Thursday, July 24, 2014

Chicago Reader on Wrekmeister Harmonies 7/30 Show

Wrekmeister Harmonies with Mark Solotroff and Alexander Hacke 

When: Wed., July 30, 10 p.m.
Price: free
Chicago sound artist J.R. Robinson has been creating music as Wrekmeister Harmonies since 2006, channeling the frigid, demonic spirit of black metal in slow-building, minimalist ambient music. Sometimes he plays solo, sometimes he lines up a collaborator or three, and sometimes he puts together an ensemble a couple dozen members strong for an especially monumental and grandiose sound—for his summer solstice concerts in Bohemian National Cemetery the past couple years, he’s recruited heavy-metal stalwarts from Indian, Nachtmystium, and Leviathan, to name a few. Lately most Wrekmeister Harmonies performances have been of “Run Priest Run,” a 30-minute slow burn of dark, spaced-out guitar and synthesizer, with Robinson in a duo with Mark Solotroff of Bloodyminded and Anatomy of Habit—a master of bleak sonic punishment himself. For tonight’s version, German experimental musician Alexander Hacke—a member of legendary avant-garde industrial band Einst├╝rzende Neubauten—will join the heavy drones on bass and electronics. Robinson and Hacke have performed together in Europe, but this will be the first and possibly only set by the trio with Solotroff. Hacke will undoubtedly add a gigantic, grim exclamation mark to the already crushing atmospheres. —Luca Cimarusti