[photos by PSquared Photography]
Since 2011, Alan Licht has been playing guitar in Lee Ranaldo’s backing band, The Dust. For someone normally associated with the downtown No Wave and Minimalist set, The Dust has been an outlet for Licht to play song-oriented guitar rock. His recent album, Currents, splits the difference between experimental and rock music, blending minimalist and melodic solo guitar work into one of the most compelling solo-guitar records of the last few years.
Last week at Saint Vitus, opening for Rangda (that recording here), Licht devoted most of his set to tracks off Currents, adding a special cover that he has only recently begun playing solo. Openers “Riding on the S’s” and “First Love, Haleema” recall Licht’s guitar work with The Dust, and accomplish what even the most seasoned guitar players have difficulty doing: creating a narrative without words. Those tracks are followed by “Raw Deal” and the album-closer, “(Thems the) Breaks,” which despite their titles manage not to sound like downers.
For his closing piece, Licht looks back to his performance at the 2004 No Fun Fest (where he and band were billed as Alan Licht’s 1970), for a fifteen-minute explorative composition based on The Stooges’ “1970.” What begins as an earnest cover with that most-recognizable riff, wanders into a thematic meditation on that tune before returning back to the original. While I normally expect some audience chatter to seep in to a solo guitar set, in this recording you can almost feel the crowd’s collective breath held for the length of Licht’s set. The performance of this Stooges—and Licht—classic tops off an already excellent set.
I recorded this set from our usual location at Saint Vitus, the room mics combined with a board feed from FOH Nick. I mixed those two sources, favoring the room sound. The quality is outstanding. Enjoy!
Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC]
Stream the complete show:
Exclusive download hosted at nyctaper.com
Recorded and produced by Eric PH
Soundboard (engineer: Nick) + AKG C480B/CK61 (PAS) > Roland R-26 > 2xWAV (24/48) > Adobe Audition CC (align, mixdown, compression, normalize, fades) > Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, exciter) > Audacity 2.0.5 (downsample, dither, tracking, tagging) > FLAC (16/44.1, level 8)
01. Riding on the S’s
02. First Love, Haleema
04. Raw Deal
05. (Thems the) Breaks
06. 1970 [The Stooges]
Support Alan Licht: Buy Currents via VDSQ