Monday, 28 December 2009

Gardenia at The Tranzac 17/12/09

Some photos from the recent Gardenia performance with Nick Storring. All photos courtesy of Karol Orzechowski / DECIPHER

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Eye Weekly review of show with Nadja

Decent review of the show, I don't think he really got what Nick and I we're doing with some of the less palpable elements of our set ("unnecessary electro noise"?, "video game noises"??) but he enjoyed the rest at least.

Nadja @ the Tranzac Club, Dec. 17
With Adam Saikaley, Gardenia

By Chris Bilton December 18, 2009 14:12

Forget about all the talk of the death of physical formats in music. Nadja is single-handedly keeping both CDs and vinyl alive with their copious releases — somewhere in the neighbourhood of 10 this year, including the just-released Pyramids collaboration. A quick scan of their merch table at Thursday night’s Tranzac show reveals five or six records and almost a dozen discs. But with bands like Sunn O))) and Boris as inspiration, the drone/doom scene has always been about limited editions and special pressings and, to a large extent, collectors’ items. Consequently, Nadja is the perfect band for noisenik hobbyists.

While opening act Adam Saikaley doesn’t have any discs to sell, he’s certainly fit for this scene. Playing his first Toronto gig, the Ottawa artist crafts a handful of overlapping tone pulses into hypnotic dronescapes that make your entire head resonate as if your skull is a perfectly designed echo chamber that Saikaley is piping his music into directly. Essentially, they're the kind of sounds you’d expect to hear in a mind-control experiment. Saikaley seems to produce this distinctive palette using three VCRs playing tapes which are then manipulated with slight knob-twiddling. It all sounds a bit like that nauseating, frequency freak-out track “How Will We Know? (Futuristic Crashendos)” on The Flaming Lips’ Zaireeka, except, in a twisted way, more fun.

Bryan Walker’s set alongside Nick Storring — the latter of I Have Eaten the City and Picastro fame — starts off beautifully with swirling mix of guitar feedback and cello scraping noises that’s like the house music from inside an ice castle. Billed as Gardenia, the duo is ethereal and all-consuming, especially once Storring starts introducing snippets of cello melodies and the self-manipulating through various electronic loops. Things take a turn for the worse when industrial electronics filter in beneath video-game noises that sound straight out of Yar’s Revenge. This improves during a cello solo that’s treated with enough effects to make it impossibly breathy (almost like a pan flute), and then again we descend into more unnecessary electro noise.

Local (but often-on-tour) duo Nadja take the stage quickly in order to get their set in under the wire of the Tranzac’s 11pm curfew, which makes for a bit of a muddy start. But the brief blast of sub-par sound is worth enduring once we’re all blanketed in guitar tones as thick as a woolly mammoth’s hide. The second track — a cover of A-Ha’s “When I See the Sun Always Shines on TV” from Nadja’s covers record of the same name — is probably the catchiest thing you will ever hear them play. Which is not to say it’s not brutally heavy — or rather what Jayson Greene’s Pitchfork review likened to a chopped and screwed shoegaze record (“screw-gaze,” though I prefer doom-pop). Last up is a weighty slab of straight up doom-gaze, with Leah Buckareff playing bowed bass and Baker hashing out some hyper-fuzzed leads. Clocking in at just over 30 minutes, the set definitely leaves the audience hungry for more Nadja. Thankfully, the merch table is well stocked.

Gardenia 10/12/09

Videos from performance with Bron Halpin. captured by Ayal Senior // dreamweaponfilm

Wednesday, 9 December 2009


This is what I want for xmas.

Hotel Igloo Village Kakslauttanen, Finland

Surrounded by Lapland's exotic and stunning scenery, Hotel Igloo Village Kakslauttanen offers 31 first-class log cabins in Lapland. Hotel Igloo Village Kakslauttanen is located in the Saariselka fell area amidst beautiful Finnish Lapland scenery in the vicinity of Urho Kekkonen National Park along the road leading to Nordkap and the Arctic Ocean. Just look at these pictures to see how stunning this place is...

Imagine yourself sleeping in an Igloo made of Snow. It is totally quiet. Lights inside ice illuminate the Igloo. These make the atmosphere so exciting that never get bored of marvelling it, until you fall to deep, comfortable sleep in your warm down sleeping bag.

When sleeping in the Glass Igloos the customer is able to marvel the amazing northern lights and the millions of stars in the sky. The experience is also unforgettable when there is a snowstorm.

Kakslauttanen is a cool place for seeing the Northern Lights, Aurora Borealis, as in the area there are not so many electric lights outside and it is north enough so that the probability of them is very high from late August to late April.

Katie Paterson - Ice records

This makes me love "vinyl" even more than I ever did before.


3 litres glacial meltwater, 3 litres silicon, 3 turntables [2007]

Sound recordings from three glaciers in Iceland, pressed into three records, cast, and frozen with the meltwater from each of these glaciers, and played on three turntables until they completely melt. The records were played once and now exist as three dvds. The turntables begin playing together, and for the first ten minutes as the needles trace their way around, the sounds from each glacier merge in and out with the sounds the ice itself creates. The needle catches on the last loop, and the records play for nearly two hours, until completely melted.

listen here

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Gardenia // The Constant of Drift

Above is two versions of the artwork for the new Gardenia. The first designed by Artie Wosko as a 4-panel digipak which I hope can get printed sometime in the new year. Until then I'll be making some CDR copies which will be available at the two upcoming Gardenia shows this month (see posts below) with the 2nd set of artwork above designed by yours truly. Artie's work deserves a quality print job, better than kinko's can provide and I can afford at this moment.

You may know Artie's work from the recently released album COLOSSUS by TITAN as well as most of their t-shirts. Basically just check out Titan's merch table to see some great work by him and maybe eventually there will be something on his website again, Self Inflatable

Thursday, 3 December 2009

December 17th poster