No-Neck Blues Band by Jeremy Yoder
As part of Ten Years Alive on the Infinite Plain, ISSUE is pleased to present the No-Neck Blues Band, one of the most enigmatic, mysterious, and defiantly anti-commercial groups to emerge from 90s New York. Loren Connors, known for his singular adaptation of Delta bottleneck and ancestral blues, is paired with Tom Carter, whose electric guitar work weaves immensely stacked, long-form drones and psychedelic melodies. The iconic and otherworldly songwriter and vocalist Suzanne Langille performs a collaborative set with Cammisa Buerhaus, performing tonight with vocal manipulations, damaged tape loop, and shortwave radio.
Ten Years Alive on the Infinite Plain– a two-month festival celebrating ISSUE Project Room's 10th anniversary– revisits seminal past projects and initiates new relationships with over 60 artists working across disciplines of sound, dance, performance, and literature. Presented as a series of 24 evenings of provocative double billings, Ten Years Alive blurs the boundaries between divergent disciplines and practices and celebrating the vibrancy of the Brooklyn experimental arts community.
Initially based on guerilla impulse and a dissatisfaction with the early 90’s post grunge diaspora, the No-Neck Blues Band (NNCK) emerged in 1993 on New York’s lower east side, soon congealing into an 8-piece cabal of practicing improvisers, determined to collectively inhabit an elsewhere entirely of their own design. Informed by the relentless determination and arch defiance of the free jazz movement, NNCK’s performances are wild, unpredictable, cathartic events, and the records they published were mysterious, encrypted missives. Twenty years later, it is still difficult to say exactly what is going on with this group, other than that they will appear in full force for one night, once more, at issue’s behest, to celebrate dual anniversaries: ISSUE’s tenth, and their own twentieth.
Tom Carter is best known for his work with Charalambides, which he co-founded with longtime creative partner (and one time wife) Christina Carter in 1991. Carter has also undertaken solo work and numerous collaborations with Bardo Pond, Vanessa Arn, Robert Horton, Ian Nagoski, Tower Recordings, Double Leopards, Yellow Swans, Starving Weirdos, and Jandek, among others.
Brooklyn-based guitarist Loren Connors was born in New Haven, Connecticut in 1949. Best known as a composer and improviser, Connors has issued over 50 guitar records on his own imprints (Daggett, St. Joan, Black Label) since the late 1970s and over two dozen on other labels across the globe. He has recorded under the names Guitar Roberts, Loren Mattei, Loren MazzaCane Connors and other variations. Connors' singular adaptation of the blues is a distinct personal vision combining the Delta bottleneck sound and the ancestral blues voice (appearing as distortion, baying hounds or multi-tracked guitar), with hauntingly unexpected sounds. Outside of Connors' three decades of solo work, he has collaborated with Suzanne Langille, Jim O'Rourke, Darin Gray, Alan Licht, Christina Carter, Keiji Haino, San Agustin, Jandek and many others, as well as leading the group Haunted House.
Since 1989, Suzanne Langille has provided iconic, otherworldly, blues-drenched vocals on husband Loren MazzaCane Connors' albums. In October 1998, Langille released her first solo album, The Enchanted Forest, which features guitar by Connors. Evangeline and Let the Darkness Fall followed in 1999. Langille began performing with New York City trio San Augustin in 1997, eventually releasing a collaborative an EP entitled Passing Song in 2002. Her contributions to Connors' catalog were well documented on 2006's Night Through: Singles and Collected Works 1976-2004, and As Roses Bow: Collected Airs 1992-2002, released the following year. In 2010, Langille released an acclaimed collaborative album with Indian classical musician and multi-instrumentalist Neel Murgai entitled Wild & Foolish Heart. She and Connors resumed recording together for a song cycle to accompany the paintings of M.P. Landis, entitled I Wish I Didn't Dream, which was released in late 2012.
Cammisa Buerhaus is a sound and transmission artist based in New York City. Her sonic, sculptural inventions machinate the production of sound, exploring the effect upon and the relation to our body experience. As a solo performer, her work explodes ideas of territory, ghosts, and sensory fields through a combination of destroyed vocals, tape manipulation and shortwave radio. She released her first solo recording, S/T, in 2012. She also frequently collaborates with avant-saxophonist Tamio Shiraishi in an exploration of sound in the expanded field. Their first attempt, DaikYoFuroShiki, was released on Wild Flesh Productions in 2013.
Ten Years Alive on the Infinite Plain is made possible, in part, by “Lead Presenter” support from Robert Bielecki and HBO; “Festival Sponsor” support from Robert Longo, Margo Somma & John Hamilton, and Sixpoint Brewery; with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; and with the support of ISSUE Project Room’s Members.