When: Fri., Nov. 16, 9 p.m. 2012
Container is the latest solo project of lo-fi electronic tinkerer Ren Schofield, who lives in Providence, Rhode Island; on his two albums for Spectrum Spools, he brings a homemade aesthetic to early-90s minimal techno. The recordings are in glorious mono, and each floor-rattling beat and throbbing bass tone connects like a clenched fist. There's no gloss, no melodic embellishment—only driving, relentless grooves splattered with weird lo-fi analog blurps and squiggles and mutant vocal chants. The second Container album (like the first, self-titled) is due November 28, and it raises the stakes, making every sound harder and more harrowing, at times evoking the implacable low-end numbness of D.A.F. (Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft).
Three Legged Race—aka Robert Beatty of Hair Police, who lives in Lexington, Kentucky—also specializes in homemade electronic sounds, using low-tech gear that's often hacked or repurposed to create woozy, spooky environmental recordings. After releasing loads of limited-edition tapes and CD-Rs as well as a couple of records, Beatty is finally issuing an album with relatively wide distribution: Persuasive Barrier (Spectrum Spools), made with his Radio Shack Moog knockoff, is his most melodic effort by a wide margin. His music remains wonderfully primitive, and much of Persuasive Barrier sticks close to his usual haunting abstraction, but for the title track he's put together an ersatz science-fiction score that could pass as a piece of UK library music from the 70s, even adding some muffled vocals. This show is part of the Neon Marshmallow festival. —Peter Margasak Container headlines; Julian Lynch, MV & EE, and Three Legged Race open.
Price: $10, $60 four-day Neon Marshmallow pass