Together Festival: Com Truise & Clark at Middle East | Cambridge, MA | May 20th, 2017
May
2017
20

TOGETHER FESTIVAL: COM TRUISE & CLARK



  • Date:Saturday, May 20, 2017
  • Venue:Middle East
  • Address:472 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139
  • Age:18+
  • Artists:Com Truise, Clark, Roland Tings
  • Promoters:Together Festival
  • Time:8:00 PM

Together Boston is an annual celebration of music, art and technology, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The festival was first held in February, 2010, with continually broadening scope of musical genres as well as a thorough exploration of the art and technology sectors.

Through a week-long series of educational and professional discussion panels, art installations, film screenings, and musical performances at venues around the Boston/Cambridge area, Together Boston attracts tens of thousands each May. Although historically based in Boston, the festival has found its footing across the Charles River in Central Square, Cambridge, Massachusetts and expects to be working closely with Cambridge City Hall in 2013.

In 2012, Together hosted musical artists such as Photek, RJD2, Mala,Todd Edwards, Dillon Francis, Nero, Phill Niblock, 6th Borough Project and more, while hosting film screenings for the Chemical Brothers movie Don’t Think, as well as the Electric Daisy Carnival documentary.

COM TRUISE

Com Truise is one of the many personas of producer and designer Seth Haley, born and raised in upstate New York and operating out of a 12’-overrun apartment in Princeton, New Jersey. An admitted synth obsessive, Com Truise is the maker of an experimental and bottom heavy style he calls “mid-fi synth-wave, slow-motion funk”.

Haley’s been making music on the side for roughly a decade—going through pseudonyms like toothbrushes (Sarin Sunday, SYSTM, Airliner)—first as a DJ, and currently, as an excavator of softer, window-fogging synth-wave.

While subliminally informed by both parental record collections and hints of faded electronics product design, Haley’s Com Truise project isn’t just nostalgia capitalization. There are fragments (read: DNA strands) of Joy Division, New Order, and the Cocteau Twins, but it’s like you’re hearing them through the motherboard of a waterlogged Xbox—demented and modern. He’s got a way of making familiar things sound beautifully hand-smeared.

The first Com Truise release was the Cyanide Sisters EP—distributed for free on the AMdiscs label—where mellow stone-outs like “Sundriped” and “Slow Peels” sat next to harder IDM bangers (“BASF Ace” and “IWYWAW”) and bumpy alt-funk trips (“Norkuy” and “Komputer”). After that came a single “Pyragony/Trypyra,” and a series of eclectic podcast mixes titled “Komputer Cast.” Now comfortably situated amidst the Ghostly roster, he’s prepping his next warped pillage, and hopefully not changing that name again.

CLARK

“Music is like sculpture. It’s like trying to capture a moment of ultimate momentum, and distill it forever”. – Clark, August 2014

‘Clark’, boldly eponymous, is the Warp experimentalist’s seventh album in 13 years? climaxing a narrative that commenced with ‘Clarence Park’, the first “Clark” attributed album ‘Body Riddle’, through the Yin and Yang of ‘Turning Dragon’ and ‘Iradelphic’, and finely honed through this year’s ‘Superscope’ EP and visually intense Phosphor live show.

This is where the sounds of the machine meet the sounds of the world. A protracted club experience distilled into a cinematic, immersive whole. Clark’s chiseled vision of techno contextualized for a postrave environment the clean, cold edges of technology eroded over time to produce raw, fascinating new textures.

These textures lay the foundations for a hugely kaleidoscopic listening experience filled with warmth. Memorable songwriting packed with melody and subtle, unpredictable shifts in mood? a finely balanced mix of electronic composition, heads down techno, human nature and the environment it was created in.

“I wanted to let the weather in with this album”, Clark explains. “It’s outward looking, it’s drenched in sounds of the outside world, sounds free from human intervention: branches crackling in the wind, storms brewing, the stillness of settling snow. It’s all in there, amongst the moreish crunch of industrial machinery”.

These real world elements offer a sense of a meditation that beckons the listener to leave human desires behind. A detailed field recording of boots in snow creeps into an echo of piano house on ‘Strength Through Fragility’, swallowing up the melancholy of the melody rather ruthlessly, teasing these things out of the listener as the track progresses. The essence of the new being carved from an unheard ancientness appears throughout ‘Clark’, a tactile interaction between alien elements creating something that would not have otherwise existed.

The machines hold their own against nature: ‘Banjo’ is a straight up MPC/synth funk jam played over three notes, the hypnotic arpeggios of ‘Unfurla’ are underpinned by a solid 4/4 kick drum, peakrave euphoria is captured in ‘There’s a Distance In You’. At its essence ‘Grit In The Pearl’ is more Berghain than Guggenheim a club banger, albeit in a parallel dimension filtered through the ‘Clark’ lens, lending new context to its spiralling rave chords.

The theme of reduction, a sculpture of sound, wins out in the end. Closing beatless piece ‘Everlane’ is a cathartic conclusion to ‘Clark’, the elements ultimately refined into timeless, ethereal melodies echoing into the ages:

“It straddles this fine line of being ultimate bliss and sadness at the same time. I find this emotional terrain compelling and keep on coming back to it. I need that epic sense of closure”.

‘Clark’ will be released by Warp Records on 3rd November 2014.