The Ghost Ease, Fingers Moen, Spun Monkey Patrol @ Ella Street Social Club, 1.19.12
Arrived in time to hear the last of the Ghost Ease, always a pleasure, and sounded even better to this ears than the last time i saw her (more about that here). Earlier in the set, she apparently played with a sort of noisy, minimal guitarist, that sounded excellent, that had my friend enthusing at length. Sorry i missed it, have to see her again.
I also mostly missed Fingers Moen, whom i wrote about over here. My friend and i decided to duck out and get bagels with food stamps from Fred Mayer, while they were still open, and just barely missed a teargas incident. Everyone was standing out on the street, smoking cigarettes and talking. We thought the band had finished, but it cleared up and Fingers Moen went inside and finished. Sat outside on the steps and ate bagels and cream cheese and talked to my friends Jake and Matty about sarcastic crust punk while Matty tried vainly to chase down people entering the venue, in an attempt to get the $5 surcharge. (He wad working the door). I liked listening to Fingers Moen folksy Velvet Underground/Neil Young homage through the wall than actually watching them on stage. They had a bass player with them this time, as well, and i thought it helped fill out the songs a lot, although he was brand new and didn't know the tunes yet.
The last band, whom i surmised from Matty were to be an 'instrumental jam band'. Its funny, there's a part of me that groans internally when i hear those words in combination, although i tend to listen to a lot of hippy rock, at times, and even play that kind of music, sometimes. Its probably my inner music snob. That sound should be located and exterminated.
The Spun Monkey Patrol ended up being a talented instrumental funk/rock/electro three piece. All of the musicians were gifted on their instruments; the guitarist made love to his Les Paul, while the bassist kept it together with a solid thumpslapnpop, and the drummer bordered on Drum 'n Bass breakbeat exactitude. Everybody's tone was solid, they all had nice instruments that they knew how to play, and the sound in the venue was exactly right, levels in complete harmony, leaving no auditory afterburn afterwards. They encapsulated everything that is good and right about jam band music: its danceability, its optimism, its libido. They got a crowd of people moving on the dance floor, which was the first time i'd seen that go down at Ella St.
Seeing so much live music clearly illustrates the tug of war that goes on with my mind. Music is the air in which i live and breathe, i am pretty much surrounded by it all times, and it is interesting to see the different ways in which i relate to it. At times, i don't hear it at all. At times, it lifts me to the heavens. At times, in plunges me into the pit. The sound almost always wins me over, however, and i am elevated; my small self dissolves like a receipt in the rain. My eyes close. A small, sly smile will cross my face. My body will begin to move, of its own accord, and i am GONE, which is to say i am entirely present.
Just some random Thurs. night in the Pacific Northwest. Nothing special about it, except for that millions of years of evolution, and billions of cosmic dust, coalesced to form a cross-section of humanity and pick up the ritual that has been played through millions of times before, in a billion different ways, and is, inexplicably, brand new. The faithful gather, hoods up against the rain: in the sound, you can hear the echoes of all the saints, the children, angels and windstorms and holy whales. It amasses like a Mandelbrot set, deep and mysterious, and as you gaze, you reaize the term 'everyday consciousness' or 'waking thought' is such a fucking joke. There ain't no such thing.
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