February 18th (friday) GRAHAM LAMBKIN / JASON LESCALLEET
Bowerbird Presents GATE
@ The Rotunda
4014 Walnut Street
ABOUT THE ARTISTS Graham Lambkin and Jason Lescalleet are both highly respected artists, with small but intensely hardcore followings. Their initial release, The Breadwinner, was released to widespread acclaim in early 2008, and 2 1/2 years later, the much-anticipated Air Supply, is finally ready to unleash upon the masses.
Lambkin first entered the public consciousness at 19 when he formed his band The Shadow Ring, in Folkestone, a small town in Kent, England. The band was memorable and built an rabidly passionate fan base because of its sui generis approach, blending elements of folk, noise, cracked electronics, and surrealist poetry, while radically changing the overall formula with each release. A decade of increasingly skewed and inspired work culminated in 2003's I'm Some Songs, constructed long distance as Lambkin had relocated to the US in 1998. Over the last few years, Lambkin has primarily worked under his own name, releasing two superb solo records (Salmon Run and Softly Softly Copy Copy), two hardcover books featuring his writing and drawings (Dumb Answer to Miracles and Dripping Junk), and has become more active with his own Kye label, releasing both his own work as well as documenting superb and lesser known artists like Moniek Darge and Vanessa Rossetto. This is his second release for Erstwhile, following The Breadwinner.
Lescalleet has gradually and painstakingly built a compelling discography over the past decade. He uses reel-to-reel tape decks to explore the textures of low fidelity analog sounds and the natural phenomena of old tape and obsolete technology. He is one of a growing list of master producer/musicians, whose skill lies as much in reworking, assembling and mastering the material available as in creating it (or helping create it) in the first place. Lescalleet has always been a fantastic live performer, but recently seems to have taken it to a new level, wowing and stunning crowds in NYC, Detroit, Chicago and Boston in various combinations over the course of 2010. This is his third release for Erstwhile, after 2001's Forlorn Green (w/Greg Kelley) and The Breadwinner, and the next two are already in preparation, a duo with Bhob Rainey and a solo disc for the ErstSolo series.
The material for Air Supply was mostly recorded in and around Lescalleet's house in Maine in early 2010. The duo wanted to make a leap away from the territory they'd explored on The Breadwinner and the subsequent handful of live concerts, and the results both build on their earlier work and stand in sharp contrast. Air Supply showcases a wide range of material and styles, but the malevolent undercurrents remain present throughout, creating a paradoxically luxuriant yet stifling atmosphere and setting up a soundworld that feels essential for one's ongoing survival. The gorgeous drawings throughout the package are by Lambkin.
Weyes Blood is Natalie Mering, one-time member of Jackie-O Motherfucker and collaborator with Karl Bauer's Axolotl, and Nautical Almanac. Playing songs of deep melancholy on organ and guitar, Mering's music stems from an archetypal principle or return to the structure of song, but only in the most elementary sense. Her music has an alliance with the ancient song but blasts it through the sonic elements of ampliphied sound, woven with tape loops and feedbacks, using sound as instrumentation. She brings to mind such female
songstresses as Nico and Buffy Saint Marie. http://www.myspace.com/nataliewiseblood/
The Rotunda is a West Philadelphia community-gathering place that is fueled by the belief that art is a catalyst for social change and that the arts can lead to the formation of meaningful partnerships between the University of Pennsylvania and surrounding neighborhoods. Over 300 events are offered every year, including live music, film, spoken word, theater, art, dance, education, youth programs, arts incubation, and various experimental genres. As an alcohol-free, smoke-free venue, The Rotunda provides a critical social alternative for all ages. At its core, The Rotunda is a shared space fostering learning, enrichment, and community support while empowering the public to present, produce, and promote their work.