Thrift Trader manager Keme Chambers and her “Instrument of Disaster”
2947 El Cajon Boulevard, San Diego
Whether or not drivers are visually disturbed by the strobe light punctuating Hirsch the Machine Hirsch’s performance, few of those passing the El Cajon Boulevard/30th Street intersection are likely to pin it to Thrift Trader’s inaugural “exposition.” Just inside the front window, on a four-foot-high platform, noise musicians are performing to a crowd of mannequins, stacked vinyl, used clothing, and human beings.
The show’s as per-usual as a Noise showcase can get: Nothingful alternates obscure covers with tabla-influenced, breakneck guitar precision. M.J. Stevens laces a backwords recording of Colette reading “The Cat” through effected electric guitar and sporadic percussion. XR explodes offstage with an amusingly ineffectual outburst spiked by halfway b-boy leg hoists as he attempts to balance his midsection on an orange. Store manager Keme Chambers’s rather macabre noise debut consists of spoken word channeled through her homemade “Instrument of Disaster.”
Chambers is on hiatus from culinary arts studies at West City “...to work on my career at Thrift Trader. When we opened this location in June, 2013, and I saw the stages prebuilt into the store, I knew expositions would happen. So when all the businesses on the block opted into Boulevard Nights, I decided to host Royal Hearts. We’re in the middle of North Park, an area known for cultural diversity and creative minds — the location is perfect. With Boulevard planner Beryl Forman, I’ve discussed ways to help the city fall in love with what we call the ‘Showcase Block.’”
- Thursday, March 27, 2014, 6:30 p.m.
2947 El Cajon Boulevard,
“The store also hosts an open mic — all day — on Tuesdays. We’ve only had one performer, who goes by Fast Heart Mart — he played an amazing set. More events are in the works — ‘Take Back the Alley,’ another Boulevard Nights, and a new, monthly spoken-word, music, and performance event. Honestly, I’d love to see David Bowie at Thrift Trader. I realize that’s unrealistic. So, besides that, I’d be more than happy to watch someone play the saw.”
Starve Theater, a monthly series for featured and open mic music, spoken word, and performance art, launches at Thrift Trader on Thursday, March 27, at 6:30 p.m.