Sheila Pell 11 a.m., Oct. 22
Horse Lords: Baltimore's microtonal math kraut
A careful combination of Bo Diddley and La Monte Young check into The Bancroft.
Baltimore’s jewel of the avant garde underground is coming to The Bancroft (9143 Campo Road, Spring Valley) on Saturday, October 18.
With their self-titled 2-song LP logging in at just over half-an-hour, Maryland’s Horse Lords features members of minimal African drum circle Teeth Mountain, wonky noise outfit Needle Gun, and sludgy growlers Pleasure Wizard.
“I thought it would be interesting to approach rock and roll as a sort of vernacular minimalism,” guitarist Owen Gardner said in an interview with the Baltimore Fishbowl, “coming out of the interaction of African- and Anglo-American folk traditions (I’m also a banjo player and a lot of what I play on guitar comes directly out of that), making use of the timbral resources provided by amplification and having a continuous relationship with other loud, repetitive musics, especially house and disco.”
Gardner describes Horse Lords as “a careful combination of Bo Diddley (especially ’70s Bo Diddley) and La Monte Young,” but their microtonal noodlings, ferocious saxophone, and ecstatic plateaus also lend nods to the likes of Skerik and Glenn Branca.
Throw in the churning math riffs of Don Caballero and then let them melt into whimsical, honking passages and howling wolf intervals to arrive at the dizzying mantra of “Wildcat Strike.”
The quarter-hour epic collapses around the 11-minute mark and reinvents itself in a make-believe free jazz joint buried deep within a grassy hillside somewhere in Scotland.
Horse Lords’ touring lineup includes two drum sets, modified guitars, sax, and Jenn Wasner from Baltimore indie-folk roots Wye Oak filling in on bass.
Local support from detuned no rock no wave experimentalists M&M Blues Band and Nothingful.
10:30 Horse Lords
11:30 M&M Blues Band