Powermoves Entertainment is a locally based record company with international intentions. Eric Martinez established the label back in 2001 and now hosts his own team of personnel and artists. Powermoves has represented the Southwest at glitzy, big-time functions like the Latin Rap Conference, the Sundance Film Festival and the MTV Music Awards. Now, Powermoves vice president of operations John Chavez says the company is preparing for what may be its most important event yet—their Empowering The Youth block party, going down Saturday, July 28, at the Balloon Fiesta Park.
Improv tuba master sounds off on Albuquerque's shrinking venue pool
By Thomas Gilchrist
Mark Weaver is a man of two very different hats. In one he is an architect, governed by the strict rules of design and blueprints. But when he switches to the other he becomes a tuba-playing free-improvisation master. Since he doesn’t call himself a jazz musician, it’s hard to nail a genre to the sounds he creates—much of it being on the spot. That’s why in 2000 he decided to open his own record company, Plutonium Records, as an outlet for his work. Run out of his home, the label stands as a safe haven for local improvised music. Six Plutonium releases to date feature the music of several groups he’s played with. Now the Albuquerque native, who plays with groups such as Selsun Blue, The Patti Littlefield and Mark Weaver Duo, and Brassum, has a brand-new release: Brassum: Live. Here, the Alibi talks to the composer/tuba player about his work and the current state of improvised music in Albuquerque.
Store from another era revamps to survive in a fluctuating today
By Marisa Demarco
Like a sensitive weathervane, Charley's 33s & CDs catches wind of the economy's tricks and turns with the slightest of breezes. When it dips, customers sell off their beautiful vintage goods and records. When it climbs, the huge selection of vinyl nearly walks itself out the door.
Happening is an ambient voyage through a strange, drug-induced dream. It’s a transcendent journey, through the wonderful bliss of congealing sound, from one’s dreary reality to being drunk on some street in Rio de Janeiro, the towering lights from foreign buildings blinding your eyes. Gale’s smooth trumpet is eerily reminiscent of Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew (1969) and On the Corner (1972) sessions, but this album is a modern interpretation of avant-garde work, with more rock elements and a Latin feel. The afro-funk percussion gives life to a feeling reflected in the fantastical album artwork, the feeling that you're somehow slipping … from … reality … [TG]
Crystal Castles • electropunk, synth pop, witch house
By August March
Remember the thing called Witch House? How about darkwave? The constant bifurcation of artistic paths in the field of electronic music can be damnably confusing and irritating, as well as rewarding and helluva lot of fun too—as long as you pick the right band. When adherents of these sorts of genres aren't busy sorting their rainbow-colored toe socks and looking for tubes of Vick's Vaporub to snatch up at the local Walmart, then it's a pretty fair bet that they are listening to the likes of Crystal Castles, a duo of Canuck electro-arhats who've made their mark in the music world with a febrile and spooky glitchiness that has outlasted any names critics might apply in favor of an honestly, intimidatingly pure exploration of sounds that make humans dance and rejoice as they swirl around the very noisy and icy maelstrom of life and death. Ethan Kath and Edith Frances, AKA Crystal Castles, perform live in Burque on Thursday, Oct. 19. Viewed as an opportunity to joyfully and ferociously embrace the void, this ought to be a damn good show, but don't blame me if you can't remember your name afterwards.
Here's a brief on a band with three names, but unlike Eliot's bunch, these dudes are not a coterie of cats. At home across the pond, they're known as the Beat. In the land down under, kindly refer to them as the British Beat. Here in 'Merica, we call them the English Beat. But no matter what you call them, this estimable ensemble that still includes founder and guitarist Dave Wakeling—but not vocalist Ranking Roger—was partially responsible for the upsurge in popularity that two-tone ska saw on both sides of the Atlantic during the '80s and '90s. With a retinue of classic, upbeat jams like “Monkey Murders,” “Spar Wid Me” and “Save It for Later,” the band's touring the states again, impressing OG ska lovers as well as the next generation of horn-crazy youth with their combination of crazy stage antics and terrific tuneage. You can catch the outfit live here at the Duke City on Sunday, Oct. 22, at the Historic El Rey Theatre, but don't worry you don't need checkerboard pants or a smart little hat to enjoy this gig—just make sure those great big feet of yours are rested and ready to dance.