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ISC closes its first week of September programing with a deep dive into the music of Arther Russell.
The In Sheep’s Clothing Residency at Neuehouse Hollywood is nearing its official close on September 23rd, and we’ve been hard at work programming special sessions for these last few evenings of summer. The entire ISC team are big fans of Arthur Russell, and though his music has found eager audiences posthumously, there’s still a lot of room to explore. We’ll be sharing a deeper dive into his personal discography and his collaborations to offer even more context to why he is beloved by many. There are still a few spots available for the session this Saturday September 4th, so make sure to RSVP now to secure your spot.
It’s hard not to wonder if filmmaker Phill Niblock and sound engineer Steve Cellum knew they were capturing an important moment in history when they recorded this 1985 solo performance. Russell spent most of time in his studio composing a seemingly endless catalog of tracks, a large portion of which were never finished due to his obsession with perfection. Even still, he was sought after by the likes of Larry Levan, Brian Eno, David Byrne and Philip Glass for his uncanny sixth sense of finding new musical terrain to anchor into.
Few videos exist of his live shows, but this one captures Russell in such a penetrating simplicity with the cello, an instrument he played since he was a child. His perfectly pitched voice croons and howls on a few tracks from his record “World of Echo.” Filmed on a single phosphor-tube color camera, the extreme close ups and washed-out color gradient matches the ethereal mood that Russell’s music famously inhabits. This perfect melodic meditation possesses a spiritualized quality to it that will ease the anxiety out of your bones and into a safe world of harmony.