host skull

Post-Gazette and Sound Scene Express weigh in on Host Skull's Destruction by David Bernabo

Pick up our new record here or tonight at 937 Liberty Ave for our release show.

 

Sound Scene Express

"For every jarring moment (like the distorted static buzz in the instrumental of “Form Destroyer,” and the punctuated, discordant ending of “No One Else”), there was a charming or cool one to match it (like the entrancing tribal rhythm and pretty acoustic guitar riff in “Novel,” plus wherever the warbling keys made an appearance.) If you have any particular love for the guitar, you’ll also appreciate how it’s used to its full capacity here. Driving, crunchy, punkish riffs; moody, mournful solos; jamming phrases and patterns that take melodic risks; all with varying levels of distortion and effects. This range is impressive, and crucial for creating the variety of moods Destruction evokes. And the consistent comfort of Bernabo’s distinct, slightly muted vocals are a connecting thread throughout."

"Nowhere does Host Skull more clearly deviate from the formulaic than with their percussion. It often dominates the musical landscape: shifting gears drastically within songs; pausing and attacking, repeatedly; each hit lining up exactly with a guitar or bass note. All this energetic, technically impressive activity (most concentrated in the rallying second track, “Animal Head”) is effective at keeping you on your toes. But it’s balanced with subdued, slower tracks, which still have their own standout moments of strangeness. The resigned melancholy of “My Possessions,” the wandering contemplation of “Dan in L.A.”, and the gorgeous, surprising ambient soundscape in the last half of the closer, “Big Tan”—all provide valleys relative to those higher-octane peaks."

http://www.soundsceneexpress.com/host-skull-subverts-the-expected-with-new-avant-rock-album-destruction/

 

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

"They used an outside engineer for the first time, and then back in Pittsburgh, Mr. Bernabo and guitarist Erik Cirelli “experimented with crafting guitar solos line by line, doubling or harmonizing each line as we went.”

Those guitars have some real bite on “Host Skull’s Destruction,” an atmospheric indie rock gem filled with angular melodies and intricate playing that brings to mind latter-day Wilco, Spoon, Pavement and Steely Dan.

http://www.post-gazette.com/ae/music/2017/07/27/Indie-rock-band-Host-Skull-plans-its-own-Destruction-David-Bernabo-Will-Dyar/stories/201707270007

New Releases: HSOB015 and HSOB018 by David Bernabo

HSOB015: DAVID BERNABO DB IN COLLEGE

A collection of recordings made during David Bernabo's college years from 2001 to 2004. (Released 4/19/2017)


 

HSOB018: THE REDUCTION (PERFORMANCE FILM)

Four dancers, three camera persons, and a musician perform The Reduction, an evening-length dance piece that attempts to alter time, the role of the performer, and the role of the audience. Featuring choreographer David Bernabo, bassist Darin Gray, dancers Ru Emmons, JoAnna Dehler, Lauryn Petrick, and narrator Lenka Clayton. (Released 4/25/2017)

Erik Cirelli & David Bernabo - Horrible Backbone by David Bernabo

Guitarist Erik Cirelli, who also plays in Host Skull, and I made a duo record. The limited edition CDR version is sold out, but digital downloads are available. 

Erik and I share thoughts about making the record on Recital, a new home for musicians to discuss music. 

MakerDate, Mine Factory Opening, and CDR by David Bernabo

I write this note to you while listening to the stream of the new Jim O'Rourke record - it is great, unique from his other song-based records, unexpectedly reverb-y, with an unexpectedly low mix on the voice, complex, harmonized, and just crazy good. I'm also making dinner. Slow cooking chuck roast that I froze a few weeks ago. Dehydrating rhubarb. Roasting squash. Quick pickling cucumber.

Anyway, three things are coming up this week. An art opening, an event with Host Skull-related activity, and MakerDate, where my newfound filmmaking skills will be auctioned off for a filmmaking date.

CDR Pittsburgh, 5/14, Space Upstairs

Host Skull has been working on our third record for a bit. We started a little over a year ago, and we are close to completion. We'll be presenting the first video at the CDR event. The song is called "Big Tan" and it closes the record. Here is some background info on CDR. Note: lots of folks will present works in progress. Should be interesting!

"CDR (Create, Define, Release) is an evolving multi-platform music project delivered by a collective of music producers, artists and thinkers passionate about creating opportunities to share the process of music production.

CDR sessions offer music makers the opportunity to submit their own songs (burnt onto CD, on a USB or uploaded in advance) then hear them played in a club environment over a superb soundsystem.

By getting a chance to publicly listen to their sonic works in progress, producers can identify any tweaks or development their songs could benefit from. They can also gauge people’s responses as well as discussing their tracks with others attending."

Live music at Space Upstairs
BYOB
$10

MakerDate, 5/16

Assemble, founded by my college-era and current-era friend Nina Barbuto, is a great gallery that has consistently engaged the community and brought "making" to the neighborhood through children's programs, interesting curation, and unique events. MakerDate is one of those unique events. It's a fundraiser, but you can bid on an experience. Get a private welding lesson from artist Dee Briggs. Make a zine with Maggie Lynn Negrete. And, um, hang out with me while making the FOOD SYSTEMS films, learn a bit about Adobe Premiere, and strategies for editing. Lots of people are donating their skills and there is a silent auction, too. Check out Nina on CBS!

The event is this Saturday, May 16. MakerDate Tickets

 

Mine Factory Opening, 5/17

A bunch of us have studios in 201 N. Braddock Ave, which is a building that is often referred to the Mine Factory building or, sometimes, the building that Stacyee Pearl's dance studio is in. Whatever you call it, the building houses the Mine Factory gallery and the tenants are having a group show on Sunday, May 17. The show is called NO VACANCY. The opening starts at 5pm and ends at 8pm.
 

Lastly, I'm raising some modest funds to cover the remaining expenses of the Food Systems film. By backing the project, you will ensure that you can see the films. Early previews have been very positive. So, I think you will like it. If you can help (even $5 gets you one of the films), I greatly appreciate it! Thanks! Back the project here: Food Systems Kickstarter

 

PALESTINIAN FILM FESTIVAL, 5/14-16, VARIOUS LOCATIONS

Also, while you are weighing your options with those selfishly-me-related activities, maybe you want to go to Conflict Kitchen's Palestinian Film Festival instead. 5 Broken Cameras screens Thursday night at Regent Square Theater. Divine Intervention screens at Melwood on Friday. And Saturday, 5/16 has a double feature with the short, The Dinner, and the long, When I Saw You, under the tent in Schenley Plaza.