EVENT: SHAMBALLA 2
featuring: NELS CLINE vs. DEVIN SARNO, NOT BREATHING, BASSLAND, CHOWDERHEAD, GLEN BACH, & DANIEL BREMMER

DATE: October 23, 1999
VENUE:Costa Mesa,CA

REVIEWER:
Lob


Well as the story usually goes.. sequels are, for the most part, nothing as special as thier original namesake. I wasnt able to attened the original Shamballa that happened in 1998.. but all year i heard about it.. how incredibly intimate and special it was.. how the music and the food just flowed all night for a truly unique happening... So, i was very excited to hear of this 2nd gathering happnening.. it was "limited" ticket sales.. to i got mine early.. the day of the show came and i was really excited.. i hadnt seen Not Breathing in a year or so, and i had only seen Nels & Devin once before, seperatly.. and Bassland is always fun..so i was into it and looking forward to a fun night.. when we arrived we found out that the food wasnt ready yet.. so they werent allowing anyone to enter the place yet.. so we had to wait outside in the cold october air for about 20 mins.. and then they started to let people in.. soon all of the tables and chairs were filled up and there was only room left on the floor.. it is very hard to eat Indian Food while sitting on the floor holding your place.. the rice keeps trying to escape from you.. Daniel Bremmer or Chowderhead were at the DJ booth, i really cant remember which one was spinning first.. it was very ambient and relaxing.. it was cool.. first up to perform was BASSLAND, Alex & Stuart were totally wonderful.. they were relaxed and ready to play.. they filled the little Indian restaurant with a great vibe of african rhythm interplaced with electronica wizardry.. Bassland was the sweetest performance of the evening. Next Chowderhead or Daniel Bremmer again played some more records.. as NOT BREATHING set up their equipment.. NB was a duo this performace consisting of Dave Wright and Drew Fitzgerald.. unfortunatly Dave was having problems with his sequencer, so it wasnt the full blown experience that Dave wanted to make happen.. they fiddled about in an ambient chaotic fashion for about 30 mins.. all the while attempted to make the sequencer function correctly.. and in the end just gave up. The electronic improvisation between Dave & Drew is pretty sweet.. so it was a nice set, but not what they had wanted to present to us. Glenn Bach was on the turntables next.. he laid a very differnt sorta of ambience down than the previous DJ's.. with alot more white noise in his sound.. lastly NELS CLINE vs. DEVIN SARNO.. Devin is the founder of a label called Win Records, and has his own solo bass project called CRIB, Nels is probably the most extrordinary guitar player in the Southern California area. The 2 of them occasionally play together to create some really HEAVY ambient groove dealing in sub-sounds and the layering of notes and feedback.. this set started really swell, and then the soundsystem freaked out.. and started to feedback with an awful LOUD heavy buzzing sound.. and the sound people/promoters did nothing for like 5 minutes.. and THEN they realized that whatever THAT sound was it wasnt supposed to be happening.. Nels and Devin just stopped playing. It was really unbearable to try to play softly while this grinding loud noise was on top of you, so they stopped.. the sound system was turned off.. and they started again without a PA. but by this time, they were not relaxed and controlled.. this time they played a 20 minute set of NOISE.. great and lovely noise.. heavy and vibrating white crashing noise.. it was swell.. BUT this was supposed to be an ambient show, wasnt it? So the night ended loudly.. the audience was uncomfortable and there was little room to move around in.. too many people in too small of a room and the intimate-ness was pushed out of it.. too many technical problems combined with that to make this night a fun outing.. but not a special experience as was hoped for. i hope the promoters at Peachfuzz learned a little and dont try to repeat the past again this next year. let it fade to memory.. do something new and differnent. -



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