Friday, December 9, 2011

ATM + Yvette at Death By Audio

Went to check out both of these guys at DBA last night, Ted from ATM had sent me his latest cassette and I had been listening to it for past few days, so when I noticed he was on a bill with Yvette I had to go catch both of these guys at my favorite venue...that refuses to change, the last holdout, surrounded by vespa's and condo's.
ATM set up a semicircle on the floor with tiers of effects, and tom drums, from the shows I remember with him drumming for These are Powers, the heavy submissive beat is key, and the hit of a real booming tom is the cornerstone to being beat-notized. The effects come on heavy and thick, a repetitive echo-y sludge bounces around the concrete walls and Ted put on his sunglasses for Suicide effect. He's got the same kind of mechanical menace, combined with primitive rhythms pounded out occasionally on the cluster of raised drums beside him. It's a frightening version of Dirty Beaches, take away that twisted attempt at soul, the classy yesteryear vibe, or Handsome Furs neo-springsteen pop, you have this utilitarian unglamorous future. Like Mattress opening for the Liars, Ted's got an impressive master plan and is singlehandedly pulling it off.

Yvette set up in the same way, right there on the floor in front of the stage, facing each other with cases of pedals at their feet. You don't realize from the single the elaborate footwork required to create the dense layer of electronics that come out that guitar amp and the amount of control Noah has over that blinking mess...bursts of ringtoned chords, swapping between a high pitch bell feedback and a sweeping crunch. Rick is pounding away in precise polyrhythms, from hitting the metal edge of the toms to some kind of trigger attached to the top of the drum head. Just when you thought this overwhelming rhythm can't possibly get bigger, all kinds of alien rumblings come in on every hit. They are wizards at incorporating these kinds of technical possibilites without it ever being a crutch of complication, losing momentum live. They're capable of crafting an impressive collection of sound that doesn't even seem like it's possibly happening with guitar and drums, even though I'm standing two feet away. It's being done on an incredibly high level of established groups and you're lucky to catch them at a small venue like this, not that it's going to help you figure out what exactly is making these sounds. Go pick up their great single and then get creeped/chilled out with ATM.

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