For context, read PRB Staffer Murray’s first article on New York Jamtronica.
People were flooding out of Stage 48. I went in–if someone was going to save us, I was not going to find him or her in the puke of people spreading across the street.
The venue was in fully lit reality-mode; the fantasy world of glowing balls levitating to loud music in the dark is over. My saviour was handing out flyers that said something-after-party-something. The flyer was Comic Sans-sketchy, but the quasi-spontaneity of the moment helped me ignore it.
We headed off to the deserted and dilapidated street to find this ‘after party’. As we approached the warehouse, we heard faint music.
There was a boarded-up window with a set of movable wooden stairs underneath it. This was either really good or really bad. Doubt was pretty useless, so we climbed up the stairs, slid the board over, paid our $5, got our wrist stamps.
A wooden structure covered a tunnel to the basement. Lights and music came from the dark dank below.
We explored the top level first. Behind the tunnel were some people dancing near a small DJ-stand. I recognized some of them from the Papadosio audience.
Past the makeshift-bar, I discovered a hallway with what seem like bedrooms. I got ushered back to the bar, which I suddenly realized was actually their kitchen.
The seats were lines of board hammered together. There was junk lying in the corners, paint splattered on the walls.
“You have no idea what you are about to witness,” someone told me.
But I did figure some things out.The “SCI” on the flyer stood for String Cheese Incident, a major player in the jam-band music scene. Jason Hann, who did a set in this Brooklyn warehouse-house, does “auxiliary precussion” for SCI. In 2006, the year he joined SCI, he joined with their drummer to start an improvise-only experimental electronic project called EOTO.
It was nearing 3am when we descended into the basement to hear Hann play.
There was a drum set and benches, but everything else was just dance floor.
The rest of the room was packed under the stairs: framed pictures, books and a little girl’s bicycle. The walls were covered in fresh paint.
The set began with some dubstep beats mixed with Hann’s high-hat pattering. Hann’s performance had just as much emphasis on jazz sounds (saxophone and cuts of deep jazz vocals) but with a more EDM feel (faster more upbeat sections of dupstep and house). Some transitions were glorious, with the audience cheering and yelling various expletives of encouragement. Other times, Hann would abruptly stop the beat to end a loop that had been developed, as if to remind us that it was improvised. Still, these gave rise to more expletives of encouragement.
The music is supposed to be heard and felt, not described. Next week, I’ll have a 8-track jam up for you all to listen to, and hopefully that will help convey the experience more clearly.