Guerilla-style live performances are a hallmark of Rhode Island noise rock duo Lightning Bolt. After a sold-out performance last year at Berghain, drummer Brian Chippendale and bass guitarist Brian Gibson return to the same venue. Their Fantasy Empire album (Thrill Jockey) is a ferocious, consuming experience that sounds like the band are playing just a few feet away, using the clarity afforded by the studio to amplify the intensity they project. Every frantic drum hit, every fuzzed-out riff, sounds more present and tangible than ever before.
Over the course of their two-decade existence, Lightning Bolt have revolutionized underground rock in immeasurable ways. The duo broke the barrier between stage and audience by setting themselves up on the floor in the midst of the crowd. Their momentous live performances and the mania they inspired paved the way for similar tactics used by Dan Deacon and literally hundreds of others.
Similarly, the band’s recordings have always been chaotic, roaring, blown out documents that sound like they could destroy even the toughest set of speakers. Fantasy Empire, Lightning Bolt’s sixth album and first in five years, is a fresh take from a band intent on pushing themselves musically and sonically while maintaining the aesthetic that has defined not only them, but an entire generation of noisemakers.
Joining the evening is DJ Scotch Egg, a producer of chiptune / gabber music. He started out in his native Japan, making improvised noise music performing under the name Shiez 2000, also contributing to a few other projects in the scene. After moving to Brighton from Tokyo, he founded Brighton's premier breakcore/noise night, Wrong Music, with friends Henry Collins (aka Shitmat) and Matt (Roger Species). Collins took Scotch Egg under his wing, convincing him to use his Game Boy to create gabber tracks. As of 2006, he began releasing music on the Wrong Music label, Adaadat & Junior Aspirin Records, with notable collaborations with Ove-Naxx, Hvartski, Duracell, Bong-Ra, The Pipettes and The Go! Team. Next to his band projects Drumeyes (with Eda of Boredoms) and Devilman (with Taigen Kawabe of Bo Nigen) Shige produces and performs as DJ Scotch Bonnet and ist co-runs the label Small But Hard.