Tiny Waves and Civic Minded 5 present
Sun Araw Band, D/P/I, Moon Jelly and Kris Gruda
Friday, April 4th, 2014
1042 N. Mills Avenue, Orlando
9:00 pm, Tickets $8 advanced at Park Avenue CDs/$10 day of show
ages 18 and up admission
We’re admirers of our own work. We’re not putting on events to make the nut each month. We at the cm5 social club are mercenaries for our beliefs. A year ago we attempted and succeeded in weaving disparate Florida music audiences by presenting the UCF Percussion Ensemble performing Iannis Xenakis’ Persephassa with New York’s genre-confusers Zs. Most of the Xenakis canon is about half of a “one-thousand, one” count away from contemporary avant-garde music. And the ever-evolving music of Z’s is always about a “one-Kevin Bacon, two-Kevin Bacon” stretch to get from modern classical music to renegade hip hop producers via a thrash metal trance.
So, friends- if Fletch killed ’em in the movie house (well, at the suburban video store), the autonomic nervous system of Hollywood makes Fletch Lives to great effect, right?
UCF’s Thad Anderson mentioned a program of the late Toru Takemitsu to us and we were ready to pump the foot pedals on our pan-aesthetic sound loom once more. So, first swing, teaming up with UCF’s Anderson and presenter Tiny Waves again: Takemitsu ➜ Sun Araw? Sun Araw’s Cameron Stallones mentions Toru Takemitsu as a hero in the first email response. We have two nights of concerts with Sun Araw, with composer Takemitsu acting as a terminus.
SUN ARAW BAND
Our two Sun Araw events are not part of a traditional tour. It’s an artisanal sonic pairing that has expanded into a weekend in Florida. So, like Zs were our two-day residency/ genre-spanners last year, Cameron Stallones and Alex Gray of Sun Araw Band are the bridge. But, conjure a pontoon bridge with a phlegmatic pitch, yaw and roll in the water, all the while never quite touching any specific shoreline.
Cameron Stallone’s Sun Araw is described as an extension or off-shoot of his days in The Magic Lantern. That group’s American Primitive Guitarists go Electric Koolaid seemingly paved the way for the first Sun Araw releases of 2008 and 2009- The Phynx, Beach Head and Heavy Deeds. Those records were Phase One- crusty, single-celled, cistern psychedelia based on- as recently argued in a Tiny Mix Tapes review– gauzy ethnographic environs and arcane music theory.
Jamaican overtures came next. Sun Araw’s 2010 Sun Ark offering references a slovenly, mystic-adjacent iteration on the oddest of Lee “Scratch” Perry’s later Black Ark studio work. On Patrol from the same year continues the Kingston, JA psych parade and adds just enough melody-like snatches of a moldy VHS recording of an MTV 120 Minutes broadcast- to imply a connection to indie rock. When L.A. scene mate M. Geddes Gengres joined Stallones in The Congos’ Kingston compound and managed to meld their cloaked, avant-garde pageantry to one of the most hallowed and spooky of Rastafarian music adherents, Sun Araw moved from implied to bona fide via their Meet The Congos CD and travelogue DVD.
February 2014’s Belomancie is another in the Sun Araw temporal encampment zones. This one sounds like Stallones has moved in-land/out of the Caribbean cavern to drier heat and more well-defined timbral territories. Yellow Magic Orchestra’s 1981 Technodelic album and the 1990’s Finnish hyper-literal tethering of Detroit Techno’s self-mythologizing sci fi come to mind when listening to this one. We’ll see Sun Araw Band 2104 with Stallones joined by Alex Gray- aka D/P/I, DJ Purple Image and Deep Magic.
Alex Gray’s 2011 and 2012 releases under the nom de plume Deep Magic wrangle the Golden Age Of New Age Music much in the way that Werner Herzog’s Fata Morgana draws and quarters vintage, big screen nature documentaries at the pace of a Tai Chi routine. In the preceding year, the New Age(ntry) has giving way to recording as D/P/I. Three D/P/I releases between 2013 and 2014 have read like a linear, digital road trip past sun-warped 1960’s country music vinyl, voyeuristic found sound dialogue cut-ups and deep house trax heard while motoring past a picket fence. Check out two Boiler Room videocast sets from D/P/I here and here. A re-contextualizing of Drake is below.
Ok, let’s take a stab at this already: Moon Jelly create electronic/electrical/acoustic (electro⨧/acoustic?) light opera phantasms with notes of classic 1980’s 4AD Records ethereal drift. Or what if Spiritualized and Rotary Connection were the bordering ingredients in Reese’s famous snack cup?
The Orlando band are known for creating multi-media affairs replete with video projections, costuming and interlacing Yip-Yip co-founder Brian Esser’s substantial electronic puzzles within their live band dynamic. Moon Jelly’s self-titled début appeared in 2013 with an East Coast tour quickly following. After months away from the stage, look for their Will’s Pub set as a moderate reset with now-New York resident Esser in a remote operators’ role.
The cm5 executive committee can show favorites once in a while. The Orlando guitarist’s work is that of a studied absurdist with gravitas- which goes a long way with us. Gruda’s background in improvised, near-mainstream rock can be hinted at or recalled at times- tone, sustain, octave bends, volume, etc. An electric guitarist’s path into out-jazz, free improvisation, extended techniques and contemporary classical composition isn’t a particularly unique when measured against your Chadbournes and Ribots, either. What is notable and always worthy of auditioning is Gruda’s musicality and ever-expanding language, lack of ego while projecting his craft with quiet confidence, straight-faced hijinks and never pulling a punch when it could and should crack an intended skull. Kris Gruda will act as sort of a non-verbal MC, making interstitial appearances as a soloist as the curtain opens and closes throughout the evening.
Coda: Will’s Pub is now a non-smoking venue. Dollar, dollar bill, y’all.