Europa, that tarnished old beauty of a ballroom off of Manhattan Avenue, added old world charm to the first night of the Northside Festival with its black croc walls and decaying gilt touches, the perfect backdrop for a night of dark splendor.
C. Spencer Yeh, aka Burning Star Core, provided the experimental noise portion of the evening, and opted not to play on the stage, instead magnetizing the early crowd from his corner spot on the floor. Yeh stirred up varying degrees of intensity with improvisational sounds on various knobs and above all, his electric violin, unleashing ambient drones, curious, fractal blips and resonating strings of strident sighs between specs of void. By conjuring visions of a lonely, outer planetary walk, it was easy to lose yourself, yet it was also hard to look away from the master at work. Ah, comforting delirium.
White Ring, as always, treated the crowd to another kind of intensity with their strobe-lit set of distorted trance, chill core dirge and sonic pathology,
Kendra Malia’s shrieks and rapturous, languid whispers bringing on the otherworldly ambience that play so well against Bryan Kurkamilis’s massive, gritty beats and razor sharp synth grooves.
The crowd did dance.
Photos by Zabatay