Elephant 6 Holiday Surprise Tour: March 21, 2011 Knitting Factory – FLAC and MP3 Downloads + Streaming Songs

March 25, 2011
By


[Photo courtesy of EardrumNYC]

The Elephant 6 Collective is a unique force in modern American music, a merry band of collaborators whose psychedelic, Beatles-inspired songs continue to resonate with indie aficionados across the globe. If you aren’t up for seeing more than 10 bands in one place at one time, you should skip the E6 Holiday Surprise extravaganzas, because over their usual three sets in a given night, they will illuminate and educate you, as well as wear down the unready. This gig at the Knitting Factory was night one of three here in New York, and it gave immediate notice to the untutored that life in Elephant 6 land can be a little loopy. This loose-knit group of Athens, GA-based musicians has formed and splintered off into numerous bands, and the sets find the players rotating on and off stage, constituting a different band at each song. This show was a veritable psych-rock circus, with a giant self-playing organ, a trippy cartoon video interlude, a “coming of spring” game that consisted of various audience members trying to pierce a paper target with a tossed fake snowball, a giant snowman, and intense, unusual sounds. The various E6 bands – some of the better-known being Olivia Tremor Control, Circulatory System, and Elf Power, to name a few (oh, and of course, Neutral Milk Hotel whose reclusive frontman could be seen in the audience, but not onstage) – vary in their degree of pop sensibility versus psychedelic experimentation, but even the tamer E6 bands play with sound collages, obscure instruments like the theremin, and a playful, childlike sense of wonder.

For three full sets lasting almost three hours, the players treated us with some of the collective’s best-known songs: Olivia Tremor Control’s “Define A Transparent Dream,” Circulatory System’s “Yesterday’s World,” and Elf Power’s “The Well.” But there were more obscure numbers from lesser-known bands like the Gerbils and the late b.p. helium, as well as some new songs as well. It was an evening of the unexpected, a huge range of songs that is difficult to summarize. What was clear was that this collective whole is greater than any individual part. As they closed with a mammoth thirteen-minute version of Sun Ra Arkestra’s “Enlightenment” (most of which was played in the crowd directly under my mics), I couldn’t help but notice that these guys had put on a three-hour set and still seemed to be be having so much fun – and probably had another three hours left in them. As I said, Elephant 6 land is a loopy place.

I recorded this set with a four-microphone rig from our usual spot in the venue. Although the band’s engineer was a bit dissatisfied with the house mix, I think he was being a little hard on himself. With some of the room’s natural characteristics removed, the recording is excellent. Enjoy!

Special thanks to the Knitting Factory for their hospitality. Also, thanks to Southern Shelter (who recorded the Atlanta show) for their assistance with the setlist.

Stream “The Well”:

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Stream “Sail Beyond the Sunset”:

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Direct download of MP3 files [HERE]

Download the Complete show in FLAC [HERE].

Elephant 6 Holiday Surprise Tour
2011-03-21
Knitting Factory
Brooklyn, NY USA

An acidjack master recording
Recorded and produced by acidjack for nyctaper.com

Equipment: DPA 4021+Schoeps CMC6/mk41>Edirol R-44 [Oade Concert Mod] (24/48)
Position: Slightly ROC, at soundboard, DPAs ORTF, Schoeps 1ft split, pointed at stacks, approx 7.5ft
Mastering: 2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Audacity (EQ both sources, mixdown, set fades, tracking, smooth peaks, amplify and balance, downsample)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks

Set I [1:07:37]
01 When Father Was Away on Business [Major Organ and the Adding Machine]
02 Nothing’s Gonna Happen [Elf Power]
03 The Well [Elf Power]
04 Yesterday’s World [Circulatory System]
05 Karaoke Free [Elephant 6 Orchestra]
06 [banter]
07 Life Form (Transmission Received) [Major Organ and the Adding Machine]
08 Hideaway [Olivia Tremor Control]
09 Spiral Stairs [Elf Power]
10 [banter]
11 As Time Passed [The Gerbils]
12 [banter]
13 Lucky Girl [The Gerbils]
14 [banter]
15 Define A Transparent Dream [Olivia Tremor Control]
16 Hide In the Light> [Elephant 6 Orchestra]
17 Sail Beyond the Sunset [Elephant 6 Orchestra]
18 [banter]
19 organ instrumental
20 [banter]
21 [unknown – Music Tapes]
22 [banter]
23 Party With Me Punker [The Minutemen]
24 Temporary Arm [Elf Power]
25 The Opera House [Olivia Tremor Control]

Set II [1:04:42]
26 They Broke the Speed of Light [The Late B.P. Helium]
27 The Rabbit’s Ear [The Late B.P. Helium]
28 Out of the Water [M Coast]
29 Can You Come Down With Us? [Olivia Tremor Control]
30 [banter]
31 To All Who Say Goodnight [Elephant 6 Orchestra]
32 [banter]
33 Days Remain [Elephant 6 Orchestra]
34 The Lovely Universe [Circulatory System]
35 An Old Familiar Scene [Elf Power]
36 [banter]
37 Nothing For Sunday [Elephant 6 Orchestra]
38 instrumental
39 Majesty [The Music Tapes]
40 Glue [The Gerbils]
41 A White Sky [The Gerbils]
42 [set break]

Set III [44:00:00]
43 I Have Been Floated [Olivia Tremor Control]
44 Round [Olivia Tremor Control]
45 This Morning (We Remembered Everything) [Circulatory System]
46 [banter]
47 Two Skies [The Gerbils]
48 [banter]
49 Alcohol [The Kinks]
50 [banter]
51 Candy For Everyone [The Late B.P. Helium]
52 [banter]
53 Green Typewriters [Olivia Tremor Control]
54 [banter]
55 Enlightenment [Sun Ra Arkestra]

If you download this recording from NYCTaper, we expect that you will PLEASE SUPPORT Elephant 6 Records, visit their website, and support the many fine acts on their label by purchasing official releases (including at the Elephant 6 Store, coming soon).

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2 Responses to Elephant 6 Holiday Surprise Tour: March 21, 2011 Knitting Factory – FLAC and MP3 Downloads + Streaming Songs

  1. daaammmn
    March 27, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Great recording, amazing show. Thanks!

  2. Smintjes
    April 8, 2011 at 9:44 am

    Whoah! Thanks!

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