Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Art and confrontation. These two things hold hands so tightly. The ideas behind visual perspective were confrontational to the old school ideas of the picture plane. All of a sudden we had real depth. Is it any wonder that modern perspective use in painting and Mr. Copernicus were contemporaries(roughly)? They both brought more depth to the universe, internally and externally. The point of some art is to challenge. Obviously not ALL art, but there is that which is intended as a confrontation.

There is an art to confrontation. And it is not easy. It would seem that it is. Of course it is easy to offend, very easy. I am poorly paraphrasing now, but here goes; George Lucas was asked to put more 'emotional' scenes in his movie by his producers. He said basically that it was too easy, take a kitten on screen, show someone murder it or appear to, and voila', an emotional reaction. What he said was much harder to do was finding a way to interact with or challenge people BEYOND the obvious evocative imagery or concepts. (Aside, yes I do realize that Lucas is an extremely sappy director, but the film I am speaking of specifically is THX-1138) Think about how many times one may be disturbed by a more abstract gesture than a direct showing. Maybe something like a David Lynch movie can express this best.

The Band Whitehouse is a good sonic jumping off point. They were challenging to people at the time. Now the same things would be passe. They started in 1980 and took their name from the Brit moral advocate Mary Whitehouse and the porn rag of the same name. As you can see, they had their goal in mind from step one. However, they of course were preceded by bands such as Throbbing Gristle, SPK, Cabaret Voltaire, etc... However, Whitehouse chose to keep hitting the same point as opposed to moving about as much as some of their predecessors. Pretty much their schtik was piercing high end noise coupled with screaming, shouting, demanding, etc... vocals filled with hyper-violent imagery(yes, yes, I am simplifying). They spoke of rape, abuse, murder, misogyny, all the stuff people love to hear. Actually, what really made Whitehouse interesting was the fact that they pissed off the very audience that was there for them. It's not always easy to piss off a noise crowd with noise. They seemed to understand that there were some things that sonics can do to people's moods, couple that with the disturbing imagery/vocals and...voila again. Whitehouse met the audience on a field of their own division, so angering audiences that they had halls torn apart, riots, bottles thrown, their car destroyed, and death threats(however, there is speculation that some of this, esp. the latter, was part of the created mystique of the band). It is interesting to note that they never got banned from their home country for any of this(unlike Genesis P. Orridge, exiled from Britain for being too 'extreme').

Nor were they banned from performing, like Japanese noise terrorist Hanatarash. No one had to sign waivers for their safety at a Whitehouse show. Whereas Hanatarash was not only a danger to his audience, but to himself(almost cut his own leg off with a bandsaw at a show{accident of course}). Point of fact is that Whitehouse, for all their results, were actually a far safer band as their imagery and sound followed a more obvious path than the other noise artists who seemed to turn up unpleasantness underneath ANY rock they turned over. It is precisely when one can be shown a convention and have the conventional ideas surrounding it be questioned or upset that one has realized a new offense. A pile of shit on the ground is one thing, not too gross. But drizzle icing over it and add candy sprinkles, that same pile of shit takes on a whole new, more specifically disgusting meaning. It is a question of perspective indeed.

What am I talking about this for? It is interesting to see that the things that people find offensive have never and will never change. We are programmed to find some things off putting. It is instinctual not to want to roll around in shit. When we see someone else doing it, it is definitely a signal to keep back. This brings us to someone like(you knew it was coming) G.G. Allin. The thing that seemed to make him viable as an artist was the fact that people came to see him directly BECAUSE he was supposed to offend. Of course this leads to a quandary. How do you remain relevant(if your intent is to offend) when people are lining up to see you be offensive? The thing he did was that he actually lived it. Like Bukowski(up to a point)(no I'm not putting them in the same league here), he was willing to actually live the life that he portrayed. Indeed it seems the other way around, he portrayed the life he lived. But was he relevant? Of course any output can be deemed worth viewing, and relevancy is a totally objective term, but were there boundaries pushed? Beyond the shit flinging? Taste is a personal judgment indeed, but what of actual merit artistically? Did he push a boundary or at least explore a concept in a way that invited more interest? Did he do something different? Not really. Which is not to deem it unnecessary, The jester always has a function. A VERY important one indeed. He shows us the things we would usually find offensive, turns them on their head, and we laugh(see a thread here?) It is important to note that many times, people are offended by that which most intrigues them(death is the easiest example here, but also think of the anti-gay rights senator busted for solicitation at an airport{and not a female pro either]), and the jester gets to bounce these ideas off of his audience. He gives them an excuse to deal with what would normally be shunned. Allin definitely came off as more of a jester than a scientist.

