It could be argued that much of what was heard at The Basement was noise.
After all, during a two year run that ended in 2011 the now-defunct venue (located at 819 Main St. in downtown Myrtle Beach) hosted pretty much any punk, rock, indie, metal and electronic act that needed a place to play.
But even with a regular slate of bleeding-edge — and occasionally bleeding-ear — lineups, little of what was performed at this undergound venue could be literally classified as Noise.
Now, thanks to local Experimental/Noise act Eletric Bird Noise fans can relive some of the madness of a few epic live shows at The Basement that truly pushed the envelope of what it means to make music.
"Live at the Basement" is the latest album from local producer and performer Brian McKenzie (SAVAS, Sqwearl), his second Electric Bird Noise effort released through N.C.-based independent label Silber Records.
The album features live recordings of experimental ensemble shows performed in late 2009 by Electric Bird Noise mastermind McKenzie featuring the likes of Steve Bailey, Brian John Mitchell (Remora), Nic Slaton (slicnaton), Mahlon Hoard, Michael Wood (M Is We, SAVAS) and 50 other guests.
These orchestrated improvisational "themes" are executed over three tracks on the album, one highlighting an army of acoustic guitars, another a choir of voices, and the final track featuring several local and regional experimental performing simultaneously.
"'Live at the Basement' presents a very different side of Electric Bird Noise than you may be used to, but it still takes you on an epic journey like the project always has," says Silber Records of the new release.
In celebration of the new release (available here as a free download), McKenzie has spearheaded a show Saturday night that will feature Clang Quartet, Remora, Claudia Gregory and Peter Nine in addition to Electric Bird Noise. The performance will start at 8 p.m. sharp at Fresh Brewed Coffee House, 903 Broadway St., and cover is $5 at the door.
"Expect interesting, sometimes difficult, beautiful, ugly, original, purely creative sets from all the performers saturday night," says McKenzie.
Scotty Irving performs at Clang QuartetPerhaps one of the most interesting performances of the night will come from Scotty Irving (aka Clang Quartet), a musician and performance artist from Stokesdale, N.C. Billed as a "percussive interpretation on following Jesus Christ," Clang Quartet features Irving in elaborate, self-made art installations which metaphorically represent his faith and the trials of Jesus Christ.
During his performance, this world-class drummer (Benj-O-Matic, Geezer Lake, Bunker) improvises his way through a series of effects pedals, drums, cymbals and noisemakers while contorting his body in ever-more-complicated ways.
In addition N.C.'s Remora — featuring Silber Records head Brian Jon Mitchell — local songstress Claudia Gregory and Peter Nine will add their own unique elements to what's sure to be a one-of-a-kind show.
And as for what to expect from his set on Saturday night, McKenzie plans to once again allow the crowd an opportunity to be part of his act.
"Keeping with the 'Live at the Basement' theme for my set, I am encouraging anyone attending to bring a musical instrument or noise maker ... we love pot and pans! Anything that makes noise!"
McKenzie says he plans to have each participant delegated to a single note or strict rhythm for at least 15 minutes and record the resulting cacophony of sound for a future project.
For more on Saturday's show visit freshbrewedcoffeehouse.com or check out the Facebook event.
Live at the Basement
To download "Live at the Basement" or for more info on Electric Bird Noise, Remora and Clang Quartet visit the Silber Records website. Here's a look at the breakdown of the new album:
• "The Eleven Twelve Ensemble": Local CCU bass instructor Steve Bailey on solo bass along with 40 friends & family onacoustic guitars, electric guitars, basses, keyboards, percussion, & various random objects including Brian John Mitchell (Remora), Nicholas Slaton (slicnaton), Michael Wood (SAVAS) led & conducted by McKenzie (electric guitar, effects, loop machine).
• "The July 23rd Collective": Electric Bird Noise, Dark Pony, Ghost Vapor, & Catpuncher all playing simultaneously.
• "The 12.14 Choir": Ed Tanner (Sharklegs, Downtribe) on lead vocal, Bates Holdman (Holman-Gravel & Friends) on percussion, Mahlon Hoard on soprano saxophone, 20 friends and family on vocals and various random objects, conducted by McKenzie (electric guitar, effects, loop machine).