During the recent MusicFest NW in Portland, we put our heads together with friend and longtime MFNW producer Trevor Solomon to curate “Room 205 Live.” After filming more than 30 episodes and 90 videos in a tiny 15×20-foot rehearsal space, we wanted to have a go at collaborating in front of a live audience. Held at venerable downtown venue Ted’s, (formerly Berbati’s Pan), the night showcased five of our favorite past collaborators from Room 205, including Blouse, Crystal Antlers, Craft Spells, Tropic of Cancer and Chelsea Wolfe.
Based in Portland, Oregon, Blouse is comprised of members Charlie Hilton, Patrick Adams, Jacob Portrait, and Paul Roper. Here we find them swooning elegantly through the standout track, “Videotapes,” from the 2011 debut album, BLOUSE, on Captured Tracks. Wildly pitch-shifted and wonderfully out-of-whack, this song is near-perfect in almost every imaginable way. Enjoy.
We’re excited to present this week’s episode of Room 205 featuring Chelsea Wolfe. After filming more than 30 episodes and 90 videos in a tiny 15×20-foot rehearsal space, we put our heads together with friend and longtime MFNW producer Trevor Solomon to curate “Room 205 Live” held at venerable downtown venue Ted’s, (formerly Berbati’s Pan) during this year’s MusicfestNW. The night featured some of our favorite Room 205 collaborators, including Chelsea Wolfe, Craft Spells, Crystal Antlers, Tropic of Cancer and Blouse. In this episode, Chelsea Wolfe performs “Noorus,” a track from her first LP, The Grime and The Glow.
Northern California native Chelsea Wolfe’s sound is best described with broad juxtaposing strokes: elemental and intense, ancient yet modern, radiant, dark, intimate and expansive. Hues of black metal and deep blues inform her ever-evolving electric folk. Wolfe’s voice haunts and soothes, revealing the unlikely truths and beauty hidden in life’s darker corners. Whether stripped bare or fully backed, Wolfe and company carry a serious heaviness of sound offset by that ever-present counterweight: transcendence of spirit.
This week’s episode of Room 205 filmed during MFNW in Portland, OR, features an exclusive first performance of “More Alone”, the new track from Los Angeles-based Tropic of Cancer. Tomorrow, an alternate live version of the track will release as a split 12” with HTRK on Ghostly International’s Part-Time Punks Radio Sessions series.
Tropic Of Cancer is the solo project of Camella Lobo. Though her music has been labeled gothic, shoegaze and drone pop, Lobo’s take on her influences is anything but nostalgic. Tropic Of Cancer has managed to imbue its own elusive gaze and craft a strangely beautiful and intoxicating sound in the wake of its predecessors. Formerly a duo with minimal electronic artist Silent Servant (Juan Mendez), Tropic Of Cancer has been stoking a slow-burning cult following since its first EP (The Dull Age) on Berlin-based label, Downwards in 2009. The Sorrow of Two Blooms, an EP released in 2011 on UK imprint Blackest Ever Black, catapulted the band into the underground spotlight. Since then, Lobo has released a handful of acclaimed recordings on Mannequin Records, Sleeperhold Publications and Ghostly International. Lobo performs live with assistance from Taylor Burch of the band DVA DAMAS.
To sum it up, this song rules. Tropic of Cancer’s first full-length album is due early 2013 on Blackest Ever Black.
In this week’s episode of Room 205, we present Craft Spells performing “Love Well Spent” at last month’s Room 205 Live showcase at MusicFest NW. After filming more than 30 episodes and 90 videos in a tiny 15×20-foot rehearsal space, we wanted to have a go at collaborating in front of a live audience. We put our heads together with friend and longtime MFNW producer Trevor Solomon to curate “Room 205 Live” held at venerable downtown venue Ted’s, (formerly Berbati’s Pan). The night featured some of our favorite Room 205 visitors, including Craft Spells, Crystal Antlers, Tropic of Cancer, Chelsea Wolfe and Blouse.
Craft Spells began as the bedroom project of Justin Vallesteros. Holed up in his Stockton, CA home, rolling tape while winter beat the bushes outside, Vellesteros crafted a decidedly 80s strain of sentimental indie-pop; chiming guitars, atmospheric synths, and delicate drum-machines. Vallesteros now resides in Seattle and fronts a full band comprised of friends and serious shredders. They make records. They tour Europe. And they write very, very good songs. As we said in their previous Room 205 episode, if you love Felt, The Smiths, Echo & The Bunnymen, and the beautiful monotone drone of Ian Curtis, then Craft Spells might soon be your favorite nuevo-new romantics.
Last month while at MusicFest NW in Portland, we put our heads together with friend and longtime MFNW producer Trevor Solomon to curate “Room 205 Live.” After filming more than 30 episodes and 90 videos in a tiny 15×20-foot rehearsal space, we wanted to have a go at collaborating in front of a live audience. Held at venerable downtown venue Ted’s, (formerly Berbati’s Pan), the night showcased five featured artists from Room 205, including Crystal Antlers, Craft Spells, Tropic of Cancer, Chelsea Wolfe and Blouse. To document this very special night, we worked with director Greg Hunt, DP Greg Schmitt, and audio engineer Griffin Rodriguez. No overdubs, no second takes. 100% raw live weirdness.
For the next five weeks we’ll debut one performance per week from each Room 205 Live artist. Today’s premiere episode features a performance from Crystal Antlers, who originally visited Room 205 in 2010. The Room 205 Live showcase at MFNW marked the debut of the band’s new blazer, “Persephone.”
We hope you’ll enjoy watching our experiment as much as we’ve enjoyed making it. Huge thanks to the performing artists, MFNW and the good people of PDX, as well to production manager Nathan Ostrander, in-house engineer Dave Hite and booker Kenric Ashe at Ted’s.
The band closes out their Room 205 sessions with a punchy, improvised performance that totally rips.
With vast appreciation and excitement, we present the final installment of our Room 205 episode with I Break Horses. For this punchy, improvised live performance of “Load Your Eyes,” director Forrest Borie employs a top secret animated screen-grab technique to accentuate drummer Fredrik Balck’s glitchy beats and the robust, off-the-cuff elegance of singer Maria Linden’s remarkable voice.
Special thanks goes to I Break Horses for making this episode of Room 205 possible. Despite all being ill with the flu and suffering an unexpected summer heat wave, their goodwill and resolve won out. Thanks also to director Forrest Borie, set designer Tamarra Younis, dp Jeffrey Peters, audio engineer J. Clark, camera operator Conor Simpson, and producer/camera operator Arlie Carstens. In every sense of the word, this episode of Room 205 was truly an inspired collaborative creation.
Look for a new episode of Room 205 next month.
In their second installment of Room 205, Sweden’s I Break Horses conjure an ebullient sea of shimmering synths and insistent beats in this exceptionally intimate live performance.
Today we premiere the second installment of Room 205 with special guest I Break Horses. Inspired by the stark intimacy and rising euphoria of “Hearts,” set designer Tamarra Younis turned Room 205 into a soft cocoon of billowing muslin gauze. Thereafter, director Forrest Borie shot the entire performance through dozens of tiny glory holes cut into the fabric. But why? Well, as directors go, Borie’s a bit of a peeping tom. He wanted to capture I Break Horses doing what they do best—getting lost in the moment. The resulting video offers a beautiful, glowing snapshot of the band in all its blissed out glory.
Look for the final I Break Horses x Room 205 performance, “Load Your Eyes,” to launch Monday, September 24th.