We come back to Whitehouse. Scientists at one point, I believe. But maybe their field, like the Helio-centric theory, is not really culturally as important as it WAS because they helped to bring it into mainstream consciousness. And of course it is hard to keep pointing and screaming at the same thing and have an audience keep paying attention. The audience for Whitehouse now has become an audience that is going to the occasion because they know PRECISELY what to expect. now they are more of a, daresay, pop band(for a brief diatribe on noise going pop, see earlier posts). No, this obviously isn't a meticulously researched thesis, just thinking. Love to do it.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Old, old, old...

This is from sometime long ago. When I first got the MPC. I was to do a show and needed something to play between load times and some added texture. I recorded this direct to the Minidisc player, everything was improvised using the samples I recorded and loaded. The track was then cut up on the Minidisc player.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Acoustic and Acoustic-ish

From a few posts below. Details about these 2 sets.

Porch Session 1

09/13/2008 9:00 AM(or so) - Right after Ike.
Back porch of the crib
Me and Eddie Parsec from Together We are Instruments.



AWAKE : Acoustic guitar, Vocals
Eddie Parsec : Djembe, Modified Keyboard, Mini Kaoss Pad
Recorded live into two unmodified Barbie Karaoke tape recorders.

Pluckluck House Party

08/31/2008 05:30 PM - Potluck house party
Lineup :
Robt. Ellis
Corey Derden
Airon Paul Dugas

I have a recording of the whole show. It's fucking amazing. The other acts basically humbled me with their prowess. And the band brought it hard again as usual, so we sound great too. Thanks to Trey who developed this horrid huge blister on his left finger from the Upright. JD recorded this. JD and Stacey are wonderful people and great hosts.


Live at Walters 10-18-07

Rusted Shut

1st time seeing Alarma! They were tight.

Best Rusted Shut show I have seen.

AWAKE was me and Trey this time.


Monday, November 10, 2008


Hooray to 4 more years of lies and injustice.
Hooray to more thievery and murder.
Hooray to stupid shit ideas of change.
Hooray to more anti Palestinian sentiment.
Hooray to pro war stance.
Hooray to economic policies that support inequalities.
Hooray to conspicuous, thoughtless, consumption.
Hooray to the corporation.
Hooray to pulling the wool over the eyes of the public again.
Hooray to the continuation of the injustice system.
Hooray to control.
Hooray to the yes/no mindset.

