Q&A With New Bedford 4752 Festival Organizer Devin Byrnes

As the whole South Coast community is already well aware: a big rolling music festival –the 4752 Festival – is taking place this Saturday, October 19 in New Bedford. Devin Brynes, bassist in Picniclunch, organized the festival and I asked him a few questions in anticipation. See below. Dan Shea also had a discussion with Devin and you can read that awesomeness here.

GGG: The fest is taking place across 6 venues – can you explain a bit of the logistics involved and the selection of the venues? 

DB: Yeah so the event kicks off at 3:30 at Circa and continues into the late night hours eventually finishing at No Problemo Taqueria. Myself, band mates and friends will be leap frogging 2 different P.A’s from venue to venue. The set ups are all pretty punk rock style, so should go well. I called on venues in my community to be hosts, and across the board, they were very supportive and receptive. Finding host venues was actually one of the easiest things. All the host venues are run by people with vision and passion for New Bedford.

GGG: What is the artistic climate like in New Bedford? We haven’t been down there since Traphaus in 2015 and are curious how things may have changed since that time.

DB: So, musically speaking there isn’t a lot going on. Craig (who runs No Problemo) has been one of the biggest supports of local music and this event itself. He opens up his space to bands a couple of times a month. There is a pretty vibrant visual art scene here and a fairly new co creative center in the heart of downtown. For some reason, underground, cool shows don’t happen too much. The Traphaus leaving has left a bit of a void for weirder acts to have a place to play in town.

GGG: Have you run a festival like this before, if so/if not, were there any inspirations for putting one on? 

DB: I have curated a bunch of smaller shows over the years and back when I lived in Brooklyn, I put on a 2 day festival that was great fun, but a financial disaster. I have been talking about doing something like this in New Bedford for a few years now and, to add something interesting to the scene and to drive a lot of out of town talent to the city too. The only way it was going to happen was if I started booking it a long ways out, so that’s what I did. I think I started contacting people about this in June? This is all a bit of an experiment, but with so many talented people coming in and so many great people opening their doors, I can’t see it not being a successful day.

4752 Festival Coming To New Bedford On October 19!

A one-day Gonerfest of the North is coming to New Bedford on Saturday, October 19. 4752 Festival. Located about an hour drive south from Boston and 40 minutes south east of Providence, New Bedford has long been the home of a bevy of underground and eclectic (dare I say outsider) artists and bands. Remember the old Traphaus scene?

Devin from the great no-nonsense post-wave NB outfit Picniclunch has organized this doozy of a festival and here’s how it works: 13 musical acts perform in 6 venues. All the venues are within less than a mile so from 3:30 PM to 1 AM you can hop around, get some exercise, a bite to eat, maybe a libation or two, and see a lot of weird performances. More information forthcoming, but mark your damn calendars and get excited for what we do know:

Schedule:
Circa Vintage Wear – 204 Court Street
3:30 – Moist Boy (NB)
4:15 – Scare City (Worcester)

Alison Wells Gallery – 106 William Street
4:45 – Silent Fields
5:25 – Tal Vez (Western, Ma)
6:00 – Carl Simmons (NB)

Destination Soups – 149 Union Street
6:30 – Heavy Gaze (Vermont)
7:10 – Johnnie and the Foodmasters (Boston, Ma)

Solstice Skateboarding – 801 Purchase Street
7:45 – Baylies Band (NB)
8:30 – Hill Haints (Albany,NY)

Paradise McFee Gallery – 104 William Street
9:10 – Picniclunch (NB)
9:50 – Leap The Dips 

No Problemo – 813 Purchase Street
10:30 – Bunnies (Western, Ma)
11:15 – Lazertuth (NB)

Summer Flashbacks

The following are excellent songs to listen to this summer. They aren’t new or old.

Saralee – “Take What You Can Carry” – What might be the greatest Boston basement band of the early 2010s? Saralee is in the running, without any doubt. Stoned haze, half drunk High Lifes, and pungent mildew perfectly communicated with as little as drums, guitar, and vocals. Sara and Lee. I think I’ve called Saralee “memory music” and I wonder if anyone disagrees? This particular song is the most exemplary of my past descriptions. Sorry if you didn’t get a chance to see them in the old days, but not too sorry because you can close your eyes, too.

