I went to the Chapel Performance Space in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood. I generally never know what I’ll be getting into; the nature of the Wayward Music Series is explorative and new. I’d never heard of any of the performers – David Watson and John Krausbauer headlined the bill; Amelia Coulter opened the evening, and Bill Horist played in-between. The showed promised drone and improvisation, so I’m all in.
Setting up the stage, Amelia carefully set up the microphone in front of the bowl of water atop the stool. It had to be just right. Why? I didn’t know; I had no idea what I was getting into. Could the bowl of water perform somehow?
She proceeded to commence a Gregorian chant, just like you hear at a 10th Century European abbey. But then, she put a short trombone to her lips; the chant forced enough air into the trombone to provide a drone, which she could then modulate with the trombone slider. And still, you can hear the chant, though muffled. Captivating!
A Gregorian chant fucked up by a trombone. The bowl of water was ambiance?
Aha! In sort of the third act, she plunged the bell into the bowl of water, continuing with the drone/chant. This provided a muffling, a gurgling, and the sound of brass vibrating against glass, and that was muffled and garbled.
Pretty cool stuff. I really enjoyed the sounds and enjoyed the visuals.
I don’t see any YT of her performing this – is was probably a brand new piece. If you’re struggling to remember the Gregorian chant, and have 6 hours to kill, there’s this.
And if you’re not familiar with the trombone, there is the Japanese punk band Futomomo Satisfaction
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