GIFT/DRAFT’s second 2017 performance, March 18

Gift Tapes logo Gift Tapes / DRAFTpresents:
Matt Carlson, Jeff Witscher, Jason E Anderson

Matt Carlson. Photo: Valerie Calano

Our second show of 2017 could prove to be one of this series’ least ‘accessible’ presentations, but that didn’t seem to deter people; there were many new faces and really large turnout!  I was extremely happy about this, as the quad setup and video projection made this one of my more complex setups at the Chapel.

Jason E Anderson. Video: Emily Pothast

After announcing the performance, I began my set (Jason E Anderson), mostly hidden behind a ridiculous amount of hardware hear, which was driven by a computer running Supercollider programmed to generate control voltages to automate a modular synth and send MIDI notes to Roland MKS-70 (which is the Twin Peaks synth in a box).  I won’t speak to how this was received, but it wasn’t as much of a train wreck as I thought it’d be!

Jeff Witscher’s performance probably hit the hardest, pushing the volume to the limits of what the space will allow.  His set contained both 100% synthetic tones and enhanced field recordings/foley sounds edging towards the artificial, played back via computer. What struck me the most was his use of space–dynamic gestures made of noisy textures and clean tones, but punctuated with varying moments of silence.  His accompanying video was very much coming out of Witscher’s visual repertoire: a sort of autobiographical view into his world through a collage of symbols captured to video from a phone… an odd blend of comedic and beautiful.

Matt Carlson. Video: Emily Pothast

Matt Carlson’s performance was a bewildering assault of a seemingly unlimited set of modular synth patches, punctuated by word fragments and presented in 4-channel quad surround sound.  This was synthetic maximalism taken to the next level.  Carlson performed his piece using a mic and a sampling keyboard setup (NI Kontakt, computer, midi keyboard), mapping each key to a massive array of custom modular synth patches and voice recordings.  Each of these sounds were then assigned to different locations throughout the speaker array.  Sounds glided and jumped from one place to the next, occasionally colliding in such a way that sentences seemed to form around you. It was impressive to listen to such large assortment of sounds and witness how they could form a specific logic together.

A special shoutout to: James Watkins for again running video and lights, to Robert (RM) Francis for managing the door and merch, to Steve Peters/Wayward Music Series for making the show possible, and to audience for pitching in on the cleanup!

OPS in Italian Vogue

Oregon Painting Society

During the group’s visit to the Tate last May for the No Soul for Sale exhibition, Portland-based art collective Oregon Painting Society participated in some interviews and photo shoots – one of which is posted here: http://www.vogue.it/en/magazine/l-uomo-vogue/2010/12/oregon-painting-society

Oregon Painting Society has a ton of content on their site, from photo documentation to audio downloads to video links – check it out.  You can even download their Gift Tapes cassette, released last June.

Buffle’s Cavernicole C10 tape

Buffle Cavernicole Tape

Short and sweet, Buffle leads the listener into an odd, multicolored world where things happen in reverse.  This is strange music that moves like a lone opossum in search of her lunch… and maybe that lunch will consist of green-glow earthworms?  Here, the trio recreates the consciousness of a malformed creature operating on a pile of ancient mechanical devices.  Guitars, tape manipulations, miscellaneous percussion and toy-sized electronics bounce along in a quirky happy-time fantasy-world.  These semi-randomized improvisations sputter and pluck about, occasionally landing in a miniature forward moving jam – but only momentarily.  Packaged in a clear front/blue back case with a single sided cover and a crazy-cool sticker –  this is a great tape to add to your Belgian weird/positive music collection.

Italian tape label Relax Produzioni is responsible for releasing this tape by the Brussels-based band in 2008.  Find out more info about Buffle here: http://www.myspace.com/buffle AND http://buffle.tk/

And to get a taste of what this music sounds like – take a look at this youtube video (I think this track is on the tape): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KrzC1gFjW5E

The Raag…

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rcSZE-4q_yA&eurl=http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=ravi+shankar+sitar&www_google_domain=www.google.com&emb=0&aq=0&oqiurl=http://i3.ytimg.com/vi/rcSZE-4q_yA/hqdefault.jpg

Loosing touch on Lark in the Morning’s site where I found that video. I’ve really grown to love the sound of the sitar. And that reminds this dude:
David Parsons in 1977
David Parsons.  Former ad exec turned new age after seeing Ravi Shankar perform. He quits his job, goes to India, studies sitar, then buys a synth. Bouncing tracks back and forth on a tape machine, he came up with Sounds of the Mothership. Thanks Jeff! Actually, you should check out his blog: Avant Ghetto – it’s still there, dubbed from cassette.