Sunday, July 01, 2012

See You on Aldebaran: Live at 1919 Hemphill

I finally checked out 1919 in Fort Worth, Texas, at 1919 Hemphill, "a collectively-run, all-volunteer, not-profit, warehouse space . . . around since September 2002." The name brings to mind the end of the Great War and the Treaty of Versailles, but last night it was independent music. Though for legal reasons no alcohol is allowed inside, there are plenty of watering holes in the area, including the 1912 Club across the street (apparently a bar).

1919 reminds me of a similar anarchists' space in Philadelphia, which in turn triggers a memory of Clare Cotugno at Temple University -- because she once said she hated anarchists and Bob Dylan. I find anarchists interesting and have always liked Bob Dylan, so . . . what can you do? Every city needs such social spaces.

But last night's was an intimate show, indeed: I'm guessing that there were no more than thirty people present for any particular band at any one time. That's a shame, because all were worth seeing -- though I may have missed Saint Evie.

When I arrived, Un Final Fatal, a hardcore punk band from Puerto Rico, was thrashing through their set. 

Downstairs at 1919 Hemphill is more of a reading and hanging out area; the music was all upstairs in a hot and sweaty warehouse-style space. Thanks to Un Final Fatal, the floors were shaking, taking me back in mind to a frenetic gig at Saint Anthony's in Chapel Hill in the late 1980s featuring the Flat Duo Jets.

After things settled down a bit, singer-songwriter-filmmaker Eric Ayotte sang, among other songs, "Fallujah," about the Iraq War, and mentioned having adapted some of his grandfather's poems into songs (he did one of these, also).

Also playing were Anti Sociales, a second punk band from Puerto Rico: I thought them high spirited, a bit more like Ramones, perhaps, than Un Final Fatal. Their performance, though brief, stood out. Above is the cover of one of their albums, ¡Adiós, Señor Pingüino!  I picked up a copy, along with their apparently newest record, Las Menos Macabras de las Vidas (Plan-It-X Records).

Inky Skulls did a brief set involving magic and a demonic ex-boyfriend, I believe (i.e. if I heard them right). The "regular" band is some kind of spinoff from Ghost Mice, if I understood correctly, featuring barefooted Emily Rose on ukulele and Chris Clavin on bass guitar -- from Bloomington, Indiana. The elfin Rose reminds me a little of of Jean Seberg in Godard's Breathless / À bout de souffle (1960). They were backed by two musicians from France, Pascaloo (Pascal) on drums and "Geoffroy the Door" on electric guitar. I believe they are also their own group, Besoin Dead. At any rate, I picked up a new "split cassette" after the show that says on the cover, Besoin Dead & Jessica 93 (Mon Cul 2012).

Besoin Dead finished the night with a vibe that reminded me -- in very good ways -- of the cool electric guitar sounds created by East Bay Ray of Dead KennedysThe Stooges (Ron Asheton) on Funhouse (1970), and Pink Floyd's "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" (1969). Just before the set, Pascal had strapped an electric guitar to one of his drums and then smacked it regularly with a drumstick when they played. Can you dig?

Next stop for the Plan-It-X tour: Austin, Texas. One van has air conditioning, one doesn't. Let's hope they swap off from time to time.

Today's Rune: Fertility.       


the walking man said...


Adorably Dead said...

Poor Senior Pinguino! Someone get him down, unless he is headed for adventure, then Gods speed Pinguino!

I want to see a punk band with you one day, lol. :p

Erik Donald France said...

Hey WM, cheers ~~!

AD, chuckles and you betcha ;->