|Arto Lindsay — Encyclopedia of Arto (DOUBLE CD, 2014)|
Arto Lindsay — Encyclopedia of Arto
•↔• One of the instigators of NYC's 1980s No Wave scene, embraced Tropicalia, samba, and bossa nova in following years.
•↔• “I had actually had lunch with Zorn a week before and tried to convince him to start his own place. Actually, I had tried to convince him to buy a sound system. I thought that would be totally cool and he could move it from place to place.” — ARTO LINDSAY
•↔• “Lindsay’s approach is fascinating largely because of the way he flicks from relaxed to tightly wound in a heartbeat, making it sound like he’s soaking up the sun on some back porch somewhere and then unleashing a beat-heavy strain of claustrophobic electronics… Instead of trying to make sense of things, to summarize the unsummarizable, this compilation simply pits chaos and order against one another and lets a beautiful mess unfold.” — Nick Neyland, Pitchfork
Birth name: Arthur Morgan Lindsay
Born: May 28, 1953 in Brazil
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Album release: May 20, 2014
Record Label: Northern Spy (NS 055/081159198916)
01 4 Skies 3:12
02 Simply Are 3:44
03 Illuminated 3:38
04 The Prize 4:01
05 Personagem 4:44
06 Child Prodigy 4:19
07 Ridiculously Deep 4:13
08 Complicity 4:08
09 Invoke 4:29
10 Reentry 3:35
11 Combustivel 4:59
12 Ondina 4:01
13 The Prize 4:48
14 Privacy 2:07
15 Pony 3:08
16 Erotic City 4:31
17 Invoke 2:47
18 Maneiras 3:24
19 O Mais Belo dos Belos 3:44
20 Garden Wall of Guitar 1:16
21 Illuminated 4:15
22 Simply Beautiful 3:40
23 Estaçăo Derradeira 3:35
24 Wall of Guitar 1:59
♦↔♦ Arthur Morgan "Arto" Lindsay is an American guitarist, singer, record producer and experimental composer. He is a 1974 graduate of Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida.
♦↔♦ He has a distinctive soft voice and an often noisy, self-taught guitar style consisting almost entirely of extended techniques, described by Brian Olewnick "studiedly naïve ... sounding like the bastard child of Derek Bailey"; his guitar work is contrasted frequently with gentler, sensuous Brazilian music themes.
♦↔♦ The first CD which makes up Encyclopedia of Arto includes the tracks that Lindsay has chosen from his solo albums of the period between 1996 and 2004, “O Corpo Sutil”, “Mundo Civilizado”, “Noon Chill”, “Prize”, “Invoke” and “Salt”, tracks that he wrote with exceptional travel companions like Amedeo Pace (Blonde Redhead), Marisa Monte, Caetano Veloso, Kassin, Vinicius Cantuaria, as well as the faithful Andrés Levin and Melvin Gibbs.
♦↔♦ In the second CD we find a solo performance of Arto, voice and guitar, a naked, cutting sound where the vocal melodies and the atonal guitar playing manage to epitomize all his “musical poetics”; it’s the essential Arto. Besides an unreleased track titled “Pony”, we find tracks from the aforementioned solo albums, including covers of Prince and Al Green, which revolutionize the studio versions recorded on “Mundo Civilizado.” We also find unreleased covers by Chico Buarque and also of the tradition of carioca Samba “Maneiras” (lead to success in Brazil by Zeca Pagodinho) and of the Samba Reggae “O Mais Belos Dos Belos” of Bahia.
