Monday, July 13, 2009

An Evening of Another World

I had the great opportunity Saturday night to go see some live music downtown. Thanks to Kris Tiner, who never fails to bring in great artists for his Metro Galleries series, and also never fails to deliver a stunning performance himself. Saturday night opened with Kris and Chris Schlarb, a guitarist from Long Beach, playing some absolutely mesmerizing reflective music with Trumpet + Electronics/Guitar + Effects. After buying one of Chris' albums Interocean by his group I Heart Lung (featuring Kris Tiner as well as many others) and listening to samples of his Twilight I was hooked. It is really beautiful and introspective music and really allows the listener to be sucked into its timelessness. He has also done some beautiful music for a new video game called Night Game coming out on the Wii this fall. You can check out some video of the game and Chris' music here.

Second set was done by returning artists Jeff Kaiser and Stuart Leibig. Jeff on Trumpet + Electronics and Stuart on Contrabass Guitar + Effects. It was a very interesting set and was a very natural flip side of the first set. This set had much more bite to it and an intensity of sound that just can't be rivaled. Jeff really seems to have a control over his gear and how far he can push it that is quite amazing. Stuart had such a command of what he was doing with a sea of floor pedals and effects boxes etc... that it was amazing just to watch him work his feet and occasionally hands, all over the many buttons and knobs and dials to make some really interesting foundations and even grooves for Jeff to work off of up top. It really was a night of contrasts.

I don't really listen to much electronic media and it is always a treat to hear it live and watch the musicians manipulate their equipment. I think that is something that is a little lost when listening to this kind of music on CD. And occasionally the musicianship gets covered up with the novelty of gadgets and buttons. It is a fine line, that not many are willing to tread. Kris has a really interesting approach to it that I think more people should take into consideration when venturing into the electronically manipulated sound world.

Keep bringing in those artists Kris! Thanks!

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