Improvizone comes to a large DJ booth downstairs in a bar in Farringdon.
The above ambient music technologists will join forces for the tenth in our series of improvised drinking establishment gigs. Which is to say the gig, the drinking and the establishment will all be improvised. Aha! And on account of its number 10, we will call it... the deca-gig! Yeah!
This one is happening at a buzzing venue, new to us (in both ways), by the name and address of Ember, 99-100 Turnmill St, EC1M 5QP (map here). Transport for London serve this location particularly well, with Farringdon tube and rail station right next door. So close, you can hear fare-dodgers being arrested, ticket barriers slamming against unsuspecting tax-splaying law-licking oystercard-holders who've been quietly losing three pounds fifty every time they swipe themselves up in the office lift, and automated platform announcers telling their increasingly mumerous audience that a good service is running on the Circle Line. So you come out of the tube, turn left and you're looking at Ember. We'll be downstairs.
Os and I have just been there to check out the playing area and it's quite a bit bigger than I remember when the owner, Danny, showed me a few weeks ago. It's also more visible than I thought. Being the DJ booth, it has stereo phono inputs on the walls to their house PA, which we will probably make use of to spread our nice ambient textures and crunchy beats around the place. It's just occurred to me that they could transmit the sound to the upstairs bar. A carefully-placed room-mic is currently sitting in a think-bubble above my head.
About the chaps playing... if you've been tuned into Improvizone for a while you'll have seen Os and Mike featuring at several gigs and in many downloads over the year. This time, we look forward to a guest appearance by Michael Peters, joining us while he visits the UK for a looping gig in Norwich, at which Mike, Os and I will also be playing as a trio.
That's Michael's MySpace page I linked to there. Have a listen to Stretched Landscape, or even 42 Guitar Miniatures. Imagine a mix of those, blended with Darkroom-y looped ambience and distinctive Bearpark timbre, with some not-massively-energetic electronic drums fed through a collection of low-tech effects that weigh a little bit too much. Notice there's no bass player at this one. This is partly intentional, in preparation for the Norwich gig where Mike, Os and I will be doing a set without one.
Offer as I might a clue to what we're going to sound like, in truth I have no idea how this will turn out. Playing downstairs, completely invisibly and inaudibly to anyone in the main bar, except when they dip in and out of (my euphemism of the day) the excretariums, could mean we pass the entire evening unseen by anyone. Some nice-looking posters on a couple of doors to alert people of our nice-sounding music could be the answer, provided they don't offend the management (it often does). I'll see how I get on with photoshopping a couple of those.