By Nick Neyland; May 19, 2014; Score: 7.7
♦↔♦ If there’s a constant in the career of Arto Lindsay, it’s in the way he positions deep contrasts in close proximity to one another. He’s an American musician who spent a great deal of time growing up in Brazil, ultimately getting spewed out into the the public consciousness in the late 1970s No Wave scene as part of DNA*. The band were short-lived, just like fellow New York corrupters Mars, but in Lindsay’s case it made sense that he’d want to move on quickly. Raised on a diet of tropicalia, punk, and avant garde impulses, he clearly wasn’t the kind of musician to get locked down in one style. The arrogance of youth played a part, too. On talking of DNA’s short history in Marc Masters’ book No Wave, Lindsay said: “We had managed to make a great band — then I just tossed it away because I thought I’d do something else.”
♦↔♦ Where that “something else” took him is documented on this compilation, a two-disc set released by Northern Spy that includes a fistful of tracks spanning Lindsay’s solo career circa 1996-2004. There’s a cohesion to the first disc, which includes 12 tracks culled from various albums, and often settles into the lilting tropicalia-influenced material Lindsay practiced following music made with John Lurie’s Lounge Lizards, the Golden Palominos, and his Ambitious Lovers project. On the second disc, containing solo live recordings taken from performances in various venues between 2011 and 2012, he gets more abrasive, throwing shards of noise in among the prettiness, covering Al Green and Prince along the way, and generally illustrating how his no-fear approach to art has stuck with him as he enters his fifth decade of gelling inverse properties.
♦↔♦ The first disc’s standouts feature Lindsay vying with his peers, or at least leading them astray into his vision. On the wonderfully doomy “4 Skies” from O Corpo Sutil (The Subtle Body) he’s joined by Brian Eno (credited with “sonics”) and Amedeo Pace of Blonde Redhead; Ryuichi Sakamoto lends piano and keyboards to two of the breezier tracks, “Simply Are” (from Noon Chill) and “Child Prodigy” (another Subtle Body cut). Lindsay’s approach is fascinating largely because of the way he flicks from relaxed to tightly wound in a heartbeat, making it sound like he’s soaking up the sun on some back porch somewhere and then unleashing a beat-heavy strain of claustrophobic electronics. On “Personagem” from Salt he’s somewhere in between all those things, filling the air with scratchy guitar, unhurried vocals, and arresting horns.
♦↔♦ The misfires are few — which is surprising, considering it’s coming from someone so keen to look for joins where none are apparent. “Complicity” from 1996's Mundo Civilizado bears the marks of the times a little too overtly, with its reliance on overly compressed electronics and DJ Spooky guest appearance. Still, Lindsay rises above it, largely due to his sharp enunciation, positioned somewhere between wistful and hurt. The live material on the second disc feels like a great release of pressure after the meticulously arranged studio compositions that precede them. Lindsay barks and wails, shouting into the loneliness as his guitar feeds back against him, making it sound less like he’s playing and more like man and machine are brawling on the floor. The atonal workover of Prince’s “Erotic City” even elicits a few laughs from the crowd until Lindsay pummels all the sexuality out of it with great lumps of dissonant guitar.
