I’d won tickets to gain access to some kind of underground circular machine room, so Captain Howard and I decided to put a gig on. A gang of us arrived outside with instruments, equipment and carrier bags from the off-license, and the heavy metal street door was opened by two security guards. They were friendly, welcomed us in and even helped us carry all the equipment down a metal spiral staircase down into the dark, dingy, bowels of the earth. At the bottom of the stairs was a dark corridor with white wall lights mounted at intervals, that managed not to illuminate any aspect of the corridor, but provided something to follow in order to move along it. Eventually we came to a wire mesh door which opened into the machine room itself. The security guards said they’d be back in a couple of hours when it was time to go, and left us to it.
The first half of the planned set contained a mix of SPUCKTUTE, History Of Guns and Xykogen tracks, plus two solo pieces created as part of this dream. The band was made up of me and Captain Howard plus a revolving cast of people from the afore-mentioned bands… sometimes they’d change mid-song when I wasn’t looking at them.
The band were in the centre of the circular room. A couple of conveniently waist-high large, bizarre, humming machines (complete with flashing lights) had synths, drum machines, samplers, laptops, cans of drink etc. on. The audience, around the edges of the room between and on more curious machines, were made up of assorted friends and loved ones, and members of the band who weren’t currently playing.
The opening piece was a representation of sex as music. I imagine if I actually attempted to create this IRL it would be a dismal failure, but in the dream to hear it was to experience a slow powerful building throbbing act of sex. In the dream this wasn’t a new piece but something of a ritual opening for gigs I’d been doing for a while.
Next came Going Nowhere (SPUCKTUTE), Secret Garden (History Of Guns), Killing Method (Xykogen) with the different vocalist(s) joining us from the audience for each track. Then something I was aware I’d been building up to, the unveiling of a new piece I’d been working on called the Tesla Symphony… It had a pretty ambient synth-texture kind of a beginning, but then gradually different solo melodies, counterpoints came in. I can still remember parts of the first section, so if I get to a piano or keyboard in the next x hours before it fades, I’ll attempt to work it out.
Alas half way through the Tesla Symphony, there was a commotion outside of the wire door and some kind of uniformed official, backed by police came in demanding we stop and leave… we were trespassing, there was valuable equipment, what did we think we were doing, we’d be arrested if we didn’t leave immediately etc. I tried to explain we’d legitimately won access, and the official spluttered that even that were true it was completely unacceptable to bring instruments, musicians, audience, alcohol etc… I said we’d cleared it with the guards when we’d arrived, and he demanded their names. I said, ‘we don’t want to get anyone in trouble.’ And we started packing everything away…
(The planned second half was another song by each of the three bands, then a mass performance involving everyone…)