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  LANDING w/ Magicicada  
  Atlanta, GA  
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In the past few years Landing have become one of my favorite bands. I have adored their past few releases (the lovely Seasons, their magnificent endcap to the New Found Land tryptych, and their latest, Passages Through), and have been looking forward to seeing them again.

The thing is, i almost missed this show. Why? Well, because Eyedrum is an artist collective type thing, and apparently these people don't understand marketing! It is almost impossible to find out what is going on at Eyedrum (basically, the schedule is on the door, or maybe you can be lucky enough to hit their website on a day in which it happens to allow you to access the schedule), and if events had not conspired the Thursday before this show, i would not have known about it at all! On that fateful Thursday, i got out of my Chemistry Lab about half an hour early, which meant i was in my car for the very end of PostScript. And, right at the end, the DJ announced this show.

So: thanks Mr DJ. I owe you one. And Eyedrum: run a friggin' ad in Stomp and Stammer, or get your damned website fixed. Please.

Okay, thanks for letting me get that off my chest.

As to the show: this was a lovely, wonderful event that i am very very glad i attended. And even though i barely knew about this event, it was still a serious decision to go. This was the night of the second freeze of the year (a really scary event for us Southerners), as well as the night before i had to leave town for the Thanksgiving holiday. (Thanksgiving with relatives in Pittsburgh, PA. Brrr....) So i had to pack, in the cold. Nonetheless, after doing laundry i decided to venture into the cold and see Landing. One moment of enjoyment before i head off to my Aunt's house.

So, i arrived in the howling winds at about 9:30 PM. Eyedrum had about 20 to 30 people in it. Not a big crowd, but about average for the shows i have seen at Eyedrum. It was also, apparently, the end of the current art exhibit. There were only a few pictures, all very interesting cartoonish art that was slightly funny. There were also a lot of empty spaces, with the labels still up. It looked neat -- shame i missed it.

Anyway, i arrived at 9:30, which was before the beer. ("It'll be here soon," said the volunteer at the counter.) So i took a seat and waited. But not for long: within 5 minutes Magicicada took the stage.

Magicicada is the project of Christopher White, from Covington, GA. He makes a sort of electronic noise music for the Sub:Marine Label. I have his album, and, well, i can't listen to it all the way through at once. It is interesting, but harsh. Grating. Nicely textured, but unrelenting.

The live setup was that of the standard electronic act: laptop and mixing board. The sound, thoguh, seemed to work better in a live environment. I don't know if he toned it down, or if his new sound is less harsh, or what. What i heard live was a sort of dark ambient music with occasional shocking moments of noise. It was nicely atmospheric and built so that, towards the end of the show, it was noisy like the album. A very nice blend. Pleasant, but obviously not for everyone.

His whole show lasted about 20 minutes, and that was just long enough.

Then there was a twenty minute intermission, during which beer showed up, and Landing fussed about with their complicated set-up.

Landing were an interesting band, visually. They were only a three piece today (which disapointed me that i would not get to hear the lovely vocals of Adrienne Snow live), but all three were largish guys with glasses, vaguely scruffy (which might be due to being on tour), and smacking gum. They looked, in fact, like most of the people in the crowd, only they had gum. This similarity betweent he audience and the performer is the theory behind Indie Rock, but that theory is not so often met. I felt right at home.

At 10:12 PM Landing started their set. Aaron Snow started singing a light pop tune like they are doing these days, and then the song metamorphosized into a wandering ambient tune. This song lasted until 10:40 PM, where Aaron looked up at the crowd and smiled shyly, telling the crowd that the first song was done.

This song was 30 minutes of sheer joy. The song changed, grew, and floated by. It had so many movements and so many different parts that it is hard to describe, really. One part i remember in particular featured an amazingly catchy bass riff that Aaron looped, while he and additional guitarist Dick Baldwin tore through their extensive pedal collections, and drummer Daron Gardner smacked gum and added a lightly brushed jazz backing. Wonderful.

They then played a song off of Passages Through that i do not know the title of, but they played it louder and more rocking than it is on the album. This was followed by another short piece which i think was on Seasons.

Then Landing wrapped up the night with a short psychedelic freakout of powerful drumming, thick bass, and e-bowed guitar. A perfect end to their set, really.

Overall, i enjoyed the heck out of the hour that Landing played. And i hope they come back soon, and play longer.

Related Links:

Seasons, a Landing album from 2002.
Fade In Fade Out, a Landing EP from 2002.
New Found Land, a tryptych to which Landing contribute.


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