Sunday, February 7, 2010

I want to kick off this blog with a post about a guy who I have been listening to a lot recently. His name is Christopher Riggs. He plays guitar. You can glimpse his stuff here.
Riggs and Hall (Trauma) in Cincinnati at the Art Damage Lodge

Here are some other chunks/ slabs/ fragments of his: brainwashed, dead in michigan side A, side B.

Here is a review of the Dead in Michigan tape: Ear Conditioned Nightmare.
Henry (the guy who runs ECN) writes about Riggs quite a bit. His ear is frightening and his coverage is definitely equivocal in the best sense of haze.

John Olson on Chris Riggs:
a brief history of the ax=6-string jump: d. bailey - dancehall jazzbox player from the jump heard webern and got it in his idea box that he could get the same timbre fx (=constructing a melody by switching instruments every note) by treating harmonics, fretted notes, open strings all equal and then lays a slab o anton's trichords over top. killer. joe morris up next. does the opposite. total post-bop style. only fretted notes. staying in one left-hand position = gradual timbre changes within the tone-row. two mugs on opposites side o the same wavelength. outta they mindz. keith "fancy a hunder?" rowe comes along and fucks it up. disregards technique, says "fuck you" to the paradigm set up by d. bailey and joe "joe" morris, and opens the door for hundreds of fuckin copycats who love buying fx pedals on ebay. bullshit but it had to happen. looked like it was time to say r.i.p. to the 6-string. nothin new outta that mugg. then comes along chris "nacho" riggs. thinks he can resurrect that dead horse with an fx pedal-less 2-string (side a has just 2 strings on it?!!?!) guitar all the while applying lachenmann's obsession for extendo technique toward the goal of sounding like a dillo tape loop. root scoot

- olzone

Personally, I am a sucker for the searching/ going no-where absence of epic sounds that guys like Riggs and Heath Moreland (more on him later) go for. I think what "olzone" is smacking towards up there is that Riggs does not use effects pedals. His sound is refreshingly free of the oceans of reverb that so many are drenching their shit in these days. It comes at you literally without delay, it is strangely present for a drone from wierdo twangs-ville, dutsy robot pony-ride down to yesterday. He is not fucking around while he fucks around.

Riggs' label is called holy cheever church. It doesn't stop at Riggs sounds. He puts out heaps of metallic medicinal offerings. Here are a few that I think rise to the top: Ben Hall, Lifetones, Skingraft, Analog Concept .
Riggs sometimes plays in Graveyards, a Michigan based experimental/ new music/ free jazz group consisting of Ben Hall, Hans Buetow, and John Olson.
Graveyards @
Poster (above) ... see more olson artwork at art by john olson... which is connected to the hub label of the Michigan experimental scene of which Christopher Riggs is a part: American Tapes
Movie of Hall and Olson (below)

But you probably know about Graveyards already if you are here reading this.

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