Bardo Pond / Major Stars / Honey Radar / Henry Owings at JB’s Friday, February 16 at 9 PM
Come on out it’s going to be a good one!
They alter brain chemistry by the alchemical effect of distressed sound alone, aspiring to become engineers of the soul’s passage to alternate states of consciousness.
At the foundation of the pyramid, the drums of Jason Kourkounis and the bass of Clint Takeda lay down a sinewy, sexy and hypnagogic bottom end. At the centre of the pyramid, the twin guitars of John and Michael Gibbons send out emissaries of fire, flaying flesh from bone in a storm of holy liberation. Isobel Sollenberger inhabits the place where the pyramid meets the eye of their storm, weaving fibres of voice, flute and violin through the din.
I heard someone comment recently that the limits of music have now been defined, bracketed by John Cage’s silence at one end and Merzbow’s maximum noise at the other, leaving only the option of filling the spaces in between. Bardo Pond demonstrate how much scope there is to innovate within that continuum. If rock music is to have any relevance in the new millennium, it is bands like Bardo Pond that will make it so.
Guitarist Wayne Rogers sang lead vocals on all of the band’s releases through 2005’s 4, when Sandra Barrett joined to take over those duties. Barrett left the band in 2008 and was replaced by Amanda Bristow, who joined during the recording of the album Return To Form. Vocalist Hayley Thompson-King joined in 2010, and appears on the albums Decibels of Gratitude and Motion Set but has since left the group and the current live singer is Noell Dorsey.
“Not sure if it’s layered solo work or a group or what, but it’s great short pop spasms owing equal debts to early New Zealand’s South Island groups and Guided By Voices.”
– The Wire
It should be added that Owings is currently the top selling artist in the long-dead Mini Disc market for 2017. His record “Micro-Impressions Vol. 1” has sold four copies. Then again, that was just at last count. It might be more by now.