I have [Dixon, Gene Back, and brother Mike Zammuto] up for sessions and we record things in a very loose way and then I go through those recordings later and pull out the parts that can go beyond expectation and build from those elements, rather than the sample library that the Books were drawing from.
SFBG But you're still creating your own instruments out of found objects.
NZ It's such a weird habit, and it's something I've been doing a long time. My interest in music came out of recording these sculptures back in college...I started to make these sculptures that had this sound component, and I needed a way to record those sculptures. So it's kind of been in the backdrop of everything I've done for a long time.
One of the first things I started doing was cutting into vinyl, cutting patterns into the circle at the end of each side of a record, and using that as a percussion. That sound sounds like clicks and pops, but if you take those impulses and put them through various environments you get amazing sounds, so playing them through PVC pipes or through filing cabinets with subwoofers installed in them you get these really strange but kind of naturalistic sounds at the same time, where you can't put your finger immediately on what they are, and I think that's why I'm interested in them. They have this mysterious quality.
SFBG What about the thematic elements, lyrically, on the record, it seems like it's coming from a lot of new beginnings, new experiences, "The Shape of Things to Come" and so forth?
NZ The end of the Books was a harrowing experience, it took a very long time for it to go through its death throes. Lots of frustrations, then finally giving up and being like, 'OK, what the hell do I do now?' I'm asking lightning to strike twice, starting another band at this point in my life, so the lyrics are coming out of a very angsty place on this record. And I think I'm getting out of it, finally. Now that the band has come together in such an amazing way. I'm not in such a dark mood anymore [laughs].
I think I was writing about my own experiences, but in the frame of something more universal, for somebody who is frustrated out of their minds and in need of a new beginning. Just a general expression of having this need to move forward, but also going into unexplored territory.
San Francisco's own Future Twin (soundcloud.com/futuretwin) released the second of its Summer Single series tracks last week. Angular "Sara" is tethered by a driving guitar line, and singer Jean Yaste's caramel-coated vocals. Lyrically, it's a testament to Yaste's personal female heroes, and a call to action to all women to question the status quo and explore alternative experiences.
WOODKID (CANCELLED DUE TO TRAVEL CONDITIONS AFTER THE STORM)
French composer-artist Woodkid (a.k.a Yoann Lemoine) creates sounds that bloom like live-action role-playing background music. Or, video game music using entirely classical orchestration, strings, and Lemoine's low octave, accented pipes. (You could easily picture Link chasing after Zelda during "Iron.") Each track builds like a sassy, page-turning epic, which make his two EPs feel like brief odysseys. That's right, he's yet to release a full-length, but that record — The Golden Age — is coming. Though you might have seen his stylish videos for Agyness Deyn-featuring "Iron" or "Run Boy Run." Or hell, you may know him from his other life as a music video director: Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream," anyone? With Pacific Air.
Fri/2, 9pm, $20
1025 Columbus, SF