Wolves, Lower

Shelley put on another spectacular show on behalf of WCBN in the apse of the UM art museum last Tuesday. Lower Dens, with local songstress Aran Ruth opening.

LD had a mother of a set up, lots of pedals, and even their own sound guy. I forget his name but he was as effervescent as a peppermint Altoid.

I was asked to DJ pre-show and in-between acts so I arrived armed with my laptop and a playlist over 60 minutes long. Soundguy didn’t know there was going to be a DJ, he muttered something about just plugging in his iPod. This made me feel better.

LD ran late setting up and with their subsequent sound check, so the doors opened late. Thus my pre-show DJ set was a bit truncated. Trainspotters still came by to look at my playlist. Then I was all confused when Aran Ruth did her soundcheck so I stopped the music for a minute.  Whoops.

Aran’s set reminded me a smidge of Comus, and early Devendra Banhart.  Her dark psych-folky tunes were given a hauntological patina courtesy of Chuck Sipperly’s synth drones and treated/’prepared’ electric guitar by Scott DeRoche.

Jana Hunter’s singing reminded me a bit of Zola Jesus (who in turn evokes Siouxsie Sioux).  LD’s sound was gothy, droney and persistent. There is no lead instrument, really.  Every line built on top of another, then weaved together and throttled the ears.  Minimalist yet bombastic.

The apse inside the UM Museum of Art is a GREAT place to see shows.  Just fabulous. But the guards looked bored. The admin staff charged with overseeing the show looked slightly put out.  I do hope they realize how much we appreciate their cooperation.  I remember years ago, when WCBN arranged for The Books to perform in the apse. It was so crowded they opened up the top level and people were swinging limbs over and under the rails.

The one catch is that all shows must end at 10pm.  Not sure if that means performance must end by 10pm or that shit must all be packed up and everyone must be OUT by 10pm. So, ergo, early shows. Still not too bad a thing.

Oh, and I’d DJ again.


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