Justice Yeldham, Housefire, Clang Quartet, Actualia | Nightlight | Clubs & Concerts | Indy Week
This is a past event.

Justice Yeldham, Housefire, Clang Quartet, Actualia 

When: Wed., Aug. 10, 9 p.m. 2016
Price: $8



The history of outsider art contains a particular strain of work by those who use their own bodies as living tools to set out for new, outlandish frontiers in performance. This style has existed for decades, but popular examples include the sixties and seventies performance art of Chris Burden and Günter Brus, which tested the agonizing limits of self-abasement. In the eighties, Japanese noise acts like Hijokaidan and The Gerogerigegege included bodily discharges in notorious exhibitions. Or there's the Boredoms' Yamataka Eye, who didn't eat for three days before the band's first show and jammed out a set of hopelessly pained moans, the only sounds he could physically create.

Lucas Abela exists in this vein. Under several monikers, Abela has employed many homemade and found objects—trampolines, vinyl-needle gloves, samurai swords, to name a few—into shocking configurations for his sound worlds. His premier tool for Justice Yeldham, his best-known project among the international noise underground, is his own face. The setup is simple, if highly disorienting. He contact-mikes a jagged cut of plate glass and suctions it to his mouth with K-Y Jelly. Then the fun starts. He works the glass with his mouth and hands, blowing into it to create a cacophony of discordant sounds and often cutting his face in the process. Blood and lube fly everywhere, creating a spectacle that's better seen than described.

It would be easy to label what Abela does as thoughtless GG Allin imitation, or worse, Jackass-style stunt shockery. But either assessment would be doing Abela's art a disservice. He's an oddity, to be sure, but he's a clever, self-aware artist through and through. People with weak stomachs should stay home, but Abela's stop in Chapel Hill is a chance to see something truly weird and unclassifiable, even in a world where those words get bandied around a lot. The weapons-grade sonics of Housefire, the spirited Christian noise of Clang Quartet, and Actualia's harsh drones open. —David Ford Smith

9 p.m., $8, www.nightlightclub.com

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