AdHoc Issue 25 is here! Download a PDF of the zine at this link.
Howdy, pardners! God, we’re so sorry we said “howdy” and “pardners”; it’s SxSW time again, and we’re excited. Last year, after our yearly showcase at Cheer Up Charlies, we snuck away from the bustle of Dirty Sixth Street and hit the Broken Spoke, a legendary country dancehall with an entire room dedicated to the cowboy hats of the rich and famous. Between glugs of Lone Star, we caught a set from The Derailers, one of the greatest and loudest honky-tonk bands of our time. They covered Buck Owens, they covered The Beatles, they played songs about heartbreak and hangovers, and we tried to dance along with the regulars and failed miserably. That spirit of discovery and possibility defines the SxSW experience, no matter how many stages get sponsored by Doritos.
This year, if you’re looking for something off the beaten path, we’ll be back at Cheer Up Charlies on Red River, putting on two nights of shows on two stages, featuring sets from Snail Mail and Flasher—two artists featured in this zine—as well as HOVVDY, Sudan Archives, A Place to Bury Strangers, Sammus, and Ought. We’ll see you at HOVVDY, pardners, and we’ll try to keep the puns at a minimum.
AdHoc 25's contributors:
Taylor Mulitz is a freelance designer and the guitarist and vocalist of Flasher. He designed this issue’s cover.
Anna True is a food-motivated graphic designer and illustrator. She made the illustrations for this zine.
Jeff Rosenstock is an up-and-coming songwriter from NYC. He penned this issue’s advice column.
Look out for physical copies both at our shows and at record stores, bookstores, coffee shops, and community centers throughout the city. There will also be copies at our SxSW showcases at Cheer Up Charlies. If you happen to live outside of New York, you may order a copy as well.
Catch AdHoc at SxSW for our Unofficial and Official showcases on 3/14 & 3/16!
The first time I saw FRIGS live was in Boston, at the tail end of a noise rock slump. Two years of fuzzed-out basement shows and a bad habit of forgetting my earplugs at home had left me at least a dozen decibels poorer in both ears and more than a little apprehensive about standing anywhere within striking distance of a cranked amp. But the Toronto rock scene is always a good bet, and with fellow Canadians HSY on the bill as well, I tucked those plugs into my pocket and followed my heart to Club Bohemia.
It’s a wonderful thing, brushing up against the unknown, but FRIGS went and ripped a hole straight through it that night. Despite their drummer pulling a second shift with HSY that tour, the band went off, sparing no one from the all-consuming, full-body roar they create on stage. Now that they’ve released their debut LP, Basic Behavior, you can get a taste of it off-stage as well.
The sound is tightly-wound, but deeply emotive. FRIGS hurl themselves at the wall of existential frustration, at times maintaining a stately post-punk pulse, occasionally erupting into frantic, borderline psychedelic hysterics as guitars, vocals, and drums lash out in panic-attack waves of delicious noise. From the ping-ponging slapback and measured thump of opener “Doghead,” to the slow inferno vibe-out of closer “Trashyard,” FRIGS aren’t here for your complacency. Basic Behavior is a record of action, a taste of what’s possible when you get up and do the damn thing.
Ahead of their show at Alphaville on March 3 with Bambara, Weeping Icon, Reverent, and Dean Cercone, AdHoc spoke to vocalist Bria Salmena about the record and misguided attempts to classify their ferocious sound.
When the world is falling apart, have a dance party.
That maxim seems to encapsulate Shopping’s approach to modern life on their new LP, The Official Body, which was produced by Orange Juice legend Edwyn Collins. Though its ten songs abound with references to groupthink and alienation, the album’s skittery drums, jagged guitar riffs, and chunky bass lines just might convince you to quit worrying and start moving your feet.
Billy Easter (bass guitar and vocals), Rachel Aggs (guitar and vocals), and Andrew Milk (drums and vocals) met through the London DIY scene and formed Shopping in 2012, out of their previous band, Cover Girl. They released their hard-charging 2013 debut, Consumer Complaints, on Easter and Milk’s label Milk Records before signing to FatCat and releasing the angular Why Choose in 2015.
Shopping toured that second record amidst the turmoil of Brexit and Trumpmania, twin phenomena that seem to have inspired some music journalists to read post-punk trio’s antics as “political.” While the label is by no means disingenuous (their songs have tackled issues like capitalism and identity politics), the group bristles slightly at being boxed in by the classification.
“I think it would be really easy to be like, ‘We have a platform, what are we going to say?’ and put loads of pressure on ourselves as if our music can change anything,” Aggs said over Google Hangout. “I know that sounds a bit depressing, but it kind of can’t. The most it can do is be cathartic for us and our friends and our fans.”
