I have been seeing postings for this infamous Tom’s Place underground house venue for a few years, and never managed to venture out there for a gig, Packed up the Decaywheels and blazed out, after walking around in the dark Berkeley streets for a few minutes, I found what was “Tom’s Place” My first (and only real) critique of the show/venue was they need a S I G N. I scrambled to find the address before neighbors began calling the 5 0 on an unsuspecting show goer in all black and a leather jacket, “were not In Oakland anymore” is all I kept saying. right, anyways, once I found the right spot, I was greeted with delicious snacks, a small but attentive and passionate audience (which is a delicacy in the bay area these days)- After years of seeing/playing/hosting underground oddball music/noise/sound performance in the mold encrusted basement, This clean warm home was a wonderful setting to soak up the warm, sputtering, slow heating tones and cassette pulses of Donkey Disk ‘s head honcho BLACK THREAD.
Thread offers up a shiny, sticky, moist,sputtering masterly level of subtle tape manipulations, climbing distant ringing tones, Ancient ships lost in the controller’s fog tunnel, send morsecoded hymns of cracking tapes, and choking whispers of feedback. The artist warmed and encrusted the room through magnetic fingers- encapsulated the controls, subtle pulsing loops, oozing and plushing the house speaker system into a dream wash of well crafted minimal compositions. Top notch, get the video here….
Next up was the CBD trio. Top notch free jazz undertones with dynamic and interesting improvisation from Chris Brown on piano and electronics, Donald Robinson on drums, and Biggi Vinkeloe on reeds. Subtle, well done free jazz with an ear for space, dynamics and tension. All flowed like a brook of subtle percussion, intense piano hits and swelling dynamics. Not my genre forte but these cats are clearly well versed in the game.
A great and unique show overall. check TOMS PLACE happenings in the future. Come help on the jigsaw puzzle.