Monday, November 3, 2008


What have we done?
What have we done?
Fostered sickness, avarice, greed, resentment, humiliation, Degradation, enslavement, ignorance, rapaciousness, and murder.
What have we done?
What have we done?
Created art, science, language, worth, liberty, and communication.
What have we sacrificed?
And what for?
What do you want?
To be validated?
Are the festering sores gouged in our planet not enough?
Must you write your name across the landscape so indelibly?
What have we forgotten?
Community, responsibility, affection, pride, respect, and most important,
Most important of all,
Not justice for those who participate in wanton hedonism and Destruction.
Justice for life itself.
We are becoming anti-self.
What do you want?
To be venerated?
At the cost of justice?
Is it so important to be heard?
Listen then.
Shut up and listen.
You will hear yourself.
The ultimate judgment.
Look around you.
What have we done that is so just?
What makes the difference?
You want to be a rock star?
Fuck your rock stars.
The music doesn't come from them.
It was always here.
You want to be a businessman?
Fuck your businessmen.
The value doesn't come from them.
It was always here.
You want to be a prophet?
Fuck your prophets.
The idea doesn't come from them.
It was always here.
Why is it so important to have the masses hear your words?
Do you think they have not been said before?
You want change?
No you don't.
Change comes from within?
Tell that to a bullet perforated body.
Tell that to a herd of cows.
Tell that to your so-called god.
Tell that to a slave.
You want people to listen to you?
Say something relevant.
Better yet.
Act different.
You can proselytize all day and night.
You will be ignored.
Just as this is being ignored.
You say this is too serious?
Life is serious business.
If you don't take it seriously.
If you don't act responsibly.
If you don't thirst for justice until you die.
You are wasting the one thing given.
Your mind.
Find justice now.
Look hard.
And realize that the replication and mass distribution of your voice Only adds to the chorus of wastrels that sing day and night to the Unconcerned.
Willful ignorance is no excuse.
Gurus will not save you.
Religion will not save you.
Science will not save you.
A few moments of fleeting pleasure will not sate you.
If you are not taking steps to move forward.
To take responsibility for your life and actions.
Then you are but a stumbling block.
Impeding true moral progress.
These atrocities are in your name.
When you do nothing you are an accomplice.
Complicit in the very actions you rage against.
You can't vote for change.
Or we would have voted ourselves out of the briny depths millenia Ago.
We are out of balance.
And there shall be a reckoning for us.
And it shall be just.
But you won't see it as such.
You will wonder:
What happened to my CD's
My DVD's
My happiness
My cheesebuger
Where did my Sunday drive go
My pets
My food
My life?
A life that you have been careless and wasteful with.
People are asking these questions now.
And bemoaning the fact that life is not fair.
Yes it is.
It is just.
It is a swift and brutal justice.
And all your constructs of plastic and metal
Your houses of chipboard and Tyvek
Your bank accounts
All your lies will fall around you like ashes
Once the fiery, stifled mouth of justice
And consumes you.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Band break

I have to write. And take care of other shit. So the band side is on hiatus for now. New LP around Feb. or so. Different direction. New shows to follow. Should be fun.

Will figure out what to do with the now 3(!) unreleased live recordings.

Thanks to all who support.



Played a few great shows since I last posted:

09/13/2008 9:00 AM - Right after Ike.
Back porch of the crib
Me and Eddie Parsec from Together We are Instruments.



AWAKE : Acoustic guitar, Vocals
Eddie Parsec : Djembe, Modified Keyboard, Mini Kaoss Pad
Recorded live into two unmodified Barbie Karaoke tape recorders.
I have a recording of this. I'm trying to figure out what to do with it.

08/31/2008 05:30 PM - Potluck house party
Lineup :
Robt. Ellis
Corey Derden
Airon Paul Dugas

I have a recording of the whole show. It's fucking amazing. The other acts basically humbled me with their prowess. And the band brought it hard again as usual, so we sound great too. Thanks to Trey who developed this horrid huge blister on his left finger from the Upright. JD recorded this. JD and Stacey are wonderful people and great hosts.

08/29/2008 08:00 PM - Avant Garden
Together we Are Instruments
Thomas Ayersol
J. Thelonious

J's first show and he did very well. Thomas Ayersol I had never seen live and it was a bang up job on his part. He parties in a way I really enjoy, listen or fuck off. Speaking of that, Together were the most together I've seen them yet. They get better every single time. And they were great when they started, so... We did good.

08/03/2008 01:00 PM - Shady Tavern
Secret Saturday Showcase.
Mucho bands.
They ruled. Highlights were Corey D, Robt. Ellis, And the Mathletes. Oh and it was No surprise that Nosaprise killed it. Thank you again veggie chili dog man, you're my hero.

Also, this marked the first of the acoustic sets.