If there is a label that sticks to Shopping, let it be one of self-reliance and tenacity.
“We haven’t had a completely easy, breezy, beautiful time where we’ve been basking in the release of our last album for the last two years,” Easter said. “But we haven’t let it get us down. We’re still here and we’ve got another album.”
Shopping play with French Vanilla, Future Punx, and Pickled Onion at Market Hotel on March 3. They have also just released a new video for their track "Suddenly Gone" from the new album The Official Body, you can check it out below.
On Tuesday, Homeshake began their sold out 4-night stay at Market Hotel. They were joined by Greatest Champion Alive, who played a stunning first show. Griffin Harrington was there to capture the magic – check out his images below. Homeshake will play the last of his 4 sold out shows at Market Hotel tonight with Un Blonde.
The members of Brooklyn-based indie outfit Barrie hail, variously, from Baltimore, Boston, São Paulo, London, and Upstate New York, but they met at Greenpoint's The Lot Radio, where half of the band worked. Despite their geographical differences, they create a cohesive sound on "Canyons," their psychedelic, bass-heavy new single. On the heels of the release of "Canyons," we caught up with the band and discussed Tinder, their writing process, and their upcoming show at Baby's All Right on February 8 with NADINE and Lexie. You can listen to their new single, "Canyons," below.
AdHoc: You’re all from very different places: England, Brazil, and the East Coast. How did you all meet?
Barrie: We all met though the Lot Radio in Greenpoint, through our friend Joe Van Moyland. He actually had the idea for the band and connected us all.
In #adhoclifeadvice, we ask artists we love to answer questions from you, our readers. This time around, Adult Mom frontperson Steph Knipe discusses juggling obligations and politely declining an offer to collaborate. Adult Mom will perform with Harmony Woods and Goodie at Baby's All Right on February 3.
@ivyrnel: What do you do when you’re obligated to do something, but really can’t because it [...] will be detrimental to your mental health, but not doing the thing will also be detrimental to your mental health as people will bitch about you for not doing it?
Steph Knipe: I like to make a list and identify what it would mean to “push myself.” Kind of like, if I decide to go into work today, I will have pain in my back for the rest of the week. If I don’t go into work today, I won’t have enough money for my bills. If I don’t go out with my friends, they will be mad at me. If I stay home, I will give myself space and time to process through what I’m dealing with.
I like to make lists of what the true “repercussions” would be, to really size up what is more detrimental and what isn’t. Obligations are real, but, at the end of the day, we are human people, with needs that are constantly in flux. It’s important for me to make these lists to show myself what I need to focus on, what I need to value. Often my health in general is closer to the bottom of the list, and that’s cruel.
Often I feel the need to “suck it up” and “push myself” through things that end up being immensely challenging and bad for my body and brain. I’m not saying it’s always a bad thing to push through, but it should never send you to a place that would be detrimental and dangerous for you. The only reason anyone should push through is to grow and better themselves, not because they have an obligation to somebody else!
Anyways, I’m happy that you’re even thinking about your mental health.That’s an important step! It’s a skill to figure out your true limits, but the only way to start is to start taking inventory. Make the list, and if it comes around that you really cannot escape the obligation, make sure to do at least one amazing thing for yourself that day.
Anonymous: I have a friend—and I enjoy their company and think they’re a great person! But I’m not a huge fan of their music—it just isn’t my thing, but they keep asking me to collaborate on tracks, and I keep giving the excuse that I’m super busy (which is true) but then I’ll collaborate with other people and it feels really awful. Is there ever a tactful way to tell a friend that you’re just not that into their tunes...and still remain friends?
I totally understand why you would lie to your friend; it’s a difficult decision that doesn’t really have any right answers, I would say. BUT, if it were me, I would definitely have an open dialogue about it. Obviously, being told that somebody who you care for doesn’t like your art stings like hell, but there are definitely tactics to lessen the blow with some slight language modifications!
I would start with a positive—maybe something about how you can see that their fans or current collaborators really love the music, and maybe focus on a talent of theirs that you appreciate (good technical singer? producer?). And then I would just be honest: “I just don’t think that us collaborating would be a great fit for me.” The honesty there is great, and it also helps prevents the other person from being defensive, because the language is that it doesn’t work for YOU, not them.
You don’t have to go into detail; I think just a simple response is perfect. It’s not easy to be honest like this, but it’s your art and your project!! An honest and openly communicative friendship is a good one :-)
AdHoc Issue 24 is here! Download a PDF of the zine at this link.
