PHNW Fest Preview: Taskmaster

When I wrote about Mass Marriage yesterday, I commented on how still Mel Paget looked as she performed. That same thought came to mind as I was watching this clip from a 2008 performance by her fellow British Columbian, Taskmaster. Brother man just stands there and lets the music do the talking. Tonight, though, it finally hit me why I find that so surprising.

My introduction to pure noise music was, like many small town denizens I’ve spoken to, via an episode of 120 Minutes that Thurston Moore hosted back in 1994. Between showing whatever flavor of the month alternative rock MTV was touting back then, he showed clips of some of his favorite musicians of the time, including Masonna and Harry Pussy. It seemed perfectly natural and right to me to see these players attacking their instruments and themselves to wrench an unholy racket out of them. The connection between the music and the body was made complete.

This is not to put either Mass Marriage or Taskmaster down, mind you. This is me admitting my own ingrained bias about this sort of music and something that I’m going to likely have to remove from my thinking when I’m at the festival in a couple of weeks. You move or don’t move, people, just keep bringing the ruckus.


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