06/15/2008 09:00 PM - Rudyards
Act of God

Intimidated? A bit. Really qualified musicians and hella nice guys.

06/09/2008 08:00 PM - Boondock’s
Wicked Poseur

They are intense. My brain is getting fuzzy going so far back.

05/31/2008 09:00 PM - Mink Backroom
The Mckenzies
The Gold Sounds

The Mckenzies always bring the party. This was no exception. And The Gold Sounds rocked it pretty damn hard too. I broke my own glasses.

05/10/2008 08:00 PM - The Mink Backroom
Golden Axe
The Jonx

Was this a good lineup? Gee, whadda you think?

04/19/2008 02:00 PM - Secret Saturday Show
Shit I can't remember now...
Judas Bear came back from tour and played.
Was there anyone else?

Saturday, May 24, 2008


I was poking around the net and happened across a review of an album. I won't mention the band as it is irrelevant(and besides...I don't like 'em anyway...). But the reviewer(who will also remain free publicity for this.) had this to say in summing up the LP.

"They set out to make a musical equivalent of a work of art — and succeeded."

Let's see. Hmmm...


1. the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance.

2. the class of objects subject to aesthetic criteria; works of art collectively, as paintings, sculptures, or drawings: a museum of art; an art collection.

3. a field, genre, or category of art: Dance is an art.

4. the fine arts collectively, often excluding architecture: art and architecture.

5. any field using the skills or techniques of art: advertising art; industrial art.

6. (in printed matter) illustrative or decorative material: Is there any art with the copy for this story?

7. the principles or methods governing any craft or branch of learning: the art of baking; the art of selling.

8. the craft or trade using these principles or methods.

9. skill in conducting any human activity: a master at the art of conversation.

10. a branch of learning or university study, esp. one of the fine arts or the humanities, as music, philosophy, or literature.

11. arts,
a. (used with a singular verb) the humanities: a college of arts and sciences.
b. (used with a plural verb) liberal arts.

12. skilled workmanship, execution, or agency, as distinguished from nature.

13. trickery; cunning: glib and devious art.

14. studied action; artificiality in behavior.

15. an artifice or artful device: the innumerable arts and wiles of politics.

16. Archaic. science, learning, or scholarship.

Sorry. Just the dumbest thing I have read in a minute. Pretty idiotic statement. And it's from a 'professional' writer... Am I supposed to know what they meant? I do, it means you're lazy. The review was as pointless as most, not much in the way of actual assessing of the work, mostly just frivolous trivia about the band and their lives. Whatever. I know it's common. But damn that is an asinine thing to say.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Pics of the studio/workspace.

Now I have shelves, so there is a bit more organization. I'll post more later.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

What's the difference?

Been having discussions with various friends about art(shock!). Some thoughts that circulated:

- Why is it common for people to equate art that they do not like with the personality, intelligence, etc... of the artists themselves? Just because you may dislike someone's film, or painting, etc... doesn't seem to give reason to judge the person on a fundamental level. I see/hear this happening often enough that it bugs me I guess. Yet we can overlook Miles Davis being a dick BECAUSE of his music, so the opposite isn't always in effect.

- "I don't like it so it isn't art!" mentality. Another extremely common mentality it would seem amongst appreciators of art. I guess it's obvious how lame that sentiment is, but it seems to be another VERY common attitude. And tragic. Sure it's good to know what you like and don't like, but leave some room to grow. I used to hate tomatoes, now I love them. I didn't force it, but I didn't refuse to try them. I only disliked the raw fruit anyway, so I knew that I was reacting to a specific perspective and therefore allowed for the possibility of eventually liking tomatoes. This is being open to growth.

- The LCD factor. What is this? Mass appeal. Lowest common denominator shit. This is tricky. So what if your art has mass appeal? In other words most everyone enjoys it. What does that mean/translate into? A few different ideas surrounding this have come up. And these are obviously not the only way to view the issue, this is just some of what came up:

1) If a majority enjoys the work it may be a sign that the art is extremely non-threatening or conservative in message or medium. I believe it is quite possible to couch a difficult message in a easy to swallow medium. The inverse is true, but harder to create mass appeal with as the medium itself would be off putting.

