Arlt ⟡ Marcia Basset & Ursula Scherrer

Galeria Zé dos Bois

Arlt ©Marie Losier
Marcia Bassett & Ursula Scherrer


French duo that has been playfully subverting the rules of French song for almost fifteen years, Altr arrives at ZDB after releasing their sixth and most successful album – Turnetable – on a Murailles Music edition. Composed by Eloïse Decazes and Sing Sing, they resort to a wealth of more or less usual instruments and disparate inspirations to project a living kaleidoscope where pieces of chanson française, surrealism, folk, calypso, circus corrope and an almost naive romantic aura, fully aware of its purity, are revealed. Stripped down songs, made of small noises, vocal harmonies, muted keyboards, concertina and playable guitar lines, all treated with an exploratory sense that is never taken too seriously. BS

Marcia Bassett & Ursula Scherrer

One of the queens of the most incatalogable music born on American soil at the turn of this century, Marcia Bassett was a fundamental part of an unrepeatable agitation and urgency among the most unfathomable wastelands of music outside that country, in a period of overwhelming fertility where the limits of rock, the legacy of folk, noise, drone and volatile forms of electronics converged in a world of languages (even today) without a name. For a possible history yet told and to be explored, there are countless precious documents scattered among CDRs, cassettes, very limited vinyl editions and passionate sharing on Soulseek in a whirlwind of dispersed geography that escapes the oblivion of those who followed this process and from which emerged names more than recognized in realities already distant from the roots of the American underground, from concerts in lofts, community-run associations, and student houses. Origins for stars like James Ferraro, Daniel Lopatin, Grouper, or Pete Swanson and field of work continued by Black Dice, Six Organs of Admittance, or Sunburned Hand Of The Man. And Marcia Bassett.

With a huge discography, Bassett was part of the superlative Double Leopards, of which Halve Maen is an absolute and intangible colossus, of the triumvirate “freak-folk-drone” GHQ alongside Steve Gunn and Pete Nolan, of the sonic ecstasy of Hototogisu and of a constant solo trajectory as Zaïmph. This incarnation continues to this day and has left a trail of hypnotic releases such as Emblem, Mirage of the Otheror Rhizomatic Gaze ranging from the most haunted drone to transcendent vocal explorations, from beatific keyboard landscapes to guitar abysses. All guided by a very personal vision and without any concessions with more or less obvious tendencies.

At the same time, she has been involved in several collaborations, in particular with Samara Lubelski, and with an enormous affinity for artists who are very close to us like Margarida Garcia and Manuel Mota, having also started in this decade to sign solo works in his own name. In this state, he has focused on immersive tours around voice and modular and analog synthesizers, with special attention to the legendary Buchla, in an action that triggered for posterity Undulating Akrasboning last year. In this continuum and with the idea always full of collaboration, Bassett returns to Portugal in the company of Ursula Scherrer, Swiss artist with a multifaceted work in the fields of installation, performance, photography and video and who has collaborated actively in this last field with Brian Chase from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, besides occasional synergetic encounters with Shelley Hirsch or Valerio Tricoli. A concert pointing to states of absolute hypnosis and immersion therefore. BS

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