♦↔♦ The best way to experience this side of Lindsay’s career, to get a feel for where he likes to go and then utterly disembowel it, is to stack up versions of the same song from discs one and two of Encyclopedia. The original “Invoke” is all swooping strings and bright electronic pulses, while the live version sounds like someone being smacked in the face with a piece of sheet metal; “The Prize” is positively funky in recorded form, being built on a bedrock of dark analog bass synth, while live it’s utterly mechanical, stripped of all momentum, swapping swagger for tension. In most hands, a live album tacked onto a best-of compilation might seem like a cheap piece of padding, but this is a rare case where both documents feed off one another, even if it is in the most hostile way imaginable. Instead of trying to make sense of things, to summarize the unsummarizable, this compilation simply pits chaos and order against one another and lets a beautiful mess unfold. (http://pitchfork.com/)
Artist Biography by John Dougan
♦↔♦ One of the great bands of the short-lived New York City-based "no wave" avant-garde punk scene of the late '70s, DNA had what barely amounts to a recording career, yet still managed to produce some crucial music. Originally comprised of guitarist Arto Lindsay, keyboardist Robin Crutchfield, and drummer Ikue Mori, DNA's music was sparse, loud, and noisy — washes of keyboards punctuated by Lindsay's atonal, free-form guitar explosions. DNA made their recording debut in 1978 on a sampler of no wave bands produced by Brian Eno (No New York), and, along with being one of the more interesting bands on the record, also exhibited the most promise. By the time they released their first record, Crutchfield had formed a new band, the far less interesting Dark Day, and DNA had replaced him with bassist Tim Wright, an original member of the seminal Cleveland band Pere Ubu. Now a power trio, and with Lindsay's guitar the manic focal point of their challenging music, DNA seemed poised to become one of the most exciting bands in American avant-garde rock. Instead, they became increasingly enigmatic, rarely played outside of New York, and never recorded again. ♦↔♦ After breaking up in 1982, Lindsay formed the exciting Ambitious Lovers, who released three tremendous albums fusing noise rock with slick pop/soul and Brazilian music (Lindsay is a native of Brazil). He has also produced records for Brazilian superstar Caetano Veloso. Ikue Mori is still performing avant-garde music in New York City, in 2008 celebrating her 30th year in the city, having moved there from her native Tokyo in 1977. In 1993, thanks to John Zorn's great Japanese import label Avant, a DNA CD of previously unavailable live recordings was released.
♦↔♦ Arto Lindsay, personnage énigmatique, facétieux et rare, aime la vie telle qu’elle est, philosophie de vie très brésilienne, fruit de son vécu. Infatigable fouineur et bidouilleur, il a pendant une carrière longue de 35 ans, multiplié les collaborations et les expériences. Ce qu’il est, il nous le présente dans ce double album, ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ARTO. Telle une photographie de l’univers musical créé par Arto, ce recueil se dé-compose en deux parties. il nous propose un double album, deux facettes d’un personnage hors du commun. D’un côté des perles pop de ces dernières années, de l’autre l’impertinence en live au style archi brut voire expérimental.
♦↔♦ Born in the US and raised in Brazil, Arto Lindsay has always absorbed the music that has surrounded him and created a unique synthesis between experimental music, world music, and pop. CD 1 of Encyclopedia of Arto features the tracks that Lindsay has chosen from his solo albums between 1996 and 2004. CD 2 comprises a solo performance by Arto, recorded live at Berghain and HBC in Berlin and Pete’s Candy Store in Brooklyn, and features just voice and guitar, a naked, abrasive sound where the vocal melodies and the atonal guitar playing manage to epitomize all of his “musical poetics”. (http://metisse-music.net/)
INTERVIEW: Personagem: Talking With Arto Lindsay (by Patrick Ambrose)
• "You and You" b/w "Little Ants" (Medical, 1978) — debut single
• No New York (Antilles, 1978) — sampler with four tracks by DNA
• A Taste of DNA (American Clavé, 1981)
• Live at CBGB (Avant, 1993)
The Lounge Lizards:
• The Lounge Lizards (Editions EG, 1981)
• Envy (Editions EG/Virgin, 1984)
• Greed (Virgin, 1988)
• Lust (Elektra, 1991)
Peter Scherer & Arto Lindsay:
• Pretty Ugly (Crammed Discs, 1990) — Music for the ballett choreographed by Amanda Miller in 1988
• Arto Lindsay Trio — Aggregates 1—26 (Knitting Factory Works, 1995)
• O Corpo Sutil / The Subtle Body (Rykodisc, 1996)
• Mundo Civilizado (Rykodisc, 1996)
• Hyper Civilizado (Mundo Civilizado remixes) (Gramavision, 1997)
• Noon Chill (Rykodisc, 1997)
• Prize (Rykodisc/Righteous Babe, 1999)
• Invoke (Righteous Babe, 2002)
• Salt (Righteous Babe, 2004)
|Arto Lindsay — Encyclopedia of Arto (DOUBLE CD, 2014)|