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Schlammpeitziger, F.X. Randomiz, Holosud
Centre Pompideau, Paris, France, 25.10.2000

A most blessed day in Paris, through the Metro's colored tubes and out towards Pompideau and its exoskeleton of red, green, blue, yellow, and white tubes of plumbing, ventilation, and people on escalators to the various exhibits. These guts of the museum are even greater though, what with the Warhols, Miros, Richters, Ernsts, Dados, and even diChirico's portrait of Appolinaire in shades et al. crammed inside. It was while situated outside for a baguette and wine lunch that I happened upon a posting for tonight's concert of two of the most formidable of A-Musik's electronic camp, Jojo Schlammpeitziger and F.X. Randomiz, as well as their combined forces in Holosud.

While mates Mouse on Mars have received the bulk of the press and collegiate-kid accolades, these two gents have quietly been cranking out nuanced yet bouncy tracks for many years now, and Jojo's first record is a classic of analogue melodies and primitive drum machine driving such ditties out to the lake for a dip or to go fishing. As remedy for a possible aesthetic headache, I returned that night, lost amongst drizzling Parisian rues and labyrinths, the streets glistening in grey hues and watery lights.

I rushed in still damp and into the midst of Schlammpeitziger's set. He had already commenced the sounds, pushing buttons and twisting limbs over the knobs, wringing out percolating beats and letting float great key-curved bubbles of pop, their heights producing even more popped bubbles over and amongst the simple structures. His music defies the very term of "pop" though, for while it is catchy, there is a slippery quality as well. Short-cut minds can grasp at the sounds, yet they soon short-circuit and slide off, like tiny little soap bubbles dancing and laughing further away from fingers and tapping feet, winking and then popping wet all over the audience. Unfortunately, it?s hard to dance in these auditorium chairs, but what makes the show even more maddening is that the French do not clap at all between each song, and an awkward silence hangs overhead after the airborne parabolas and spheres stop their shifting. There is a slow projection of an aquarium that never stops though, instead lending an even dreamier, floating quality to the music. Add to it the unbeknownst-to-them shadowy shapes of certain spectators that slowly observe or stop before the projection screen, and the art observer is turned unto themselves, much like Dan Graham's mirror work in the main gallery.

Next was F.X. Randomiz, who opened up his PowerBook as if popping the lid on a veritable Pandora?s Music Box, what with the sound unleashed. Not unlike a pixilated Bad News Bears team stumbling through a gamelan ensemble, their stumbling cleats creating chaotic tones and beats of incredible felicity and complexity, Felix then proceeded to morph the entire structure, creating even more uneven electronic blooms and alien formations over the course of the twenty minute set. I could not help but think of the day?s earlier Oyvind Fahlstrom piece, Dr. Livingston, I Presume, in terms of the artist taking seemingly familiar comic book shapes and rendering them into something unrecognizable and fresh in a fantastic new world.

Both men came out now, as Holosud, and their sound is not merely a composite of each man?s individual sound but a new complication and creation. Beats and blips are of course the main ingredient, but cut-up with some honky-tonk swing (not the mal du pays for Texas talking here) into tasty new bites. Jojo even stepped out a bit from behind the tables, using at various points of the performance an atomizer hose-bass box, a thumping stick, and a bulbed silver helmet with accompanying ridiculous chicken walk and interpretive dance. "I was a good boy. You were a good boy. We were good boys. This is good." So went the Bruce Naumann video installation, and in using such a recollection at this point, it surely must mean the show was good itself. Hell, even the French laughed and got around to clapping for the two gents, an even better sign.

Copyright © 2000 Andy Beta e-mail address

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