Luke Einsiedler plays in the band ARVID NOE. He has been prolific in booking shows in the Boston area for several years now, most notably @ PROBLEM HOUSE. Luke has a small record distro from which, he’ll seel you records, including Thee Oh Sees “Vol. 3” that made his list. If interested email him: [email protected]
Top whatever or so of 2011 in no particular order:
Favorite live sets in Boston:
-A multitude of SKIMASK sets
-A multitude of Fat History Month sets
-Ga’an (from Chicago) at Problemhouse- (July 24th)
-Nu Sensae (from Vancouver) at Gay Gardens – (June 23rd)
-Headwar (from France) at Gay Gardens – (March 30th)
-Animal Hospital Ensemble at MassART Pozen Center – (December 4th)
-Hunnie Bunnies at Problemhouse after Allston DIY fest – (June 23rd)
Favorite 4 albums I heard:
Gay Beast – “To Smithereens” (Skin Graft Records)This criminally overlooked trio from Minnesota dropped this amazing album back in March and then sadly went on indefinite hiatus. Frantically whacked-out and deconstructed Devo-meets-Beefheart compositions are held together by the assertive crooning of some sort of pop mastermind. This is the most fucked up music that will inevitably get stuck in your head.
Psychic Paramount – “II” (No Quarter)
A perfect capturing of probably one of the best sounding live bands I’ve ever seen. Relentless instrumental psych-rock of pure power. Original, impressive, and LOUD.
Wume – “Distance” (Rotted Tooth Records/Catholic Tapes)
Chicago drums and synth duo making minimal-kraut jams that I’ve found myself always in the mood for. Super pleasant and super cool.
Fat History Month – “Fucking Despair” (Sophomore Lounge Records)
The realest of all deals, this is Boston’s subtle finest.
Favorite Reissue/Favorite “thee Oh Sees” release of the Year:
OCS – Songs about Death & Dying Vol. 3In addition to releasing a double-album singles collection, two killer LPs that almost made my top four list, and probably some other limited shit off my radar, America’s arguably greatest rock band also had this early recording sneakily reissued this month on Rotted Tooth recordings. Mostly solo bedroom recordings by John Dwyer with a few guests, this creepy folk record sounds much different than the loud and raucous full-band the project eventually evolved into. Spooky, gentle, and fucking great.
Boston Personality of the Year/Top Shrimp:
I don’t think I’ll ever meet another person who could make such an impact so quickly on a ‘scene’ and its local vernacular as Frank Hurricane did in the past half a year he’s been living in Boston at the “holy” Whitehaus of Jamaica Plain. Living up to his name, the ultra-positive musician blew into my life sometime this summer with an enthusiasm for meeting people, witnessing music, playing songs, and making things HAPPEN that I can’t imagine him letting up for a second. The feeling around Frank is one of “Life is THE holy party and not only is everyone invited, they are already THERE!” Thankfully, this penchant for living is backed up with sheer talent, and you can check out the “Hurricanes of Love” bandcamp for proof, which is only one of at least four musical projects I know him to be a part of. Likewise, Frank’s momentum culminated at the end of November with the tour kickoff for his duo with Adam Foam, “Knight Howls.” Taking place at the abandoned bear cages in Franklin Park in Jamaica Plain, Frank helped to assemble over a dozen completely acoustic acts in the powerless space for the show, and it went off without a single hitch. It’s not often that you can get a crowd of over sixty or so people to gather in the cold outside on a weeknight, but with their set, Knight Howls also got almost every single one of their spectators HOWLING and YELLING at the top of their lungs. Energy creation like that doesn’t come your way every day.
Personal Boston Moment of the Year:
The Arrests at Occupy Boston on October 11th
No matter how you personally feel about the Occupy movement and its beliefs, there’s no denying that its story arc and the reactions to it says something. On October 11th, when the occupation in Dewey Square grew in size very quickly and out of space necessity expanded into the Rose Kennedy Greenway a block away, the second camp was declared illegal and shut down by the city while “Camp 1” was left standing. It seems that on the surface the state is reasonable and accommodating for allowing the protest to even occur in the first place, despite the protestors “misbehavior” for expanding into a new area. However, in light of the fact that the Greenway was the most logical and least antagonizing place for the occupation to move into, and anywhere the protesters camped could be declared illegal and wiped out at a moments notice, the arrests also illustrate the unnerving fact that in 2011 we have the “right” to “protest”…it just has to be on a small, manageable level. When the police arrived to shut down the encampment, it didn’t feel like the arrival of a small army, it was, and likewise the occupation revealed a militaristic infrastructure ready to act at any moment within our society. Within minutes, a perimeter was set and you were either in the area you could be arrested or you were in an area where you couldn’t tell what was going on inside the greenway, and within an hour of the police’s arrival anything within the park was either in a paddy wagon or dump truck. Witnessing the arrests that night hammered home that any sort of major act against our modern state can and will probably be silenced, and the people that are doing the silencing will do it in a way that makes them look good for doing so in the morning. Likewise, two months later on December 10th, just as the news story was getting redundant for the public’s attention, Camp 1 was similarly cleared away with little hubbub. Call me a pessimist, but unfortunately the feeling I took from these “growing” movements of the past year isn’t one of hope towards optimistic change looming on the horizon, but one of dread towards the continual revealing of a terrifying social stasis we seem to be living in.