Tuesday, February 10, 2009

It Never Gets Old It Just Gets Cleaner

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I'm not always good at hints or keeping promises, but as I mentioned about a month ago, last Saturday was gonna be my first chance at checking out Bedroom Rehab Corporation (after nine months of wanting), at the Hygienic Art festival in New London. A bunch of other bands played that night, too, including Brava Spectre, who pretty much played the best set any Ct. band's ever played and totally destroyed traditional rock n roll for me forever, or for the rest of the weekend at least.

Hygienic Art is an outsider art festival that began thirty years ago, at the Hygienic Restaurant in New London, CT (hence the name). Hygienic Art is modeled after a pre-Impressionist art protest from the 1800's, when a bunch of crazy French fuckers went nuts, foregoing galleries and going direct to the public by hanging their stuff in various cafes around Paris. The Hygienic Art festival includes poetry, music, film, and theater, all spread out over a two-week period, and the show that I went to on Saturday night was just one of about 20 different events. I don't really know all of this by heart, I just read it in the booklet.


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Anyway, so Bedroom Rehab Corporation were the deal, and while they didn't exactly blow the roof off the place (Meghan was fighting a flu or something), they were still pretty awesome. Meghan's a great drummer, Adam makes cool Godzilla noises on his bass, and while I was watching them I was thinking that Bedroom Rehab sound almost like a guitarless version of Murdervan, if that helps you at all. The five or six older songs that they played were good, but the one new song killed all of them, and their Black Sabbath cover ("Paranoid", I think it was, though just about of 'em will do)... needs more practice. No doubt about it, though, Bedroom Rehab are BAD ASS, and I'll keep saying that until someone makes it into a t-shirt or something.

Brava Spectre's show-ending set practically crushed the known universe; every so often they'd drop it down to do their semi-beatnik thing with the acapella chants and stuff (which is pretty cool), but other than that, they were noise-metal bebop, total fucking Void/"Get It Away" at 120rpm, or Thin Lizzy/Deep Purple at mutilation speed, depending upon which channel you were watching. No one in the room dares to look away even for a little bit while Brava Spectre are playing. It's like one of those video clips of huge trains that keep crashing into things - destroyed in seconds!! How Brava Spectre are able to be so physically reckless while they're playing and still keep it tight is something I haven't figured out yet, although I think it's their drummer. At one point I was watching his kick pedal foot moving faster than I can even drum roll, and this was while his hands were doing something completely different. Dude's a monster.

You can download Brava Spectre's newest EP for free at their MySpace page (myspace.com/bravaspectre), although the version of "Lioness Eye" that I've posted below is an earlier one that I've posted before (I'm giving everyone a second chance). Also, the Bedroom Rehab song is a demo that I swiped from their MySpace, so hopefully they won't mind their unfinished goods being passed around.


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Chasing Trinity went on right before Brava Spectre, and were pretty good. I'd never seen them before, but they were almost exactly what I expected based on their split CD with Hand Grenade Serenade... meaning they not only brought the rock but they were funny as well, but in a cool, flippant, punk kind of way instead of a pseudo-ironic Dan Barry will love us, he's from the Advocate kind of way.

Cosmodemonic Telegraph had a merch table set up, and so for a while I was able to bullshit with Rich Martin about his old band, Grand Passion (one of the best Ct. bands ever), until I got too annoying and Rich would start moving in the other direction whenever he'd see me walking towards him. Cosmodemonic have just now released their '09 set of "cosmosingles"-- 16 bands from the label, 16 CDs, two songs each-- which are so new that they weren't even posted on their web site yet (hozomeen.org) the last time I checked. A mere two sets had been banded together as complete sets, so I grabbed one of them, which makes me friggin' special I guess. If I find any especially awesome ones once I crack the pack open (like a T206 Honus Wagner, that'd be nice), I'll let you know about it.


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Here's the other songs I was talking about. Three songs, and only one with words - what a bunch of suck. I mean, seriously.


Bedroom Rehab Corporation -

"Duel Bridges" (instrumental version)

Chasing Trinity -

"Laundromat"

Brava Spectre -

"The Lioness Eye Tamed My Open Palm"

(these files are now listen-only)



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9 comments:

Brian Suicide said...

yeah it's the drummer Steven. He's constantly holding it down and giving superstructure to what appears to not have any structure at all. He cuts through and holds things down. He also appears to have great physical communication skills with head movements and looking the other players in the eyes to give them signals as to what they need to be doing and where they are going next. The players are allowed to jump around and go crazy because at any moment they can focus back to the drums and the drummer to get back in line again. without Steven acting as a sort of team leader there's a good chance team chaos would be lost. I'm sure Brava will tell me I have my head up my ass, but I don't. Atlest not on how they delivered their ideas in a live gig freakout format.

great review and don't worry, Rich can get pretty obnoxious too as he almost bite my nipple off last night :)

Brian Suicide

Brushback said...

I think you're right about the physical communication thing; now that you've mentioned it, I remember seeing the drummer looking at the rest of the guys during the transition parts, making sure that everyone comes back to the same spot.

