A few days ago, DC experimental pop band Luna Honey released a video for a new single, “Psalm,” and it sounds like the droning theme to the ambient post-apocalyptic space Western that we would like to see.
The droning guitars and eerie pipes of the Irish folk band Lankum have led some to describe their music as apocalyptic. On the evening before the declaration of the coronavirus pandemic as a US national emergency, the band darkly joked, “Thanks a million for taking your lives into your own hands.”
Frontman Ian Lynch added, “We kind of feel like the band on The Titanic.”
DC drone quartet Luna Honey released the band’s debut album, Peace Will Grind You Down, last year via Blight Records. They’ve been performing around town quite a bit since then, and their next show is at the Dew Drop Inn on Monday, Feb. 25.
Electronic duo Boy Harsher performed at DC9 on Sunday on the heels of releasing Country Girl, their latest EP, on Oct. 13 via Ascetic House. Augustus Miller and Jae Matthews played some of their latest dark electronic music in a very satisfying show on a brief US tour that takes them to Kingston, New York, tonight.
Hailing from Northampton, Massachusetts, dark electronic duo Boy Harsher released Country Girl, a new EP, on Oct. 13. Augustus Miller and Jae Matthews then picked up some tour dates, and they perform at DC9 on Sunday, Oct. 29 with DC’s own dark electronic duo Technophobia.
Los Angeles guitarist Sarah Lipstate, better known as Noveller, visited DC’s Rock and Roll Hotel to open for Mary Timony touring the songs of her former band Helium on June 6. (Read our Parklife DC review of Mary Timony!) During the sold-out show, Noveller deftly looped guitar loops through an impressive array of pedals, producing a languid noise rock that proved a great counterpart to Helium’s music.
Seattle drone metal band Sunn O))) is launching a tour at the 9:30 Club on Sunday, March 12, and you have an opportunity here to win tickets to see Stephen O’Malley and Greg Anderson bring their very loud live show to DC.
Angus Tarnawsky is a drummer, but in performance he’s not a traditional percussionist.
The Australian-born New Yorker takes to the stage with an electronic dashboard, bursting with knobs and wires, as well as a deconstructed drum set — cymbals to his left and a drumhead to his right. As he moves his way from song to song, Angus creates deliberate, focused sound on his drum set, samples it, and then loops it into an electronic selection that can dissolve into ambience or hopscotch into tribal rhythms.
Performing as the opener for UK quartet Savages at the 9:30 Club on Sunday night, Angus held the attention of a very full room. The gathering crowd waited politely when the lights dimmed to signal the beginning of his set, not fully knowing what to expect. But soon, concert-goers were pleased to travel along Angus’ experimental sonic landscapes. Angus was a perfect opener for Savages, who handpicked him as the first act for the first three weeks of their US tour, which began Sunday night. (He’ll jump off the bill during the time the band perform at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in mid-April.)
The opening track, “Loam,” on the latest full-length album from Blanck Mass begins as a confused muffle of sounds that resembles someone speaking underwater. The song then mellows out midway and becomes the sonic equivalent of a soft strobe light, electronic beats skipping gently toward a languid conclusion.
Blanck Mass, born Benjamin John Power, performed “Loam” also as an opener for his show at DC9 on Tuesday night as a stop on his tour to support the album and an ensuing EP, the Great Confuso, both released last year. He drew a dedicated crowd excited to dance to Blanck Mass’ very accessible cut on music that occasionally borders both neo-psychedelia and dark ambient pop.
Loam means soil, and it’s clear that Blanck Mass envisions this to mean “clay” as in material for sculpting a human form. The album, Dumb Flesh, thematically explores how human beings are victims of their biology, responsive to the biological stimuli of all mammals despite our intellectual yearning to strive for something more.