Graham Stephenson & Aaron Zarzutzki, Quicksails | Constellation | Experimental | Chicago Reader

Graham Stephenson & Aaron Zarzutzki, Quicksails Recommended Soundboard Image

When: Sun., May 19, 8:30 p.m. 2013

The fourth concert in the Frequency series booked by Reader writer Peter Margasak features two local acts that employ electronic instruments in drastically dissimilar ways. Touching (ErstAEU) is not only the debut CD by Graham Stephenson and Aaron Zarzutzki, it also documents the first time they played together as a duo. While the former plays trumpet and the latter synthesizer, what defines the record’s sound is a third instrument they both play: microphones. By sucking tiny sounds from deep inside Stephenson’s horn or capturing the movement of detritus across the duo’s work surface, their microphones turn an aggregation of minuscule nonevents into savage splatters of sound hurled against a vast canvas of silence.

Quicksails is the solo project of Ben Billington, who drums for jazz punks Tiger Hatchery, psych-prog trio Moonrises, and fingerstyle guitarist Ryley Walker. On Mayville Dream (Spectrum Spools) he composes analog synth melodies so squelchy that you might as well put them in a juicer, then layers them over programmed pulses or crisp live percussion. If John Carpenter were to outsource his next soundtrack, Billington could step in—he has Carpenter’s old moves down pat, and this stuff would sound great in movies. —Bill Meyer Graham Stephenson & Aaron Zarzutzki headline; Quicksails opens.

Price: $10, $8 in advance

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