[nextpage title=”Intro” ] Ever since its inception few years ago, Boston Fuzzstival (organized by Illegally Blind / Jason Trefts) provided stage to countless psychedelic/space rock/garage acts out of Boston/New England. This year’s edition of Fuzzstival will feature non-psych acts (Oompa, What Cheer? Brigade, former of which is a local rapper and latter is a brass band) as well as artists from outside NE (Montreal-hailing Corridor).
To celebrate 2018 edition of Fuzzstival we put together the playlist of acts performing this year – featuring both our own footage and footage taken by others! We also compiled some reading on the history of Fuzzstival, so dive in!
[/nextpage] [nextpage title=”Thursday”] Lina Tullgren
Lina Tullgren is from Southern Maine just over the border of the northernmost seacoast of New Hampshire. It’s an unexpected location for artistic incubation, but if you grow up anywhere surrounded by family and friends and weirdos interacting at all times with their own interpretations of creative output, osmosis is bound to occur. Shifting in trainings and traditions, the 23 year old eventually found herself a voice with the electric guitar, uniquely flavored and shaped from the many years of fiddle lessons and classical technique. The shifts in genre and in instrumentation are stark, but important. Lina’s morphing interaction with music has mirrored a growing determination to harness her ability to melodically and lyrically express complex emotions.
Lisa/Liza is the project of Portland, Maine’s Liza Victoria. This ethereal-sounding folk singer has an appropriately hazy mystique about her, offering little more in biographical detail than where she calls home. We know there’s more to the story, but it’s not important. Her gentle songs have such a fragile quality that they just barely make it out of her body, and the reward when they do is high.
Improviser, composer, and songwriter who uses guitar, pedals, the tenor banjo, the computer, the synthesizer and the voice.
Every Boston band starts in a basement, but not every Boston band hopes to leave one. Bad History Month, a glum anti-folk act that formed there back in 2007, has never been concerned with fame. For starters, the band’s music uses a combination of ribald jokes, effervescent self-deprecation and blunt existentialism focused on understanding oneself from the inside out in service of isolation — assuming the position of the middle school loner in the back of a classroom.
Groovy as hell. Like The Velvet Underground jamming with The Dandy Warhols in a space shuttle. Trippy in a mind-twisting way.
A heady new project from Herbcraft’s Matt Lajoie, Ash & Herb pairs his psychedelic haze with partner in crime Ash (singularly named it appears), who provides some haunting vocals and lycergic instrumentation of her own. Not wholly divorced from Herbcraft’s earlier works, before they hit a heavier rock vein, the album wafts in on a puff of shamanistic smoke and settles down to craft temples in the woods. Picking out half ragas, divining rain spirits and then sublimating into a fine ether; the pair have captured themselves in some real improvisational glory. They catch the same spectral breath as Charlambides or Pocahaunted before them, finding solace in their own sense of time and place.
Raven Sings the Blues
your favorite monogamous ensemblè
[/nextpage] [nextpage title=”Friday” ] The Monsieurs
Boston’s next level – garage punk Guru’s The Monsieurs. Out of the ashes of two legendary Boston bands Tunnel Of Love, and Fuzzy; The Monsieurs are known for the uncanny ability to make any persons head bang into a furious whiplash with simple rock and roll grooviness. Backed by two blonde bombshells, Hilken Mancini and Erin King assist frontman Andy Macbain in leading the Monsieurs through an unleashing indictable rockin’ rollin’ assault with sharp aesthetics, and aggression rooted in a keen pop sensibility making this platter just palatable enough for those with even the easiest listenings of taste.
Montreal’s Corridor take familiar elements but assemble and scramble them in a way you may not have heard before. There’s a twin-guitar interplay that recalls the late-’70s mutant new wave of XTC, The dB’s and The Feelies, with a sense of melody that shows a love of ‘60s psychedelia and sunshine pop. Putting a hometown twist on things, Corridor sing entirely en français.
Nice Guys are noisy – and that is the point. As a band that embodies the grungy garage-rock that is a key part of Allston’s music scene, they are most at home playing in a musty, dank basement. However, they somewhat recently left that basement when they had the opportunity to open for Californian surf-punk band Fidlar at the Sinclair in Cambridge, proving their fuzzy stoner sound has a place on a larger stage. Though they are happy with their success, Nice Guys plan to maintain their integrity as a scuzzy, basement band, enjoying most the feedback they get from enthusiastic audiences.
Sound of Boston
Rick from Pile
punk pop tunes made by some gay punks from massachusetts
Who TRIM? Who you? Well, we seen TRIM a few times about town (Boston, disclosure for our international reader base), let me see 1st at Wicked Mess, 2nd at Porchfest, and most recently in the confines of the Allston basement conveniently named Make Out Point. This duo cuts above the rest, or rather, flows, because of their unique arrangement – drums, and various noise configurations, that is improvisational, within the deep realm of that which I am heavily naïve. So it is the excitement of seeing something different, something not boring, actually really involved or perhaps extraordinarily loose? In a world of boring “Rock” bands, TRIM might get called out for being too weird, but this is not trolling, at least to my brittle ears.
Kids Like You & Me
La Neve is dense electronic pop music with an explicit message. La Neve is also sometimes known as Joey La Neve DeFrancesco, the guitarist and main music composer in rock group Downtown Boys, and producer in dance duo Malportado Kids. With La Neve, DeFrancesco acts as producer and primary vocalist for the first time. La Neve takes some of the same political messaging as Downtown Boys – decrying decaying working standards, condemning artists who uphold the status-quo, and proclaiming an urgent need for action – but puts it through a deadpan dance filter.
