This evening of guitar performances showcases artists of the Vin Du Select Qualitite, or VDSQ label, an acoustic guitar LP series curated by Steve Lowenthal of Swingset Magazine and Plastic Records. Tonight Bill Orcutt, Glenn Jones, Mark McGuire, Matthew Mullane and Anthony Pasquarosa perform solo, each celebrating new and forthcoming releases.
Bill Orcutt’s sound is a hiccup-stuttered reimagining of blues guitar. One can hear familiar Southern folk scales between Orcutt’s jagged solo acoustic phrases, pulling and pushing melodies into unresolved fragments that eventually come unmoored in vast and satisfying note-torrents. Former guitarist and founder of the noise/punk rock duo Harry Pussy, Orcutt was already a significant name in experimental noise circles when he released his solo debut in '96, and has published a string of releases since confirming his essential role in the contemporary experimental scene. Long interested in cutting-edge art, Orcutt had a Master's in English and had made several experimental short films, one of which sold to MTV in 1990. He also played in several local punk bands, most notably the Trash Monkeys, before forming Harry Pussy in 1992 with his wife, drummer Adris Hoyos. They worked together for the next five years, releasing a series of uncompromising and confrontational recordings on small labels and gaining acclaim from the likes of Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and Sebadoh's Lou Barlow.
A 30+-year devotee of the so-called "American Primitive" school of acoustic steel string guitarists, Glenn Jones has been playing guitar since the age of 14. He formed Boston pysch-rock band, Cul de Sac, in 1989 and led it on its 20 year journey to nowhere, leaving nine albums in its wake, including collaborations with guitarist John Fahey and Can's Damo Suzuki. Jones’ latest album, My Garden State (Thrill Jockey) has garnered the best reviews of his career, and made NPR's "Best Albums of 2013" list. He's also just completed a trio album with Chris Corsano and David Greenberger, slated for release in 2014. Jones has also performed with Peter Lang, Steffen Basho-Junghans, Cian Nugent, James Blackshaw, Paul Metzger, Peter Walker, Meg and Laura Baird, Harris Newman, Sean Smith, MV + EE, Dredd Foole, Sharron Kruaus, Tom Carter, Yo La Tengo, Thurston Moore, Chris Corsano, and many others.
Cleveland-born, Portland-based guitarist and producer Marc McGuire has emerged from the mid-western underground consciousness to international repute with his unique vision of modern psychedelia. Using electric and acoustic guitars, a Talkbox, drum machines, a mandolin and lots in between, McGuire conducts a sonic exploration of the inner self. McGuire first garnered attention as part of Cleveland's drone collective Emeralds, a band that single handedly created a paradigm shift toward the meditative in an era of underground music best known for noise and chaos. Their albums for the Editions Mego, No Fun and Hanson labels, among others, remain treasured to a generation of tape collecting misfits. The last few years have found McGuire touring with friends like Ducktails as well as performing as a fifth member of the legendary Afghan Whigs, collaborating with artists like Ponytail's Dustin Wong and releasing his own R&B influenced Road Chief project.
Matthew Mullane is a fingerstyle guitarist whose electric/acoustic solo performances are noted for their intricate beauty, unique phrasings, and idiosyncratic technique. His debut album was released on VDSQ Records in 2011, as part of the label's Solo Acoustic series. Mullane’s second LP on VDSQ, Hut Variations, is forthcoming this year and features six new works for acoustic and electric guitar. Mullane last appeared at ISSUE in Winter 2014, debuting new and forthcoming work under his solo electronic moniker, Fabric. His 2011 album under said name was released by Spectrum Spools/Editions Mego.
From the wilds of Western MA, Anthony Pasquarosa is beloved for his work in bands such as Sqrm, Aerosols, World Domination, Frozen Corn, Gluebag, Crystalline Roses and many others. Pasquarosa will be performing selections from his 12 string instrumental guitar LP for VDSQ.
Photo: Bill Orcutt at ISSUE Project Room by Bradley Buehring.