2) The cheeseburger effect. Ok, so when you go to a fast food place, no one is fooling anyone. You know and they know that the meal you will eat is not great. It's not fresh, not very sanitary, not very tasty, etc... When one goes to, for example, Taco Hut, one does not expect authentic mexican food. It is a shallow representation of the idea that is also cheaper, faster, and more 'regulated' in terms of taste(won't taste different from one location to the next). So how can one expect depth or variety from fast food art? IE. the shit has been processed and quality controlled, group approved and force fed. There's no democracy on the radio(am/fm) so it is a medium that, at this point, forces people to accept the output as listen-able and 'good'. But of course everything has it's place...

3) Zeitgeist. Right place, right time, right sound. Is this luck? Sometimes, but some artists(the really perceptive ones) seem to be out there at the front lines of experience feeding us the right thing at the right time. Seeing and anticipating.

4) Eventuality. Take the Flaming Lips as an example(there have been others to be sure...). They plugged away at what they wanted to hear for a LONG time. It seems pretty inevitable that anyone that does this with dedication will cover some ground that is enjoyable on a widespread level. The Boredoms are another great example. Compare "Doo Ya Tari" with "Vision Creation Newsun". Definitely NOT speaking of the whole monkeys and typewriters thing here. I am speaking of INTENT, not random chance.

- "It's experimental, I don't have to be responsible for what it means/says to anyone" Ok. But why participate in art then? It would SEEM the major impetus behind art is, at base, communication. Sure, one can communicate the idea of indifference to the audience, but even that becomes a pose. It would seem that an artist then has a RESPONSIBILITY to the art, the audience, and themselves. An artists job ultimately is to output for others to input. But yelling 'fire' in a crowded theatre is not covered under free speech, it's just irresponsible. This idea applies to art then. And most especially to experimental material.

Thoughts. Just thinking. Love to do it.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Dave does what he does SECOND best...ordering a drink.

Derek is so bad ass he bursts into flames at the shows!

Trey's split personality

Dave doing what he does best...getting at it!

I'll shred now.

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Lately I have been doing a good deal of research into modification of existing instruments/toys and building instruments (electronic for the most part). This is beginning to meet with a modicum of success. I hope to have a few examples up here soon. I have a pretty fine stockpile of gear waiting to be modded. So I expect I will begin selling some stuff as I finish it. More about this later. Meanwhile, here are some links for more info to maybe get you started on this too.

This dude is the jam!

Great site for modding

Reed Ghazala, the Godfather of Bending

Nicolas Collins, a bad mother...


March 9th 2008

Secret Chiefs 3

Wonderful show. Man, talk about skilled musicians! Everyone was damn good! And Trey Spruance is great and accommodating to people with questions.

Oh yeah. Did I mention we killed it? Fuck yes we did. We set up in front of the stage as Estradasphere/SC3 had a TON of stuff on stage. Easily our best show yet.

Pictures will be forthcoming as well as some video clips. Merch coming someday.

Friday, February 29, 2008

2 Shows

Feb 22nd.

Great show!

Potbelly were on their 1st show at a venue, and you couldn't tell. Quite together. Nice job guys!

Kvalla. Kvalla kills. Great band, great sound, and gotta love that bassist! I don't think I've seen a person smile on stage that much ever!

We did well. Once again I'm lucky to play with guys this good.

Walter's on Washington
Feb 16th

What a great show!


Ringo Deathstarr
For That Day

If you missed this, you blew it. It was awesome! All the bands rocked. 'Ringo Deathstarr' from Austin had some great, loud, shit that made me have to stare at some shoes for a bit. 'For That Day' from Toronto. What can I say? Wow, that's what. Totally pro and they weren't even playing on their own gear. Great songs and intense! 'Co-pilot' are from Houston, but I never knew these guys. How could I not though? They are fucking awesome! A great way to end the night. Fucking symphonic. Don't miss these guys next time. Seriously

It was an honor to share the stage with musicians of so great a calibre as these guys. And a privilege to have such perfect musicians as Trey, Dave, and Derek playing alongside me(holding it down).

