Upcoming shows you should check out
A thinking man’s dance party at the Crown
Asheville producer Marley Carroll took his time between the lovely glitch/ shoegaze album Melanaster in 2007 and the dancefloor triumph that was Sings, released late last year. His reasons could be boiled down to the fact that he essentially had too much to work with and wanted to find a home for all of it. Carroll is a classically trained percussionist, a champion turntablist and a songwriter of uncommon polish, and to unify so many disparate elements under one roof presented a challenge. All of his talents shine on Sings, however, and this past April, he gave it a consummate presentation when he preceded North Carolina-born producer extraordinaire Machinedrum on the final evening of Moogfest. His concept was one of a high degree of difficulty, an exploded version of his normal routine that fully incorporated synths, vocals, live sampling and his mind-blowing turntable skills. He’s still fresh with it, and he’s doing it again this Thursday night at the Crown at Carolina Theatre, this time at the top of a bill that includes local risers darklove, Collectr and Snare Blankets. Admission is $5, and the show starts at 8 p.m.
Bhutanese guitar savant plays first Greensboro show, releases debut LP later this summer
A little over a week ago, Ben Chasny of the experimental folk project Six Organs of Admittance finally made an announcement that’s been years in the making.
He’ll launch Hermit Hut later this summer, a record label conceived as a home to some of his favorite artists — the eclectic, the discrete and the abstract. For anyone familiar with Chasny’s own work, you’ll know that this means it can be difficult listening, but also a satisfying experience for those willing to confront it head on. The first release on Hermit Hut is, of course, a fitting one. Asheville guitarist Tashi Dorji has a backstory that’s almost as incredible as the singular style of acoustic guitar improv that he has perpetuated over numerous, mostly sold-out cassette releases. Originally from Thimphu, Bhutan, Dorji took up guitar while still a kid in the Himalayan city, learning from the classic rockers fuzzily transmitted through his radio.
When it came time to advance his studies, he picked Warren Wilson College and sent them a handwritten note explaining his desire to continue his guitar studies there. Warren Wilson College wrote back and offered Dorji a full ride. It was there that he found his best swim lane through the discovery of punk and avant-garde jazz, which today form only outlines in his broad, itinerant style. Dorji works in almost stream of consciousness modes, conjuring bouquets of dissonance that melt together into familiar modes, and shift the listeners attention toward the examination of individual tones rather than seeking out cogent themes.
Dorji’s self-titled album will be released on Hermit Hut this August 19, and he’ll certainly offer some of those compositions when he performs in Greensboro on Wednesday, June 25 at the first of four installments of the newly restructured Mosaic International Food and Music Festival. Full disclosure: I’ve worked with Mosaic since it was founded five years ago, handling many of the artist bookings, including this one. The festival is free to the public and opens at 5:30 p.m. in the Downtown Greensboro Railyard.