Brian Suicide said...

yeah and there was alot of knods of "yes" and "non" and "wait for it" and eye movements of "yes I'm looking at you" you'll notice the band not only runs about the place, but on a deeper level circle the drummer. With our group we'll do improve noise into the pop/rock set up to sort of cause a tear down what we've built type deal and we all know to all come back to one player to get things back. Everytime we try the "hey let's all just feel for it" it all falls apart. the smoke and mirros of live chaos is that there's alot of order, sort of like punks idea of rebel is buying in, right? :) but really I noticed alot of the band turning to the drummer, not to mention as crazy as the drum parts were, they were really solid patterns, strong and clear to, damn near like scenes in a movie for the rest of the band to act from. I remember when they were just a two piece, the drummer and the guitarist/singer. They've done a great job creating their brava ID to stand up with many modern noise acts like aidswolf. I was explaing to them to not dig too deep into becoming local heroes and during the summer go out and tour, take their CT noise on the road. I explained it's better to be a roadband than a "scene" band, you know? I'd like to see how say Indianapolis or Detroit would react to Brava now that CT has obviously given them the full stamp of approval. Though sadly sooner or later the world is going to try and challenge their "fuck the stage play on the floor" routine, but then again, maybe it won't. yeah...ramble. It's just funny because in the late 90's The Dolls were a straight noise band that just played non-stop 45 minute set to this sort of music before we lost our balls and start verse chorus so "we can finally get booked" It should be fun watching how Brava evolves and what direction they decide to go.

Brushback said...

What you're saying makes a lot of sense, especially the "circling the drummer" part. I guess it takes another frontman to be able to break it down like this (I don't usually think of music in those terms - not being much of a musician myself, I tend to be a bit more visceral).

I'd like to see Brava Spectre "break out" of New London, also- actually, there seem to be parts of Connecticut that are still not convinced, either, although the wall that's always existed between New London and the other scenes (New Haven, Danbury, etc) is something that I haven't figured out yet. Maybe it's just a travel issue, but definitely also, New London bands don't sound like any of the other bands from around the state.

Brian Suicide said...

for the last few years we've work on a rep of not only being a band that mixes hard rock, punk, punk, pop and noise, but also a band that scratches holes through said walls. we tour alot and find bands from out of state to bring to CT and in return help CT bands play those states. we also have over the last few years played a good amount of CT spots like New Haven, Hartford, Danbury, New London, Groton, Manchester. What we do is try to play with bands that match our style, sound, and genre 100%, you know, mix it and have polarities. What we're tried to do is, book bands out of different CT scenes to make them more fimilar in our backyard. Take New Haven. Last year we played there like times. We brought to New London New Haven's The Vultures, Tyler Trudeau, Murdervan, Smooth Medusa, The Black Noise Scam, and a bunch others to try and make them feel welcome in New London and hopefully mix with New London. Now I say scratch through the walls as by no means is the wall broken. But I feel it's started atlest to help open communications so scenes can work together though the sounds and faces aren't fimilar. Lots of other bands and bookers have been starting to work at this too.

Though I agree lots of CT is broken down into town/city scenes and sounds etc New London sounds like this new haven like that and Danbury is not like either. I try not to look at things that way, but have had a dozen conversations in each areas backyard and the sense of being seperate is strong. I guess I just follow a foolish idea of we're working towards a CT scene all in this together as opposed to "your backyard my backyard"

I think this because we've played lots of roadhsows and tours now that not only do we rep New London we rep CT so when we talk about home we explain both NL and CT.

though I agree there are alot of walls to be broken down for a state that's not that big in size. New London is as guilty as the rest of state and may be as much to blame as why they don't get enough credit. The funny thing this goes on with RI CT and Mass trying to work together.

I know and work with alot of Boston and NYC bands who have enough of Boston and NYC and want to play CT as it lies right in the middle of the path, but find it hard because of all the scene walls that have been built and communication that has been lost. If New London, New Haven, Danbury, Hartford aren't talking and mixing scene sounds, it makes it harder for outside forces to peak in because there's an illusion that nothing going on. I try to tell bands outside the state the opposite is going on...THERE'S ALOT GOING ON IN CT!! It's just very well guarded and protected because of scene mentality, you know?

Brushback said...

Brian, I think we've set a record for the most commenting on a local show review post.... hooray

I've seen a few times when there's bands from different parts of CT on the same bill, and people hang around outside when the band from their town isn't playing, or go home right afterwards. I understand not liking certain bands for specific reasons, especially when you've paid your own way into a show, but people not giving a chance to any bands that they're not "friends" with is how a lot of these walls are getting built.

By the way, Brian, I just figured out this week that you're my favorite Ct. guitar player, just so you don't think I'm ignoring you. I don't always dig what the whole band is up to, but...

Syd from Wonderlust is probably second on the list.

Brian Suicide said...

wonderlust's a great band and friends. great blog by the way, lots of reading for me still to check up on. great point about grady's. I like playing there but when I do I can't tell if I'm playing guitar or serving drinks.

Brushback said...

The new Bedroom Rehab song that I mentioned is called "Dinosaur Brain" and it's up on their MySpace now... so friggin' good

myspace.com/bedroomrehabcorporation

Brushback said...

The mp3 files on this post are now listen-only (non-downloadable) files.