Known for his frenetic style crossing blues, punk, and free improvisation, Bill Orcutt is hailed as a master guitarist and has been a central driver of experimentalism since his days with 90s punk/noise duo Harry Pussy.
ISSUE Project Room's Fall 2015 season opens at the First Unitarian Congregational Society in Brooklyn Heights with Bill Orcutt and Circuit Des Yeux duo, as well as a solo set by Loren Connors. Known for his frenetic style crossing blues, punk, and free improvisation, Bill Orcutt is hailed as a master guitarist and has been a central driver of experimentalism since his days with 90s punk/noise duo Harry Pussy.
This evening Orcutt appears for the first time duo with Circuit Des Yeux, alias of Chicago’s Haley Fohr. Celebrated for her brooding, raw songwriting and singular four-octave voice, Fohr shared bills with Orcutt numerous times before the pair came together for the recent release All That's Real, a collaborative 7” on Orcutt’s Palilalia label. Legendary improvising guitarist Loren Connors performs a solo set. Connors’ solo compositions have evolved continuously over three decades, moving between bare and soaring textures, yet always articulate with a deeply expressive core.
Bill Orcutt’s sound is a hiccup-stuttered reimagining of blues guitar. One can hear familiar Southern folk scales between Orcutt’s jagged solo acoustic phrases, pulling and pushing melodies into unresolved fragments that eventually come unmoored in vast and satisfying note-torrents. Former guitarist and founder of the noise/punk rock duo Harry Pussy, Orcutt was already a significant name in experimental noise circles when he released his solo debut in '96, and has published a string of releases since confirming his essential role in the contemporary experimental scene. Long interested in cutting-edge art, Orcutt had a Master's in English and had made several experimental short films, one of which sold to MTV in 1990. He also played in several local punk bands, most notably the Trash Monkeys, before forming Harry Pussy in 1992 with his wife, drummer Adris Hoyos. They worked together for the next five years, releasing a series of uncompromising and confrontational recordings on small labels and gaining acclaim from the likes of Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and Sebadoh's Lou Barlow.
Haley Fohr’s music strikes a unique balance between the personal and universal. As Circuit des Yeux she creates music that embodies the complexity of human emotions, juxtaposing tenderness and grief, ecstasy and horror, using sounds as representations of the emotional spectrum that we all experience. Fohr’s striking voice, an impassioned baritone, is the music’s centerpiece and guiding force. On her most recent release, In Plain Speech (Thriss Jockey, 2015), Fohr is joined by some of the most progressive musicians in the Chicago music community; Cooper Crain (Cave, Bitchin Bajas), Whitney Johnson (Verma), Rob Frye (Bitchin Bajas), Adam Luksetich (Little Scream), and Kathleen Baird (Spires That In The Sunset Rise). Fohr cements her reputation as a fearless songwriter and inventive arranger with this stirring collection of songs that are both gorgeous and emotionally potent.
Brooklyn-based guitarist Loren Connors was born in New Haven, Connecticut in 1949. Best known as a composer and improviser, Connors has issued over 50 guitar records on his own imprints (Daggett, St. Joan, Black Label) since the late 1970s and over two dozen on other labels across the globe. He has recorded under the names Guitar Roberts, Loren Mattei, Loren MazzaCane Connors and other variations. Connors' singular adaptation of the blues is a distinct personal vision combining the Delta bottleneck sound and the ancestral blues voice (appearing as distortion, baying hounds or multi-tracked guitar), with hauntingly unexpected sounds. Outside of Connors' three decades of solo work, he has collaborated with Suzanne Langille, Jim O'Rourke, Darin Gray, Alan Licht, Christina Carter, Keiji Haino, San Agustin, Jandek and many others, as well as leading the group Haunted House.
Image: Loren Connors, Circuit Des Yeux, Bill Orcutt by Bradley Buehring
Monday, September 14, 2015 - 8:00pm
First Unitarian Congregational Society
116 Pierrepont St., Brooklyn 11201