14-Jan-2005 (Fri)
Wherein... hey what's that smell?

Photos of the Collide / Drop Black Sky show show are up now. I've been listening to Collide for a long time, and it was a good show, but the sound quality wasn't great. Collide wanted to use their sound guy instead of ours, and that's just never a good idea, since our sound crew are really good and know the room very well. I imagine that's not the case at a lot of venues, so it's hard to convince bands of this. Anyway, I gather that this is the first time Collide has ever toured, having been a studio-only band for a decade or so, and I was glad that they put together a full band instead of relying on laptops. One of the guys in the band played a very odd-looking kind of guitar that I hadn't seen before. The singer was wearing a dress made of razor blades. I was disappointed that no blood-squibs fired during the encore.

This was the third time Drop Black Sky has played here. They're good! They don't have an album out yet, but there are a bunch of MP3s on their web site.

Also up are photos of the Flying Tiger Circus. This was their third time here as well, and they were great as always. Acrobats and contortionists and jugglers, oh my. I'm sorry to say that I got here late, though, so I missed the first half of the show -- so if any of you have photos of the earlier acts, please send them to me!

(I also missed the human branding part of the show, including the smell, but that's ok, because I had pork for dinner.)

I was surprised to learn that I am no longer squicked out by the bait-and-tackle show. This time, it didn't really bother me at all watching a guy dangle by meat-hooks in his back. What did get me, though, was after they took the hooks out and were squeezing the air bubbles out from under his skin. That still makes me feel all funny inside.

The mechanism for the suspension was pretty clever: the guy was hanging by a cable that connected to some sand-bags on a table. The audience threw baseballs at targets to make the sandbags drop down, which eventually hoisted Mr. Meathook.

Here's a funny story: one of the acts was the Mystic Pixies, a group of kid contortionists. So Paul, the promoter, took some of the flyers down to their circus school. Their teacher looked at the flyer and said, "I don't think that's appropriate at all!" Paul assumed she was talking about the meat-hook picture, and said something like, "well, we've been doing that for a long time, I think everyone's used to it by now..." But no, she was objecting to the picture of the girls on the other side. She said, "that's a picture of little girls having an orgy!" So he found some polite way to say, "you're insane!"

So then the girls themselves told her that they didn't see anything wrong with it either... and because of that, they got booted out of the Children's Circus!

How about that.

21 Responses:

  1. mikesch says:

    The guitar you mentioned appears to be a Warr guitar. Trey Gunn from King Crimson uses them pretty extensively.

    • pvck says:

      Holy crap that's a lot of string.

      And... why in the world would you need stereo outputs on a guitar pickup?

      • king_mob says:

        On the Warr guitars and Chapman Sticks (a Warr guitar is very much the same idea as a Chapman Stick), you can run the bass stings to one amp, the treble strings to another. Say you want clean bass sounds, and distorted leads...

        • pvck says:

          Okay, now that makes more sense. I interpreted "stereo" to mean "left and right" rather than "frequency split".

          • king_mob says:

            There are guitars that have stereo out in the "left-right" sense, though; old Gibson ES-335s. Since I'm not likely to spend $4000 on a guitar soon (dammit), I haven't spent a lot of time familiarizing myself with what they do.

            • Ric-o-sound, too, although it's not left/right, it's a pickup-based frequency split type thing. I've never used it on my 360, nor does anyone else apparently.

              m.

    • rasp_utin says:

      I totally missed that guitar when I first flipped through the pics... the thing that caught my eye was the tiny bass. Some poking around revealed it to be a De Armond Ashbory Bass, I think. Both are neat. :)

  2. pvck says:

    I run sound at a medium-sized bar here, and, from what bands say to me, I have the impression that Most Every House Sound Guy Except Me sucks. They're astounded sometimes nearly to the point of tears when I do things like adjust their monitor levels for them in the middle of the set. This is not to say that your house guys suck (on the contrary, actually, touring bands generally have very good things to say about the sound at DNA, so you know), but I'm not surprised that any given band wants to bring their own sound tech. No one seems to remember that what the house and the system can (and won't)do are as important, if not moreso, than what the band wants to sound like.

  3. bifrosty2k says:

    What, Nothing about Lift - The Horkening?

  4. revglenn says:

    the problem is that every club owner says that their sound guy and sound system are great. as far as sound guys go.... the dna is the only place i've ever played that has lived up to that. a lot of people i know who have played there agree. so, unfortunately it's no wonder they don't listen, because it actually is a good idea just about everywhere else.

    • jwz says:

      I believe it, but I'm still kind of surprised. I mean, let's say you're a sound guy, and you're always working in the same room. After, say, one or two hundred bands, how could you manage to not become at least moderately good at it eventually?

      • cwillu says:

        In the same vein as "10 years experience" != "experienced one year 10 times". To say nothing of the "I hate music, it always sounds like crap" factor.

      • boldra says:

        If your sound guy reads your blog, he's probably going to be asking for a raise soon.

  5. seanb says:

    I was at the Vogue show in Seattle this Friday, and they had massive sound problems. Feedback four or five times a song, and vocals consistently dorwned out by the drummer.

  6. Shit that meat hook shit is scary. I want my mommy.

  7. elysiumcore says:

    Dude!!
    Kicked-out of the childrens circus becuz some insane wench thought that pic was kiddie-porn, but the kids performed anyway?!!!??!?!!
    THAT is more whacked-out than my experience this past week of being assualted by a drag queen outside Trannyshack!

    WTF is this world coming to...

  8. 5tephe says:

    Not to piss in your pocket, but I always love your dnalounge updates. We don't have anything quite like your club here in Sydney.
    Fortunately my wife and I are planning to be in San Fran around mid July, so there is no way I am going to miss one night of debauched revelry while I'm in town.

    Great pics of the Circus, by the way. You take em'? Nice.