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RE: Loopstock 2004: another eyewitness account
I have been meaning to chime in on this for over a week now....
It was so great to have a day to hang and listen to some incredbily
And, there were some "interesting" events; namely the "loopers vs. the
cowboys and the jukebox: which unfortunately was coming to a head just as
was starting my set, and the vibe kinda threw me. Stan and Rick both have
made some very kind comments about my playing and I thank you both very
Hans had mentioned to me when I first arrived at Loopstck that morning
he really wanted to get a lot of "collaboration" going on, and the lack of
schedule certainly achieved that. Perhaps a stroke of genius? At one
we had all of the participants on stage in a glorious demonstation of
controlled loop-mayhem. Yes it was tricky to find your space (and often
that involved not playing at all...but listening to what the others were
doing was just as fun!)
Here's my run down:
Satnatarium: My God! What a quantum leap Stan has made with his music and
looping! Certaily, there were all the hall marks of a Stanatarium
performance (the surf-guitar quotes and generous doses of tremolo...as
as the sheer volume!). Yet Stan showed a lot of growth; displaying an
of guitar tones and textures from ambient drones (complete with random
speeding up and slowing down of the loops) to Neil Young-ish
distorto-rage...and everything in between. This coupled with some very
arrangements of lopps and song-type structures. I think everyone was
impressed with Stan's opening set. Ending with a duet of "Love
Rollercoaster" with the human beat box Rick Walker was so very cool....
David Giovachinni: a "newbie" brought to us by Jon Wagner, showed some
incredile musicality on "toy" instruments; his playing of a kid's toy
trumpet was outstandning, and his loping on a laptop with Abelton Live
really demonstrated some new approaches. The duet set with Jon and David
was fantastic...with the voice of William Burroughs sitting in as a guest.
Jon, as always, was simply incredible. No drum set this time, just a lot
"do-dads" from which he coaxed the most wonderous rhythmical loops and
shadings...I always love playing with Jon.
Michael Klobuchar: dude, you never cease to amaze me! Some really
incredbile loops and sounds...and as I was postioned on stage right next
you, I kept stopping to listen to these seriously manicical sounds that
popping ot of your gtr and Boomerrang.
Bernard Wagner, who came al lthe way from Switzerland to attend Loopstck,
did a short set solo and then, humbly asked some of to join him on stage.
What a gas.... I especially enjoyed improvising with Bernard, and his
"low-tech" octaver bass sounds created quite a low end rumble as he and I
mimiced each others bass-lines! I t was great to meet you, and I hope to
you again (Y2K4?). Bernard sat in with just about everyone, and kept
really cool little bits to everything. Iwas quite impressed.
Then there were those fabulous Walker Brothers....Bill really put on a
dazzling show. Eschewing his usual "mission control" setup for two DL4s,
nonetheless demonstrated, and quite masterfully, the use of
half-time/double-time loops, the illusion of syncing machines which are
"un-sync-able" and a deep and powerful musical sense. I was quite floored
by Bill's set..and a bit intimidated at going on after him!
Rick Walker again showed us how much fun a looping performance can be.
Playing a variety of found objects and kids' toys, his set was at once
fun and profound, and it reminded me tjhat often we become so rapt with
technology and isssues therein, that we, or at least I, sometimes forget
that music is fun. He amazed, dazzled and made us laugh. I have come to
expect this of Rick, yet, everytime I see/hear him play, by the end of the
set I feel happier than I did before. There is a certain joy and beauty
And finally, Hans...who put the whole thing together, and in sme twisted
stroke of genius made it more than just a "looping event". This was the
first festival like this where the focus, for the most part, was
between the particapants, and a musical dialogue created via loops. That
alone is somewhat noteworthy......as was his handling of the "cowboy
incident" Thanks Hans!
Hans' own set featured some rather cool human beat box sounds, looped of
course,and then sliced and diced in a really cool and unique way (another
technique I need to steal!) and some seriously DEEP dub-style bass lines
which shook the house.
All in all...a splendid time was had by all...and it was again to see Kim
Flint in attendence. And for all those who didn't make it...the next time
someone post a "gig spam" about a looping event, and you are anywhere near
the venue, go to it! Get and support each other (and, as Rick pointed
the bonus is the variety of tricks, techniques and inspirations which you
will come away with.
Thanks to all who were there....great seeing, hearing and playing with you