It’s a new year, which means it’s time for some resolutions. Whatever you’ve dedicated yourself to—maybe reading more, or spending less time on social media—any self-improvement regimen is ultimately an attempt to forge an even better version of your (already wonderful) self. Most of the time, being your best self means getting in touch with what makes you unique, celebrating it, and doing what you can to accentuate it. In AdHoc Issue 24, we’ve highlighted some artists who’ve spent their careers marching to the beat of their own drum. Adult Mom’s Steph Knipe heads up this issue’s advice column, dishing on how to maintain your agency amid a sea of obligations both real and perceived. Meanwhile, Jennifer Herrema and Kasra Kurt, members of Royal Trux and Palm respectively, drive home how following your instincts can yield wholly unique art. And what better example of tapping into your hidden creative potential than the portrait of Anaïs Nin that appears on our cover, created by Wax Idols' Hether Fortune? Though she’s only been painting for a few months, the poet and musician has quickly honed in on a style of her own and is stretching what it means to call her an artist. That kind of daring is something to aspire to as we go into 2018.
AdHoc Issue 24's contributors:
Hether Fortune is a multidisciplinary artist and writer best known for her work in the band Wax Idols. She made the painting of Anaïs Nin that appears on the cover of this zine.
Steph Knipe is the songwriter and frontperson of Adult Mom; they are 23 and obsessed with the television series Grey's Anatomy. They penned this issue’s advice column.
Aubrey Nolan is a Queens-based illustrator, cartoonist, and host of the monthly reading series for cartoonists, Panels to the People. She made the illustrations for this zine.
Look out for physical copies both at our shows and at record stores, bookstores, coffee shops, and community centers throughout the city. If you happen to live outside of New York, you may order a copy as well.
Casey Weissbuch is a busy guy. He’s drummed for Diarrhea Planet, Colleen Green, gobbinjr, Mitski, and a slew of other fantastic acts, and curated Infinity Cat’s famed Cassette Series.
Today, we're excited to debut a track from Casey's new solo project, Greatest Champion Alive, which crystallized during a trying time. The band’s bio reads that Casey “started Greatest Champion Alive while he was recovering from brain tumor surgery last year. The project moved around in different wobbly forms until it all made sense while he was touring in Japan, alone in a hotel room. He put the songs together, sent them to some of the best musicians he knew, and came out the other end ready to blast what he’d been working on." He has now decided to loop us in on the fun.
"Same Light," the first single from Greatest Champion Alive, is a funky pop odyssey that has the potential to become a total earworm, its punchy keys making way for Casey's gentle voice. The song also has strong basslines that keeps the song afloat on a pillow of cloudy grooves. "The more warped I could make the keyboard sound, the further behind the beat the hi-hats were, the better it felt when I’d listen back,” Casey told AdHoc over email. He also gave us some hints about the lyrics: “It’s just about the differences in people but ultimately what ties everyone together in the end. Crazy stuff ya know, lights and things, bing bang bosh.” This song’s warmth and fuzziness will encapsulate you—check it out below.
Greatest Champion Alive opens for Homeshake on 2/13 at Market Hotel.
When an artist remixes a track, it can come out of the process bearing little resemblance to its former self. This new Yoke Lore remix by Blondage, however, uplifts the original without throwing away its meat. Blondage replaces the song’s dark synths with a more percussive tempo, adding on punchy drums and synth choruses that amplify the track’s underlying melody. It feels like a new pair of shoes, primed for the dance floor.
“Sometimes I'm afraid to play someone else's game for fear of losing or coming up short,” Adrian Galvin of Yoke Lore told AdHoc. “All I can do is me, I feel as though sometimes I'm relegated to my own instincts. This remix takes ‘Goodpain’ to the opposite side of the ring for me. It goes against all my better judgment and I love it.”
Yoke Lore plays with Vita & The Woolf and Elijah at Park Church Co-op on February 2nd.
This piece appears in AdHoc Issue 24.
Hether Fortune is drawn to the darker things in life. It’s a fascination you can trace to her teenage years as a self-described “angry punk,” or her work with her lovably gloomy rock band Wax Idols. Recently, she’s ventured into painting portraits, rendering friends, historical figures, and her fellow artists in pale and deep hues. Her paintings grapple with the moments of grief and joy in life, as well as the notion that the ghosts that haunt you can also provide inspiration. Ahead of her book release party on January 11 at Union Pool, where Fortune will read from her first collection of poetry, Waiting in Various Lines (2013-2017), she spoke to us about her portrait of Anaïs Nin, which appears on the cover of this month’s zine, and the therapeutic possibilities of painting. Fortune and her band Wax Idols will also perform with Future Punx and Desert Sharks on January 12 at Elsewhere.