Planet Of The Loops ~ Feb.8 1999
Planet Of The Loops is an extended experimental group dedicated to live improvisational performances with a wide variety of long looping devices. This night was part of a weekly series throughout February at Holy Joe's, a small club in downtown Toronto.
I wanted to bring the dreamSTATE synth-loop approach to the night in combination with my Jam-Man digital looper and had decided to perform for the first time without a regular keyboard, triggering and manipulating my synthesizer loops with only a Peavey PC1600 controller. All set to play deeply spaced music, I was a bit nervous about the unknown factor of improvising with the three guitarists assigned to perform with me that night. (Interacting with 3 guitarists out to play jazzy loops would have been hell for me with that setup.)
Mental relief came early when Michael Rockwood, whom I had never met or heard before that night, demonstrated a very spaced out approach during sound-check and later, our overlapping opening segments felt very good together. POTLoops ringleader Andrew Aldridge (a very versatile guitarist with a huge collection of processors) then unleashed some wonderful strangeness, followed by Michael Keith who responded in kind. I felt compelled to join Michael Keith for the end of his opening segment to add some swirling textural elements and we were soon joined by the other two performers. An animated, ring modulated guitar-loop conversation between Andrew and Michael K later on, was a highlight of the evening for me. ~ Scott M2
Planet Of The Loops @ Holy Joe's ~ June 7 1999
This round promised to be an even more ambient and experimental night. Michael Keith and Andrew Aldridge were back but Andrew chose to leave his guitar at home and bring only his theramin and a strange old cassette deck as sound sources to feed his loops. He certainly leads Planet Of The Loops by example. The fourth player was a good friend, Steven Sauve, on an old monophonic Roland SH-5 synthesizer and various short (.5 to 5 second) looping devices. This was the first time I was to share a stage with him though we have experimented and improvised together before. I tried another small set-up with only my PC1600 controlling a Roland JD-900 synth and a microphone (feeding my JamMan looper) processed through a Nord Modular rack synth I had bought about a week before. The POTLoops crew can certainly inspire you to push outside your safety zone for an evening of improv.
The first-half solo and duo sections turned out well. My favourite sections were Steven's rippling loops, which evoked for me the feeling of some early Terry Riley (circa "Rainbow In Curved Air") and the first half of Andrew's theramin attack, which evolved into an unexpected rhythmic section demanding intense focus on his part. The group's second-half free-for-all seemed particularly successful as we all went for an interlocking pure sound approach punctuated by Michael's humourous walkman-through-the-guitar pickup voice-clip injections. ~ Scott M2
~ The Drone Cycle 2000 ~ Ted's
1999 ~ Feedback Monitor 3rd Anniversary ~ Planet Of The Loops ~ THE AMBiENT PiNG
1998 ~ World Electronic Music Festival ~ Interference Orange
1997 ~ waveforms at The H5 Project ~ Symptom Hall