When Lisa and I exited the Ruby Room, we couldn't decide between triple espressos or permanent bunks in Titicacaman's parallel universe. With the mildly strangled, dreamily idiotic vocals of an erotic asphyxiator, he took us far beyond the common boundaries of a concert. Apocalyptic, primitive, and original video images were combined with field samples and rhythmic recordings upon which Radulovich's live vox shimmies like a shaman. And this is a case when "live" unveils the power of digital + organic + stacks of amplification: "Good Good" (from Vertigo at Lunchtime) takes on a jarring fierceness, with the African/industrial bass line cranked so deep, the back of my seat feels like a chair massager.
The multimedia experience is somewhat similar to that of a "feelie" (Brave New World). But Radulovich dodges manipulation with hilarious introductions, as happens with "Rainbow Moo Moo." The song, purportedly inspired by a neighbor's mail-checking attire, has me crying with laughter. Who would have thought the contents of one man's psyche could produce cosmic giggles without the ingestion of acid or mescaline? Or that hip-hop could be spouted by a Chilean tweaker; i.e., "No Hay Que Preocuparse Por Nada"?
Radulovich deftly portrays a prophet with a match to his ass and a fount of urgent messages. Only Harry Smith's Heaven and Earth Magic (a seminal experimental film of hieroglyphics and visceral psychologica) provides a point of reference. Smith's work is more occult than Titicacaman's ephemeral, ambient collage, which is housed in an ingenious kaleidoscope of techno, industrial, pop, and trance, with Hispanic miscellanea.
The fun isn't in analysis but in relaxing and accepting the marrow-shaking ride, which may be too much for those who need familiar boxes or who are prone to psychotic breaks.
Concert: Marcelo Radulovich (aka Titicacaman)
Show date: December 16, 2009
Venue: the Ruby Room
Seats: front and center