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Not to toot my own horn or anything, but I posted a flier for a show both on here and on JaxScene for a show that went down last night and I was right, it was a ton of fun! I’d doubt anyone went to the show as a result of my blogging but they should have.

So last night at the laundromat on Park and King, a few noise-bands got together and put on a free show. I had no idea what to expect from this and that certainly didn’t include people actually doing laundry and listening to crazy experimental music. But that’s what went down and it was pretty awesome.

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First, the music. I’ll be frank, it’s not for everyone. If you can’t handle acts like Animal Collective, then seriously, stay away! But if you appreciate experimentation and find beauty in chaos then you would have enjoyed yourself thoroughly. A casual observer would probably scoff at Telepathik Friend’s rapping over psychedelic beats and intentional mike distortion or roll their eyes at his helmet made of day-glo pipe cleaners, but they aren’t paying any attention to what is really going on. It’s all the more evident when Guardians of the Thickets sit in a circle of sorts and hammer out all kinds of insanity. If you do pay close enough attention you will hear the order emerge from the chaos. Even though the girls are hitting the bass drum with anything from a ladle to a branch from the tree outside, there is a distinct and recognizable rhythm. The bearded guitarists’ drone riffs reminded immediately of the dark 60’s-inspired music that is really taking hold in Austin and LA right now. Making such music is actually a lot harder than it looks. What is most admirable about it is the all-out rejection of classical tonality, chord progression, rhythm, instrumentation, etc. It’s all about the moment but it transcends simple improvisation. Getting distortion from the mikes, the sounds of the dryers turning, that stick from outside, and dragging the guitar against the linoleum are all elements of the music that make it impossible to reproduce. And therein, to me at least, is its beauty. It’s all about the experience and you simply have to be there to get it.

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So what struck me most about this experience was simply that it was happening. Right here, a few blocks from my house. That this is still possible, for people to come together and throw an impromptu show away from the standard dives, in Jacksonville and more specifically, in Riverside, fills me with hope. And this is exactly why the Southbank will never become the new Riverside! There, I said it.

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One more thing. Maybe I’m just lucky because I have no real responsibilities at the moment and can enjoy the freedom of doing whatever the fuck I want, but it’s time to get out there and DO STUFF! A free show built on so novel an idea and in such a bizarre location should, if nothing else, pique your interest enough to at least check it out. There is so much going on in this city that nobody seems to really care about. If I can find all this great stuff to do, then so should anybody. So get your ass out there and support anything and everything local you can. Especially music. And support non-local music too and maybe some better bands will come through. So I’ll see you tonight at Los Campesinos! over yonder at Jack Rabbits. You are going, right?

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