Monday, May 23, 2011

Four Concerts. Four Days. Day One.

The Joinery: Barn Owl and friends

Join me as I embark on a musical journey, one that takes me to see four concerts in four days. First up we have me paying a trip out to Stoneybatter to catch a concert in The Joinery. This is an odd place. Imagine if more or less in the middle of a quiet suburban street there was a former workshop that had been converted into a venue for kewl avant-garde concerts. That is what we have with the Joinery, somewhere that has a distinct "Let's put on the concert right here!" vibe to it. They do not have an alcohol license, so if you fancy a drink you need to bring it yourself. Indeed, if you fancy anything you would probably not want to expect the Joinery to provide it. But no problem, they are conveniently located near to one of Dublin's best off licenses so any hardened alcoholic music lovers will not want for sustenance.

The other funny thing about the Joinery is its near complete lack of seating – if you fancy resting your tired little feet then you will have to sit on the floor. But the floor is bare concrete, meaning that you might well end up getting a little parky. Oh well, the things we do for art.

On the bill were three sets of musicians. Before they played we were treated to what sounded like someone DJing from Shoegaze Obscurities Vol. 7 while someone's home video was projected onto a wall. Then the first performer came on and did his thing with a laptop, which sounded oddly similar to the music being DJed. I am well known for my dislike of laptop music, but the set and setting worked well for this, creating a pleasantly avant-garde musical atmosphere.

Next up was a duo comprising some bloke (whose name may have been Jefre Cantu-Ledesma), formerly of a band fairly well known to some people, and a woman wearing a fetching hijab-like getup on her head. The man played on a heavily treated guitar while the woman vocalised into microphones that ran her voice through some kind of apparatus. I liked these two as well, but I thought maybe they could have done more with the voice, as it was not particularly noticeable in the finished product. This made for an unfavourable comparison with the time I saw Double Leopards, who for me are very much the acme of using strange treated voices to make weirdo music.

Last up we had Barn Owl. They are two blokes who play slow guitar and effects pedals. They might have used some vocals as well, but they were not one of those bands where you are primarily interested in the lyrics. The music reminded me a bit of (((Sunn-O))), perhaps because they are the most famous band who play slow guitar without any rhythm section. Anyway, I liked them enough to buy their album (partly pay-back for somehow managing to walk into the concert without being asked to buy a ticket).

A fun night was therefore had in the Joinery, though I might think of growing a beard for my next visit there, as they seemed kind of mandatory among male attendees.

image source

An inuit panda production

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