Sunday, September 25, 2005

the apthur delay pedal

The echo created by our new stompbox is one everyone will disagree on. Your listeners will be amazed at how differently they hear your guitar than their friend next to them. Was it awesome, or deep? Easily alienate entire nations of youth with the twist of the perception knob. Go from 'Library Shy' to full blown 'Anomie'. Astound your contemporaries by crashing cultural movements, defeating them with the gracility of a gerenuk ascending a slope. Create empirically provable autism in every audience with such finesse you'll wonder just what is - rock and roll!

We arrived at twelve, then it was one, lunch. We ate pizza, it was terrible. It tasted like the owner of the shop had gotten the pizza from last week's left over lunch from some local school cafeteria and had been keeping it warm just for us. But we could sympathize with the pizza and that's why liked it, because it was like eating our childhood.

It was a drive, but there was the sign, what we all came to see.

We crossed the street at one thirty, the architecture was high. It was there not one mile up but rather universalist hodgepodge. On a side note it wasn't much of a wonder to think it was a sane choice when those in charge built something else after the Tokyo Imperial Hotel wasn't ruined in 1923 by the Great earthquake(of that year). Sure it took fifty years to build up the guts to be so bold, but in 1976 the hotel, aside from its facade and a pool, was demolished. Maybe the new hotel is contemporary and has a larger onsen. But don't take it wrong, I like the guy. I just do not enjoy people getting off on their friends, as I overheard guys saying to their girlfriend, whomever,

"You don't know who built this? Frank Lloyd Wright. He's famous, his architecture's great. You've never heard of Frank Lloyd Wright?" And variants, the like. They could have added, 'You didn't read all the stuffed out promo on this show?'

Surely the cost of admittance to this festival wasn't enough for such a precise deflating of my feelings about scenes in general.

The sound from the main stage was awful and the spectrum of autism throughout, was grand. After we walked around like falling spores from a coughing mouth we decided to check out the basement theatre. I walked in the wrong side and was quickly yelled at and scolded and, "OTHER DOOR!" It was ridiculous, and I almost left. Fucking Fire Marshall I guess. Not that anyone was apologizing for being an ass. So we waited, he counted heads. Apparently it was a running guess. We were admitted and we jaunted down to a crowded movie theatre sitting room with a band that was nearly Beefheart incarnate. Which, was nice for a while. Though certainly not my expectations, incarnate.

The small outdoor stage was impossible to get to, and the sound was low. But not so far beyond it was the way to the main stage, on which way to I found the portable closets with toilets were set up as a small colony to my left. They were mostly vacant and it crossed me that they could be a refuge of sorts from the depressing surroundings but failed on that matter. To wash your hands, if so inclined, you had to press your foot down on a pedal.

Once at the edge of the overflowing crowd for the main stage I could catch a glimpse of Dead Meadow. They were just ending their set but it was not really possible to get into the dense sea so we walked around and sat with the other bored folks on the far side as if we were going to picnic.

This main stage however was perhaps obviously the central point of interest. It had high platforms on which the bands played from, but not so high that you could really see the band over the heads of others if you hadn't waited around since the start. And certainly not high enough to be physical representations of the spiritual exaltation we performed in our heads with these people when we were alone.

What I thought would be a rare gathering of such a wide array of interesting and pretty people turned out to be not so different than the subdued crowd one often finds in a movie theatre. No one talking so much outside of their bubble. Of course maybe part of that is in my perception. However it was such a bore, and I keep typing 'suck' here so lets put a few in, suck suck suck, yes so after hours of silencing the feeling I finally admitted to myself around six that I might as well be back in the hotel to read a book or something. Feel as trapped here as there. Interaction was absent outside the reams of people who are fine wherever and came in packs; one guy had a, 'for all the fucked up children of the world we give you spacemen 3' shirt. Which seemed a nice way to close this paragraph.

But the groups of pretty people and the rest with their shields up and so insular lead me to really wonder about the ratio or correlation of this 'scene' and high functioning autism, and specifically aspergers. Does that relate to openmindedness, or even slogans of peace and love, or even simply to the general passivity of so many people there?

Deciding to skip the mile-lines for Earth/Growing/Sunn, and since I couldn't hear or see at the second outdoor stage, I decided to go over to the main stage and wait for Spoon, and finally Yoko Ono.

Spoon came on, and the apthur delay pedal was pretty much in full force. They played a great show, but everything was battered by this nasty feedback. Their sound guy looked like he was trying to talk to the engineers, and then maybe trying to ignore it. But, it was cool to see Spoon. Daniel looked really happy. And, these two young girls we're so enamored with him, and of course love and music go hand in hand. Though crushes over music, remember that. From the audience came calls of, "Turn down the bass!" "You look sexy like that!" "We Love You!" and so on. Spoon were really fantastic, it was just that Apthur pedal that dragged the show down from the point of view of me and maybe the audience.

Their set ended and the feeling really was there, the knobs must of been turned somewhere close to 'Anomie'. But not quite there, it was moreso a malaise not so much unlike the dissatisfaction one feels when watching commercials on a television while not wanting to be where you are, in an office, at home, wherever, it was that kind of thing plus I had a really bad headache.

But we had come for Yoko, and it wasn't until Sean spoke up and Yoko waved her hands, that the apthur fest delay pedal got turned down. They nearly turned it off. The feedback weakened and the crowd pulled out of it's slump, they were happy with the Onochord love lights, but dismayed at the video art. So I guess we all somewhat pulled together, emotionally. Or at least it seemed that way to me. I felt really happy, well fantastic, for the first time of that whole day. Yoko loosened us all up, and no matter how hard the Apthurfest delay pedal tried during her show I think we all felt pretty happy and open to enjoying ourselves, slagging off the cultural nausea I know I sure had been feeling. A cure for high functioning autism? Surely not, but I don't know.

Audience to Yoko, "I Love You"

After Yoko said it was over and walked off stage, the band went into a psychfunk jam.

To an enamored crowd, Yoko returned. The band switched places and did a song Sean said she hadn't done since the early seventies, 'Don't worry Kyoko(mummy's only looking for her hand in the snow)'.

It was fantastic.

After the show, people were lined up by the backstage with 'Two Virgins' lps and whatnot. Soon after, security came in telling them to move on and Arthurfest was basically over.

Yoko's show was amazing, and definitely made it all worthwhile.

We had come for Yoko and a relative birthday, well relative since it was the next day, it was close to twelve when got back to the hotel. By the end of the show my headache had become a sort of trauma and the triple coffee didn't work plus two parts of it sat undrank as a painkiller kicked in. It was then my brother's birthday, that morning I gave him my gift, which was that he could get whatever he wanted at this record store Amoeba or anything at this place Meltdown Comics. We got sidetracked and had to buy it at Wal-mart, the first season of Futurama. We saw gerenuk at the L.A. Zoo. They're like gazelle except even more alien. And I thought, how many creatures on this earth I don't even know about.

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