm, $10-12--ROYAL BANGS. By Cory Perla for Artvoice:
Royal Bangs from Nashville, Tennessee, will bring their mixture of indie rock and electronic pulses to Soundlab on Tuesday (April 27). Formerly a five piece, the band has condensed down to three. Anchored by keyboardist/vocalist Ryan Schaefer, their music is a blend of familiar sounding indie rock and electronic synth laser tones. Percussionist Chris Rusk plays his style of fast and precise drumming while guitarist Sam Stratton leads the trio with fidgety overdriven guitar riffs. The music has a clear science fiction influence to it. The video for their latest single “War Bells” portrays a furry alien creature pulling human body parts from his gut and laying them on a psychedelic contraption which eventually brings the body parts to life. Of course, our alien friend is continuously shooting lasers from his finger tips in synchronization with the song. The track sounds like it could be a B-side to Beck’s Guerro or The Information, while others like “My Car Is Haunted” have a dance-punk sound similar to bands like Friendly Fires or White Denim. Both tracks belong to their recently released, and appropriately titled, full length album Let It Beep.

Sunday, April 25

Read - Robert Dick Interview

By plwn for the Roulette blog:
Robert Dick’s contributions to the development of the flute and its music are profound. With equally deep roots in classical music old and new, free improvisation and new jazz, he is known as the flute’s visionary. On April 18, at Roulette, Robert Dick teams up with visual improviser Joshue Ott and electronic musician Billy Gomberg for Dog or God – an immersive, improvised experience, unabashedly journeying from maelstrom to serenity via spontaneous emotional ports of call.

ROULETTE: Tell us as about the work you’ll be doing at Roulette.

ROBERT DICK: Dog or God “originated” when I saw Joshue Ott do his superDraw live video improvisations with the American Composers Orchestra a couple of years ago. The music on that program didn’t do to much for me, but I was blown away by Joshue’s work and thought that I’d have to make contact with him.
Read the rest here. Robert Dick performed with Steve Baczkowski and Ravi Padmanaba at Soundlab on 07/14/05.

Attend "Soundzilla" Sound Art Show Tonight at Soundlab

Sunday, April 25, 7pm FREE--SOUNDZILLA.
SOUNDZILLA is a collection of final projects by students in Intermediate Sound Art, an undergraduate-level course taught by Jessica Thompson in the Department of Media Study, University at Buffalo. This exhibition is supported by the Department of Media Study and Soundlab. Many of the projects are interactive. Gallery visitors will be invited to participate in the projects over the course of the evening.

Featuring work by: Geoffrey Cook; Laura Diemer; Alec Erlebacher; Martin Freeman; Erica Grisanti; David Jamieson; Kirill Kolomyts; Ryan Mallette; Allen Mapenzauswa; Julia Norris; Michael Schmitz; Carl Smith; Will Stachnik; Alex Sunga; Jerry Theresanathan; EJ Vogel; Jesse Wekerle.

Saturday, April 24

Listen to Junior Boys Remix Caribou

By Tom Breihan for Pitchfork:
Swim, the new Caribou album, just became the fourth Caribou LP to score Best New Music props (counting 2003's Up in Flames, released under the name Manitoba). We like us some Caribou over here, and here's even more: a remix of Swim's first single "Odessa", by Junior Boys. It's available as a bonus track if you buy Swim from iTunes or you can listen to it here.
Caribou played Soundlab in the summer of 2008. Junior Boys hit Soundlab on 11/03/09 with Wooden Hand.

Read - Nels Cline Interview

By Tad Hendrickson for
Nels Cline was been straddling the line between jazz and rock guitar since the late '70s. He got his start working with jazz musicians of the likes of Julius Hemphill, Charlie Haden and Tim Berne, while also doing more rock-oriented stuff with Mike Watt, the Geraldine Fibbers and others, though his major claim to fame these days is his gig as lead guitarist for Wilco. While that band is seemingly on a never-ending tour, Cline has found time to work with his main band, the Nels Cline Singers, as well as a side project with Yuka Honda called Fig, with other stuff coming down the pipe, as well. We caught up with Cline on the day his excellent new album, 'Initiate,' came out on Cryptogramophone. Read the interview here.
Nels Cline visited Mohawk Place on 10/01/01 as part of Gregg Bendian's Interzone featuring Gregg Bendian/Nels Cline/Kermit Driscol/Alex Cline. The show was a Hallwalls/Soundlab co-production.

Attend Big Night: Ecopoetics Season Finale Tonight at WNYBAC

Saturday, April 24, Western New York Book Arts Center, 2nd Floor, 468 Washington St. @ Mohawk. Just Buffalo presents Big Night: Ecopoetics Season Finale. The program will feature poetry from JONATHAN SKINNER, art by JULIAN MONTAGUE, and sound and video installations by LEAH RICO. During her tenure as Big Orbit Gallery's Gallery Director, Leah was instrumental in helping launch the Soundlab program. Julian is an old friend who debuted his Shopping Cart Project installation in the gallery at the original Soundlab back in 2002.

