Wed 14th August 2013

£4 on the door

**ONE OF ONLY A HANDFUL OF UK DATES (others are at Cafe Oto, London on 13th and Volcanic Tongue, Glasgow on 17th)**

“Life Less Lost emerged in tandem with the first wave of artists flying a flag for a lo-fi and rawly immediate post-Incredible String Band aesthetic; in the process, ploughing a furrow that was being simultaneously worked at the time by folks like Six Organs Of Admittance and The Tower Recordings, both of whom the work Joshua Burkett’s tunes bears traces of.” Mutant Sounds

“Burkett’s songs radiate an aura of stoned wonder that might occasionally flicker, but never goes out…” Dusted Magazine

“JOSH BURKETT is a Western Massachusetts cornerstone. He runs MYSTERY TRAIN RECORDS in Amherst and plays/played music under his own name, as TARP, as a member of VERMONSTER, etc. He also runs a record label called MYSTRA RECORDS. Busy guy jeez!”

An absolute pleasure to welcome one of east coast America’s true musical innovators to the UK. Joshua Burkett first came to the underground’s attention in the early-mid 1990s as a member of the sprawling free-rock unit Vermonster, whose three incredible LPs on Twisted Village transported the Dead C’s burned-out Antipodean gnarl to the autumnal climes of Western Massachusetts. When the band disintegrated in 1993, he began making solo music under his own name, ostensibly opening the first chapter of what became popularly known as ‘New Weird America’. These fractured, home recorded, budget interpretations of the Incredible String Band vibe seem now to have bridged the gap between the older aesthetic of the region (Supreme Dicks, Sentridoh, Scud Mountain Boys et al) with the newer, more consciously psychedelic wave of musicians (Sunburned Hand Of The Man, Chris Corsano, Dredd Fool, The Tower Recordings et al).

Burkett’s 1995 debut masterpiece Owlsleavesrustling was reissued in 2009 by Ron Schneiderman of Sunburned’s label Spirit Of Orr with gushing liner notes by Chris Corsano and his last new release, Where’s My Hat, came out in 2008 on the ever-incredible Time Lag label. His second album Life Less Lost from 1998 will be issued for the first time ever on vinyl in late 2013 by Golden Lab and this tour will be a glorious precursor to its release.

Accompanying Burkett on these dates will be UK guitar player, head honcho of the wonderful Winebox Press label and member of Serfs and The Whole Voyald, Jon Collin, fresh from his recent coast-to-coast tour of the US. Collin’s guitar playing is sparse, contemplative and, when the mood is right, utterly awesome (lookout for an upcoming issue of his recent Albany, NY show for evidence). Inspired by Loren Mazzacane Connors, Bill Orcutt and John Fahey in equal measure, he fashions a style all his own where overtones ring and space is paramount. His debut vinyl release was just issued on Winebox Press.

In support tonight will be Manchester guitar player David Birchall whose recent work with free-jazz drummer Andrew Cheetham has been getting more and more disjointed, scratchy and joyous with comical, but never annoyingly so, manipulation of balloons and heavy breathing and vocalising to accompany his sometimes tonal, always excitingly improvised Derek Bailey inspired electric guitar excursions. Tonight he will be performing solo in deference to the tone of the evening and in-line with his most recent recording, which is a solo album due for release sometime this year.

Also appearing will be Manchester based guitar songwriter Edwin Stevens in his Irma Vep guise. Highly influenced by Bill Callahan with a twist of parochial, black North Welsh humour, he tells tales of stunted sexuality and familially-inspired self-doubt. His gorgeous LP ‘HAHA’ was released last year on the Turquoise Coal imprint.

Opening the evening is Sam Schlicht – a midlander and long-time Manchester resident who’s slowly been picking his way toward 12-string power-glory with bellowed blues and a heavy handed technique that perfectly mirrors his characteristic bolshy humility.