Video-collage tapestry at its finest
(October 1st, 2016) Jack Dangers and Ben Stokes of Meat Beat Manifesto were in prime form as they swept through Texas September 30th (Dallas at Club Dada) and October 1st (Houston at Numbers), after having played Cold Waves V (Chicago at Metro). This being a 4-date mini-tour, their next live show is on October 21st in San Francisco at DNA Lounge. My wife and I made the trip from California to Houston for the Numbers show on October 1st. We met up with a few longtime MBM Zombies listserv and Facebook friends (Felicia, Isaac, David), and had the opportunity to meet with Jack just as Clock DVA ended their live set. We shared a few words during their post-show gear tear-down as well as in the parking lot as they prepared for the trek back to NorCal.
MBM’s live set was nothing short of jaw-dropping—their signature heavy bassline’s, visual content smorgasbord and beat-driven onslaught of reworked tracks have kept the duo of Dangers and Stokes at the top of their game. A translucent video screen located in front of the duo displayed video-collage tapestry at its finest. Elsewhere in the venue, two large screens on either side of the building displayed additional accompanying visuals. Musical tracks and video clips sampled and crossed each other as they dipped back and forth through MBM’s almost 30-yr history. Mark Pistel masterfully managed the soundboard from behind the crowd—his support on the tour makes the sonic fury of Meat Beat all the more impacting. And in no particular order, MBM performed the following pieces:
“Sound Innovation” | “Guns N Lovers” | “Helter Skelter” | “Radio Babylon” | “Nocebo” | “Luminol” | “Assassinator” | “Original Control Version 1 & 2” | “Still Falling” | “Prime Audio Soup” | dense noise intermission | “I Got The Fear” | improve track | “It’s The Music” | “Drum Lesson” | “We Shall Destroy You” | “Penultimate Bass Test”
2016 Tour EP :: Chiseled and Chilled
MBM also released a 3-track 2016 Tour EP featuring “Falling Upright 1-3,” a 3-piece suite that takes a spin around chiseled and chilled breaks, jazz, bass, techno, and dub. “Ear Lips,” perhaps my favorite of the pack, rips through gritty staccato beats, disjointed bleeps and incomprehensible yet addictive vocodered voices and a powerful “Ear Lips” chorus line sung by Jack himself. “Forced to Lie” harks back to MBM’s earlier roots, the crisp breakbeats, bass drop and jazzy, downtempo groove are intoxicated bliss.
These live shows being just a teaser for what lies ahead, Jack informed us that a full-length is underway—seeing a release around March or April 2017—and a more comprehensive tour will follow. Do not miss MBM live in their San Francisco hometown October 21st at DNA Lounge!