Friday, April 23

Attend We Are, an Exhibition of New Drawings, Prints & Peformance by Hyeyoung Shin at Big Orbit Gallery Tonight

Friday, April 23, 8-11 (opening reception--performance begins 8:30), Big Orbit Gallery, 30d Essex St.
The series “We are” explores the concept of creating memories in the present as the viewer moves along with images of human feet. “We are” consists of graphite drawings on individual sheets of paper and on clothing that I made out of Korean paper. I see the paper as an embodiment of culture with the ability to hold and communicate experiences and memories like human skin. 

I am also fascinated with how the empty space on paper allows us to put ourselves directly into the space. I strive to create some sort of an ambiguous space where we are not able to define ourselves through the notion of race, language and culture. We can only realize ourselves as a human being without prejudice. The space is for pure empathy that people can understand each other not by their own cultural background but by their visual perception from a visual language that they see. I’m engaged with organic form and part of the human body to guide viewers to a space that I want to create among us. 

In my “Feet Washing” performance, I want to expand the idea of space one step further for the viewers. I seek to create direct dialogue by providing access to myself as a host. I see myself as a creator of a theatrical situation that elevates one’s capacity for empathy. The representation of feet washing can be understood as an action of acceptance and caring of humanity. I choose the action of feet washing as a tool of empathy not only because I have a Catholic upbringing but also because this event suggests a global culture that different people can recognize as being a thoughtful communication method.

Listen to The xx Remix YACHT

By Tom Breihan for Pitchfork:
That freaky-looking image you see above is the cover art to YACHT's "The Afterlife" single. The single, now available digitally from DFA, includes a motley assortment of folks remixing the See Mystery Lights track: Andrew W.K., DAT Politics, Joy Electric, May Ling, and, most notably, the xx. You can stream the xx's dubsteppy take on the track over at the DFA website right now.

It's nice to see that YACHT and the xx didn't let their opposing stances on capitalization get in the way of working together.
YACHT played soundlab first on 08/27/07 with Dirty Projectors and Vampire Weekend. On 03/07/10, YACHT returned with MNDR, Bobby Birdman.

Watch New Dosh Video - "Airlift"

By Jessica for Stereogum:
Martin Dosh still creates the complex electro-acoustic mash he’s known for here on his fifth LP, Tommy (named for a friend who passed, not the Who), but there’s more room in his song structures. Sometimes that room is for guest vocalists, like longtime collaborator Andrew Bird. Other times it just adds space to breathe. “Airlift” fits the latter. Even “Airlift’”s video, with its central character surrounded by books, records, and photographs, says something about letting go of stuff (objects or instruments) to introduce some calm. The video was directed by Shal Ngo.
Fog played Mohawk Place as part of a Soundlab Presents bill on 05/20/03 with Fog and the Murder Group. On 11/01/06 he returned to share a bill with Sleeping Kings of Iona and DJ MJB Corp.

Stream the National's High Violet Today

By Rob Harvilla for the Village Voice's Sound of the City:
It ain't out until May 11, but it leaked, you see, and the band would rather you hear a high-quality version. From their MySpace:

Hi everyone!
As you may have heard, there is a low quality leak of our new album, High Violet, spreading across the Internet as we speak. We wanted to let you know the New York Times will be streaming the real thing starting Friday April 23rd. We hope you'll take the time to hear the album at its intended level of quality.

High Violet will be released by 4AD worldwide on May 10th/11th.

This would seem to be the Times' maiden voyage in terms of a streaming a record pre-release; we suspect they've picked a good record to start with.
The National first played Buffalo at Big Orbit Gallery on 05/30/01 with Mia Doi Todd and Clogs. They return to co-headline Rockin' at the Knox with Rufus Wainright on Friday, June 18, 2010.

Thursday, April 22

Experience Funtime Costumed Goofballism with Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt!, Shock & Awe DJs & The Shakes Tonight at Soundlab

Thursday, April 22, 9pm, $5--LAST MINUTE ***SURPRISE*** SHOW (spread the word): TERROR PIGEON DANCE REVOLT! with SHOCK & AWE DJS & THE SHAKES

Check out pictures from the last TPDR show at Soundlab here.

At first thought, the obtuse band name "Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt!" seems typically hipster absurdist, a funtime linguistic throwaway, but the spectacle it describes is not so much a band as an interactive dance party, although not just any dance party: it's like a nursery school class gone awry, except everyone is in their twenties. The room is filled with random toys, balloons and strung up lights, and the performers are more likely to pass out baked goods, or help you select random costumes or props, than perform carefully rehearsed songs. What you get is 8 performers led by founder Neil Fridd chanting simplistically subversive sing-along ditties against a backdrop of indie-electronic beats, but what really makes it all work is the way that audience and performer dissolve into each another. If your idea of fun involves a grown man in stuffed animal-covered jumpsuit, get your slice of pizza-costumed self down to Soundlab this Thursday.

Attend Video Vs Film Tonight at Sugar City

Thursday, April 22, 7-10--VIDEO VS FILM, Sugar City, 19 Wadsworth St, FREE.
The VIDEO VS FILM extravaganza will feature video installations and a screening comprised of individual and collaborative works by students from the Department of Media Study at the University at Buffalo. This exhibition is made possible through the generous support of the Department of Media Study, UB and Sugar City.
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