Don Giovanni Records
Out of speakers came noise and out of noise came RICK RUDE. A four-membered creature whose tattered robe, four-string guitar, and sand-filled shoes are surrounded by a haze of sweet smoke and empty beer cans, thrashes about with a charismatic enthusiasm matched only by its lethargic demeanor, speaking fluently in the cryptic languages of dreams, love, and ennui. It inhabits a dark cave on the mountainside of truth, carefully furnished with dismantled electronics, books on meditation, and warped records of Guided By Voices, Built to Spill, and Cheap Trick. A nocturnal creature, Rick Rude feasts on mystical fungi, boredom, mushy guitar riffs, and the delicacy of the human soul.
Dream Punk band based out of Somerville, MA.
Over the past few years, Providence’s noise music legacy has been funneled into a new generation. Ex-Fort Thunder stalwarts Lightning Bolt along with the likes of Doomsday Student and Minibeast have been carrying the proverbial torch for a while now, and due to their consistent brilliance their influence has resonated with a youthful wave of bands. One of those bands is Hairspray Queen, an act featuring Lovesick members Nathan Thao Phrathep on guitar and Joshua Rodriguez keeping it together on drums, ex-I Eat Rocks vocalist Ben Bigelow on bass, and Ian Benoit on guitar while frontman Raymond Fernandez howls distorted vocals.
musique coquin rok en rolle
What Cheer? Brigade is a brass band with approximately 18 active members from Providence, Rhode Island, United States. They perform using exclusively brass instruments, saxophones, and drums in a variety of world styles, such as Indian Bollywood music, Balkan brass, klezmer, as well as American styles such as hip hop, rock, and New Orleans second line music.
Olden Yolk is a New York-based group whose penchant for dystopian folk, abstract poeticism, and motorik rhythms have enveloped them in a sound uniquely of-the-moment yet simultaneously time-tested. The project is led by songwriters, vocalists, and multi-instrumentalists Shane Butler and Caity Shaffer, whose interlaced vocals are found guiding each composition on their enlivening self-titled debut. The project was initially conceived in 2012 by Butler as an outlet for one-off songs and visual art while touring and releasing albums with the band Quilt (Mexican Summer). Following the release of a split-record with Weyes Blood in 2014, Olden Yolk became a collaborative entity.
Mr. Airplane Man is Margaret on guitar and Tara on drums. We are a mishmash of deep love for Mississppi hill country blues, Memphis weirdo rocknroll, drony VU and Stooges, and Boston (our hometown) garage beat and pop wonderment.
Indie/Jazz outfit based in Boston.
Anna Fox Rochinski of Quilt
Oompa is a nationally-renowned, Boston-born, poet, educator, and lyricist who is forever representing the queer, black, orphaned, hood kids an’ nem.
Mariam Saleh began performing under the heady moniker of BONG WISH in the Massachusetts of yesteryear. Drawing from British folk, Ween, and fantasy, Bong Wish skews to the far out lyrically, encouraging universal love and inner peace. The debut EP presents a patchouli-scented fantasia of pure, unsolicited rage. Mostly home-recorded, the eponymous EP sees Mariam and her mystical cohorts explore different moods, styles and vibes across four tracks, ranging from lush string arrangements and exotic flutes to shimmering guitars and earthy percussion.
Carinae is an unstable star in the constellation that is the Western Massachusetts music scene. Three part vocal harmonies orbit around patchwork guitar and keyboard textures laced with driving rhythms. Lyrics that bring you home and stretch you out. Star gazing in an open field.
Formed in October 2015 while attending Berklee College of Music, Lady Pills have a singular yet multi-faceted voice. Informed by their time in the Boston DIY community, Lady Pills’ unique perspective on the scene, social responsibility and life in the 21st century is felt in their music and at their shows.
Babe City Records
You can’t erase every trace of a scar, but you can reclaim it as it fades. The pattern becomes a familiar shadow, a blotch-like line from a damaging event that softens over time, a battle wound to remind you that you survived. The scar is semi-permanent, emphasis on the semi. And sometimes, if you have the energy, that scar can be the motivation you needed to prevent other scars from forming in the future. That’s a process that’s becoming increasingly familiar for Olivia West, the vocalist and primary songwriter of local act Edge Petal Burn.
On the band’s long-awaited debut LP, Glass Cannon, she confronts multiple traumatic events from her past with unflinching confidence, the type of delivery that uses stoic lyrics to straighten her posture. Along with guitarists Lea Jaffe and Huxley Rittman, bassist Nicholas Owen, and drummer Jeff Crenshaw, she’s able to use Edge Petal Burn as a powerful outlet to overcome personal and communal struggles.
[nextpage title=”Further Reading / Fuzzstival History” ] Fuzzstival 8/10/13 (Stompbox Sonic)
Review: Boston Fuzzstival (8/10/13) (Kids Like You & Me)
Boston Fuzz-stival 2014 (Ghost Box Orchestra)
Boston Fuzzstival 2015 Dates and Artwork Unveiled (DO617)
Review: Boston Fuzzstival 2015 at the Middle East Downstairs 8-08-2015 (Teenage Riot TV)
What To See At The Fuzzstival, The Annual Psychedelic And Garage Rock Shindig (WBUR Artery)
On a Different Note:
- Post-Independence Marathon – New Music from Rhode Island
- Mixtape – Bands of Hassle Fest 7
- Download Vault – Boston Edition – Aeon, Koala, Lion Cub, Walter Sickert & The Army Of Broken Toys
- Guest Mix – J Moss (The Modern Folk of America)
- Podcast – Double Mega! From Bridges & Squares (w/ Radio Control and Alchemilla)