Thursday, January 17, 2008


From Warren Ellis:

He put 'Whattanight' on his website for a minute. This is what he had to say.

' AWAKE are, if you like, evil shoegaze. They're the people who fucked shoegaze in the night, puked blood in shoegaze's toilet, made a shank in shoegaze's bathroom and cut shoegaze's boyfriend, and then left before dawn with all shoegaze's money. There's just something sleazy about the sound of "Whattanight" that you rarely hear in the field.'

From John Nova Lomax :

He attended a Secret Saturday show we played(12 Jan 08). He gave a great review to Shady Tavern and had a bone to toss to us as well.

'...sludgy, pummeling rock'

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Shhh... It's a secret!

AWAKE played at Shady Tavern (1206 20th) in the Heights on the 12th January 2008.

It was great! Our new drummer Derek kills it! It is an honor to be playing alongside musicians of this calibre!

Also playing that day was local hip hop artists Fat Tony and Smash Bro. Fucking great as well! Refreshing, not a bunch of guntalk/rims, etc... Rhymes were tight and the energy was definitely there. Look for these guys to be blowing up and if you get the chance to see a show, don't blow it. FAT TONY'S MySpace

Then the 2 mc's were joined by another guy for some freestyles, he was game tight as well and whereas the songs in their set showed a careful crafting of lyrics and structure, their freestyles were wild and off the chain! Spitting fast and truly freestyling, great! They were kind enough to let yours truly handle the mic for a minute. The beat was cut off to announce that a car was blocking somebody, but prolly a good thing as it cut me off and I didn't have the chance to blow it!

The last act was a local toaster whose name escapes me(Don Dadda?) but he was tight. He was accompanied by the owner of his label(Lions Blood), 'Mr. Belvedere'(aka Ginger Bread Man). Both put on an enjoyable show showcasing a different take on hip-hop than the previous group. Once I find a link for Lions Blood productions, I'll post it.

And Shady Tavern itself is a freaking great place! DO NOT MISS THE CHANCE TO ROLL OUT ON SATURDAYS(if you don't work Saturday as I do...)! You will not regret it! Beer, Wine, BYOL, and a cat cooking Gardenburgers(thanks so much! From one veggie to another!). Support this shit! This is possibly one of the cooler things to do in this city!!! JD rocks!!!!

Secret Saturday Shows.

Thanks to all involved!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Seastack EP

DL the Seastack EP.

Out on the CGR net label.



Floating, falling, moving faster
Dreams of Change and feelings followed
Rivers rise and seas at high tide
Rest your head upon my shoulder
We shall watch this old explosion
Naming the debris that's left
Crashing waves of green now paper
Copper wire nervous systems
Stone mapped out form arteries
Pumping platelets made of steel
Optics spring from vacuum tubes
Phallic pushing back the sackcloth
Stars now big and earth made small
Sand made clear can still be blown
Glassy eyed and taking pictures
Buying pasts and trading futures
Bony fingers rise from earth
Trying to escape the tomb
When was it you got so big?
Opinions hang like clouds of gnats
Burning down the paper people
Lobotomized by CRT's
Desires sold in two dimensions
Wingless flies crawling on windows
Babylon just keep on growing
Broadcasting the new tradition
Words that cut like whips on flesh
Feel me burn now ashes left

It's Surge

Not a condition
Just a way to feel
Not a disease
Just a means of defense
Not an obstacle
Just a chance to pause
Not opposition
Just a need to expand
Not a separate thing
Just so far away
Can't feel anything

I have an answer
To why should/does the plant surge
And try so
And dry so
And cry so

Happy Birthday LP

DL the Happy Birthday LP