jason (FMA Admin)
jason on 11/11/2009 at 01:48PM
Recent WFMU live guests Static Static and Wizzard Sleeve are on to something. It's psychedelic, with definte punk energy, darkly dance-able in that it incorporates synth and a drum machine, but with sharp edges. Edge, yeah, that's the word... It's also remeniscent of French Glue Wave, and we'll get to some of that later.
Static Static spent their formative years as a duo, just John Henry and MissMassDestruction, out in New Orleans with peers like Quintron and Miss Pussycat. They added drummer Lesley (from the Red Aunts!) when they moved to the city of LA post-Katrina. The hurricane had destroyed their home and almost all their equipment. Fortunately, The Edge of U2 was there to lend a helping hand. "The normally soft-spoken guitarist, 44, grows passionate when he talks about Katrina's impact and his efforts to help with Music Rising, which he organized along with Gibson Guitar, the Guitar Center Music Education Foundation and the MusicCares Foundation" quoth USA Today...(anybody seen It Might Get Loud?). Anyway... this program was willing to help Static Static even though they weren't stereotypical New Orleans music, and the geetar center gift certificate went towards a pa system, a drum machine, and a mini kaos pad among other effects that define the band's distinct sound.
Wizzard Sleeve may not have experienced the same natural disaster as their friends in Static Static, but these "confederate glue-wave goth 'tards" (their words not mine) do have a song called "Alabama's Doomed" about their home state. This term "Glue Wave" seems to have originated from France, to describe a style of dark lo-fi punk infused with synth, drum machine or other electronics to fix up any cracks in the sonic spectrum.Here's Wizzard Sleeve's set from Michael Goodstein's Choking on Cufflinks program, and more glue-wave sounds from Belgium's Kania Tieffer and two actual French artists The Feeling of Love, and Crash Normal, can be heard after the jump
The Feeling of Love:
And here's a great artictle on French Glue Wave from Victim of Time, tracing its roots back to the 90s in France, and back further to the psychedelic genre-meldings of the 60s and 70s, with lotsa good links (this article came out around the time of, and may have been inspired by an excellent French punk compilation on S-S Records called Tete de Bebe).
Many of these bands incorporate some element of American blues into their sound, both in terms of feel and sometimes even instrumentation, the harmonica in that Crash Normal song has definite blues connotations. So it somehow makes sense for bands coming out of places like Louisianna and Alabama to be carrying the torch of glue wave in illuminating new directions. Meanwhile, labels from electrified blues's home-base of Chicago are lending a hand in getitng the music out there. The new Static Static album Psychic Eyes is available from Tic Tac Totally, and Wizzard Sleeve's Make The World LP was just released on HoZac (the label that coined the term "Glue Wave")
If you're lookin for more, there's a killer Static Static/Wizzard Sleeve split 7'' on Jeth-Row Records. Cover art for that (pictured above) was made by Keenan Marshall Keller, who's done a lot of amazing art for Static Static and other bands, and I highly recommend checking out his flickr profile. It includes some mutagentic from a zine put out by Drippy Bone Books, featuring John Henry's interviews with artists like Quintron, Bare Wires, King Khan & BBQ, Jacuzzi Boys, Lamps and more. John Henry also passed along a copy of this compilation featuring music from more like-mindeds.