Letter 15: April 26, 2022

annette lemieux

Since I first introduced my want to discover a larger sphere of cultural topics, I’ve been pondering on which to deal with. I used to be all the time into the music of my time, particularly experimental voices and kinds as they got here to me by way of buddies and thru in style media like magazines, radio, and MTV. I used to be an avid follower of the present “120 Minutes” that aired each Sunday night time at Midnight from 1986 (the yr I graduated from highschool) till 2000, after I had stopped watching MTV as a result of most of its unique programming has been changed by so-called Actuality TV. School was an excellent place to come across new music, or individuals who felt passionately about among the bands I already knew, having a extra in-depth involvement with their music and cult of persona. My faculty additionally ran a tiny little radio station, with a sign barely sturdy sufficient to go past the gates of the faculty, however everybody we knew was listening. It was simple to get on the schedule. The blokes who ran the station have been all in bands and so had additional data to share. Stuff I had hardly ever ever heard of. Nevertheless it opened my eyes to a lot. XTC, Pixies, Smiths, Pleasure Division, all of the 4AD Data bands like Throwing Muses and Clan of Xymox. Reggae. Ska. Punk. Like I mentioned, among the identical, however way more in-depth, way more of a shared neighborhood of values by way of music, particularly by way of musicians. My faculty was north of Boston, and Boston had a music scene of its personal, the place sure developments that might by no means take maintain in New York had absolute traction. Issues like Ska. Sure blends of up to date Punk. My favourite place to take a look at new music was Newbury Comics in Harvard Sq., which was situated on this mini-mall known as The Storage, which additionally housed my favourite cafe, The Espresso Connection, which served Curried Rooster Salad and large salads and huge French Press pots of espresso. One may hang around without end and eat and browse. They even let one graduate pupil hold his books on one desk after closing. He regarded like he was busy with the longest of all dissertations, stretching into infinity. Newbury Comics was launched to me by an older pupil who was obsessive about the bands I talked about right here, it wasn’t an enormous retailer, however the choice was solidly New Wave, Punk, Ska, and so on. They offered large posters of the bands, and had a DJ sales space the place you might request that they play a file you wished to purchase. It was an excellent place to see who your friends have been in the identical music scene. It’s since moved to a streetside location.  

Arcade Fireplace. Courtesy The New York Occasions 2022

As of late I’m very actively exploring as many bands as potential. Via Spotify I’ve entry to an infinite monitor of them. I at the moment have 435 pages adopted. This may increasingly appear extreme, however it has to cowl all my musical pursuits. I really like Various, Blues, Jazz, Classical, Punk, Steel, Flamenco, the checklist goes on and on. I’ve rediscovered the bands of my youth of their up to date guises, and outdated bands I by no means knew as a result of I needed to know somebody who owned their data or heard them at some membership. I bear in mind after I used to hang around at an area cafe, and no matter music I heard there with any regularity, I ended up shopping for the CD to pay attention at house. Typically a sure music can be so in style that it might be taking part in wherever I went. It might seep into my consciousness. I might stay up for listening to it once more. Now I solely must open the app and press play.

Present obsessions embrace The Idles, Arcade Fire, and 9 Inch Nails. Additionally numerous Jazz like Charles Mingus, Eric Dolphy, Singer/ Songwriters like Mark Geary, who I knew within the late Eighties when he was a younger waiter at Cafe Orlin within the East Village. Additionally current music from outdated favourite bands The Pixies, Depeche Mode, Killing Joke, and extra. I promise to enter depth extra in future posts.  


Some present exhibits I wished to advocate embrace a conceptual photographer and a painter utilizing scrims and printmaking impressions to counterpoint the gestural course of. Although I often restrict my suggestions to underknown artists it’s with some pleasure that I not too long ago found new work on view by Annette Lemieux, an artist whose work has been difficult assumed perceptions for many years. Her present solo exhibition at Mitchell Innes & Nash, 534 W twenty sixth St, is on view by way of Might 27, 2022. The opposite is Stephen Maine at Hionas Gallery, 94 Walker St, on view by way of Might 7, 2022. Final however not at all least I wished to plug a that present I’m internet hosting on my web site Gibson Contemporary for a gifted artist it is best to know extra about. “World Views” presents a collection of work by Sheila Lanham which are culled from antiquated encyclopedias, whose various but badly printed pictures impressed these surreal masterworks. On view by way of 10 pm on Might 10, 2022.

stephen maine

See you again right here quickly with new essays! AND new letters each two weeks!

David Gibson