Artist: David Jones
Recorded at Array Space (Wavelength 696: Don't Speak), March 25, 2016.David Jones - [excerpt]
An interesting, if not completely successful, experiment socially-engineered by WL's Adam Bradley, this performance came with a prohibition against verbal communication not only during but in between the evening's sets. While that's appreciated as a means of enjoying the music without interruption, it actually felt rather oppressive when the musicians weren't playing — and, truth be told, rather than trying to muck about with the supplied cards and pencils for written communication, I simply withdrew into the company of my phone and felt rather isolated in a way that I could be any time at home. Far more discomfiting was the decision to not offer chairs, leaving a room of people milling about on their feet while absorbing some slowly-unfurling ambient music. I guess from my perspective, the thing that threw me off the most about this gig is that I find myself hanging out at Array Space fairly often, and to me it's the sort of place where no top-down rules are required to enjoy music in comfort and silence — adding the formal gimmick was just too much inorganic chemistry.
That said, it was a good night, music-wise, leading off with a set from Manticore/Bile Sister's David Jones. Although his solo work often heads off into noisier realms, this hewed more to pleasing sinewave drones accompanied by his visual analog oscillations projected across the room. This section sounds like a lonely whale, singing the blues through unacknowledged sonar pings.