Constant audio innovators Matmos are releasing a new album, Ultimate Care II, that was completely sound-sourced from their washing machine. For the release, their label Thrill Jockey had me work with them to create a series of promotional portraits. I have worked with Drew and Martin before and they are (of course) extremely creative as well as easy to work with, so I was really excited about this shoot. We played with some of things and tried to create a mix of images that ranged from your normal “band photo” to ones that were a bit more oblique or playful. Pretty happy with how this came out, and can’t wait for the album to be out – it’s really good!
I spent a pleasant afternoon in Matmos’ Baltimore City studio, photographing them for a recent XLR8R piece on their studio, their gear, and their new album. A really interesting pair of artists, they explained some of their process and a lot of their gear to me, and they even demonstrated the basic concept of how they came out with the concepts and raw material for their new album – having a friend of theirs undergo sensory deprivation and describing the music that he heard (pictured above). A really cool shoot.
Awesome show, from beginning to end. 3 very different, yet complimentary Baltimore music groups, all on one bill! A great weekend for the Ottobar, who also hosted a sold out Wye Oak show the following night… anyway…
I have seen Matmos several times, and they are always different. This night, they chose to create a droning/grooving sort of atmosphere with a Caribbean (to my uninformed ears) feeling type of beat, very noddable and swayable. One of their songs got pretty minimal industrial, again to my uniformed ears, and I would SWEAR that on one song they used the same sample as Ministry does on one of their “Land of Rape And Honey” era records… but maybe I am just a goth.
Celebration remains one of my absolute favorite bands to see live in Baltimore… I love their old material and their newer stuff is growing on me more and more now that I have seen it played live a few times. Their set has morphed into only having one or two songs from the “The Modern Tribe” era, and they are still a treat to watch.
Dan Deacon used this show to introduce his new five piece ensemble (who I have posted about here recently) , and I really enjoyed the additional instrumentation. I think it worked best on the newer songs, ones that I assume were written for this group, but even on the classic Deacon songs, I think they added alot, especially the dual percussion. Live drums really can create a feeling like nothing else. The crowd seemed to agree, they went CRAZY, which is too be expected, and it was a really really fun set. Somehow I managed to stick it out the whole time at the front… a bit of a while since I managed that, but I was having a blast!