Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Fiona Dickinson / The Break-Ups / Stargrazer / Families - LIVE March 13 at B414

Sunday March 13, Stargrazer (my solo project) will have the distinct honor of opening for Bellaire, MI-based singer/songwriter Fiona Dickinson, who is making her first Lansing appearance at the free-thinking art spot Basement 414.  Here's a map to B414.  You can get there by walking to the end of Jay Street, a half-block long street that runs off of southbound Cedar St., behind The Nuthouse Bar.  You'll know you're there when you see a tall brick chimney (however I suggest parking on Michigan Ave. or in one of the lots nearby, as Jay Street itself is a tow-away zone.)

Dickinson's debut album, Duende, can be streamed or downloaded here, and it is truly a gorgeous and emotionally evocative set of songs displaying her incredible range and songsmithing abilities.  Here's a short bio I clipped from her bandcamp page:

Fiona Dickinson is a British singer/songwriter currently residing in Michigan. Taking a cue from Bjork-esque vocalists, as well as adding elements of shoegaze, old time folk, and lush string arrangements, Fiona creates a beguiling dark sound. While the instrumentation of reverberated guitars, violins, and cellos is invariably complex and often provide unexpected hooks that draw a listener in, Fiona's most affecting instrument is her voice. Rich and mature, she drives it fluidly between sweetly breathed coos and full-throated wails. Her live shows are intimate and deep, begging the undivided attention of the listener. You can feel her voice pushing back the demons as she digs deep into a growl, and then angelically welcome in the healing process with the voice of tranquility. 

I'm truly looking forward to seeing her live performance, as I find the album quite bewitching: sonically timeless and yet very of-the-moment with current Michigan independent music.

Also playing Sunday night will be my labelmates at GTG Records, The Break-Ups.  Led by Timmy Rodriguez, the Break-Ups have the ability to shapeshift from Beatles-meets-Velvet Underground noisy pop to thrilling forays into 90s-style alt rock that hits the sweet spot.  They're one of Lansing's best kept secrets and put on a hell of a show.

The fourth band on the bill, Families, hail from the Detroit area, however a google search of "Families" and "Detroit" proved fruitless, so if anyone can provide a link to them I'd really like to check them out.  I've heard good -- albeit vague -- things about them, so they'll be the surprise treat for the evening. 

As for Stargrazer, I'll be debuting a half-electric, half-acoustic set -- bringing out all my toys for a live one-man-band debut that probably owes more to Can and The Mountain Goats than to more polished loopmeisters like Andrew Bird.  I'm pretty excited for this!  The electric set will consist of a single song that I've been calling "Thing," followed by a set of new songs and old favorites on my trusty Ferrington acoustic bass with some witchy atmospherics thrown in.  If you've seen my set before, this will be something else entirely, the culmination of several of my lo-tech experiments of the past coupled with my purchase of a decidedly hi-tech Boss loop station.  I am having so much fun with it!

Doors are at 8 PM, and the show will probably kick off around 9 PM.  There is no charge at the door, and this is an ALL AGES show.  Bands will have music and other merchandise on sale, and it'd be great of you if you could bring a donation to help cover the travel expenses of the bands from out of town -- I'm sure they'll pass a hat or something.  Also, B414 is a spacious, inviting, and acoustically pleasant art gallery, so please drag your friends with you for an evening of music they won't regret.  

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