While this was the last show that Lampo would be putting on at the 6Odum, it was my first time due to the fact that I had no idea of its existence until a few weeks ago. Apparently, this was the 100th show they put on with the first starting back 10 years ago.
Walking up to the building I had no idea if the door, old brown paint chipped and weathered, was even open. Not the most inviting, 6Odum with its white and grey painted cinder block walls looks more like a prison or an old factory from the outside. Inside, the musty smell of a dusty record store permeates, and as I walked up a couple of steps toward a small table illuminated with sparse clip lamps (which is apparently the house favorite for lighting) I started to wonder where I was and what I was doing here. I guess the first time you visit any place you feel a bit uncomfortable, the new sights and smells all being processed at once. It was very dark inside the larger performance room, which was filled with folding chairs and people lined against each wall.
After a brief introduction, Philip Jeck took a seat behind 2 suitcase turntables and proceeded to extract the most hauntingly beautiful ghosts from old crackling vinyl. Using what sounded like a sampling device, Jeck layered small sections of the records to create an environment that began as comfortable. Long drones that sounded more alive due to the pop and snaps of old vinyl were built up and accentuated progessively more by Jeck. Toward the middle of the piece he started to loop a few different pieces of beats that created a poly-rhythm that you really couldn’t help but bob your head to a bit. Some in the crowd were tapping slightly, but due to the chairs and very cramped quarters much beyond that was not possible.
As much as I was sensing a slight air of pretension from crowd(which could easily be in my head due to my own nervousness at being a new venue), they were exceptionally quiet. I guess I am used to the crowds at clubs where people are there to be seen as much as they are there to actually hear the performance. It was refreshing to listen to an hour of music uninterrupted by drunkards and hipsters. This really was all about the music as Andrew Fenchel maked clear in a recent Gapers Block interview, which was reproduced nicely by the 4 speaker sound system and acoustically treated walls. The stark minimalism of the simple square space gave the feeling of an art gallery, which I think helps set the mind up for really processing new and experimental music.
Jeck closed his piece with the simple word “one hundred,” giving props to Lampo and expressing his thanks all at once. A most fabulous balloon drop followed with a few speeches and cake and coffee to celebrate. They have given no clue as to where yet, but Lampo is moving somewhere and they are planning a fall season starting in September. Here’s to 100 more shows and a new space that will hopefully have better ventilation.
Download: Phillip Jeck - "Pax" (from the 2002 album Stroke)