Wakes – “Widows” – Timmy hit a sweet spot of dynamite “bedroom pop” before that label became more associated with industry plants! A label in the UK was wise enough to release the Feral Youth LP. I’ve thought this album, this song, was like audio mumblecore. Emo, but not the shitty, whiny stuff. Anxious, superstitious, you know, your average 20/(now?) 30-something laments.

Rene Chambers – “Kathy Cross” – A local anthem has emerged! Like the two previous songs, this one is cloudy and introspective. The tale of Kathy Cross is familiar. She’s runnin away to upstate NY from the city. After a day, the guy is getting kind of worried because she hasn’t returned his calls. It turns out that her getaway was a legit vacation, not some existential escape from academia as he might have suspected. “She just wants to be somebody.” Always count on Rene Chambers (now an active band in the Boston area) for intelligent rock ‘n roll commentary/comedy on the young and confused.

NEW BOSTON WEIRDO ALBUMS OUT: BIRTHING HIPS / FAT SHUGGY

WEIRDO has been a musical term of endearment in Boston for decades but anyone attending shows, especially in our underground spaces, these days knows there are some real out there performers. Transcending rock ‘n roll motifs, deconstructing deconstruction itself, this stuff just about affords itself no description. Your average music writer will look for existing references and fuck I’ve been guilty of it myself… we all trying to comprehend and make sense of things, forgive me here. But here I present you with two fresh albums, from two names you might recognize, via shared line-ups, collaborations, friendships, etc, etc, etc: BIRTHING HIPS and FAT SHUGGY.

birthinghips

BIRTHING HIPS recently released their debut full-length NO SORRY. Nine tracks, nine instantly familiar numbers. In the best combo that I have seen, they combine what the ?????????????????? with noisy/dying guitar attacks, hardcore punk and children’s music. There are sour bubblegum moments and jazz beyond free moments. These triumphant contrasts, jeeze. Unreal.

FatShuggy.jpg

Not every music community has a Fat Shuggy. The entrail princess. I’ve seen Shuggy in quite a few incarnations probably dating back to one year ago. There is no performer that I have seen in that time that challenges the audience as much as Shuggy. Or dismembers them. Confusion and shock. But in the end, this is a musician that just does. With a variety of unorthodox instruments and voices and sometimes alone. It is not nicey nice. It is graphic, rated R. Experiments of noise and the spoken word. Revada Casah Enoy Reve is not something that anyone could have conjured up except for Shuggy, working in its own universe. Its own sound collage. I’m sure Shug could repeat these improvisations note for note, if Shug wanted to.

History Lesson Part III

“Mr. Narrator this is Bob Dylan to me.”- “History Lesson Part II” by the Minutemen.

One time somebody said to me “If you had a million dollars I bet you would use it to meet all of your favorite Rock bands like Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, etc.” I don’t know how this would work lol, but the point is like the idea of me being wealthy, meeting my favorite artists would be some sort of rare, extravagant concept. Well, it’s true Floyd and Zep are old faves of mine, but with the top bands I hold near and dear to me, I have met most of them, even if just for a few moments. I guess what I’m getting at here is that it fucking rules to be a fan of mostly underground music because chiefly it’s quality art, but also the privilege of seeing numerous fantastic performances and having the pleasure to possibly chat with the creators is not rare or foreign like it is for the Big Stars.

Whaddup ERS @ Night

Screw that ish (although it is great music to crank after late night concerts), here is the rap/hip-hop you gotta listen to:

Beanie Siegel – “The Truth”
Blackalicious – “Deception”
Booba – “Ecoute Bien”
The Crest – “Heart Shaped Box”
Daz Dillinger“On Some Real Shit”
Enur – “Calabria”
Geto Boys – “Gota Let Your Nuts Hang”
Ice Cube – “It Was A Good Day”
Lauryn Hill – “That Thing”
Mr. Lif – “I Phantom”
NWA – “Straight Outta Compton”
The Pharcyde – “Passing Me By”