Friday, November 3, 2017

Recording: Phèdre

Artist: Phèdre

Songs: WTF?! [feat. Above Top Secret] + unknown* [feat. HanHan and Alanna Stuart]

Recorded at Artscape Daniels Spectrum (Venus Fest), September 30, 2017.

Phèdre feat. Above Top Secret - WTF?!

Phèdre feat. HanHan and Alanna Stuart - unknown

The idea of a "feminist music festival" might bring to mind an earnest folkie gathering, maybe off in a forest somewhere, but this first annual event was nothing like that, using inclusive and intersectional ideals as guideposts to programming a day of wide-ranging musics. The brainchild of local musician Aerin Fogel, Venus Fest was an ambitious undertaking, presenting a dozen performances in Daniels Spectrum's spacious multi-purpose Regent Park digs. And it all came together quite wonderfully, highlighting a diverse slate of mostly local musicians and incorporating flourishes like Vanessa Rieger's live-mixed visuals. With this first festival completed, there's a new "sessions" series starting up, and lots of energy to build on the positive vibes this day released.

With their DIY projection art, reflective foil backdrops and penchant for posse cuts, April Aliermo and Dan Lee have been pushing Phèdre in the direction of "spectacle" for a little while now, making them an ideal festival band. Perfectly placed at the day's fulcrum, they provided an energy boost for folks who had been there for a concert's worth of bands already and a jolt to those just walking in the door. They made this set a special occasion with a couple back-to-back all-star on-stage collaborations, first bringing up SunSun and Ayo Leilani (fresh from their own Witch Prophet set) to drop rhymes over a Lee Paradise (one of Lee's other noms du guerre) remix, and then upping the ante even more with HanHan and Bonjay's Alanna Stuart trading phrases back and forth.

* Does anyone know the title to this one? Please leave a comment!

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