1131 S. Broad Street,
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Holy Fuck

Holy Fuck


Fri, July 22, 2016

Doors: 7:30 pm / Show: 8:30 pm

The Boot & Saddle

Philadelphia, PA


This event is 21 and over

Holy Fuck
Holy Fuck
Holy Fuck took the world by surprise around 2005 because there was just nothing like them—a hardcore thrift-store found-object punk band with a relentless commitment to rhythm and a sense for atmosphere better matched to a close encounter of the third kind than a simple rock concert. Think Einstürzende Neubauten re-inspired by Fela Kuti with Brian Eno working as keyboard tech and every channel on the mixer set to max power. It was the best ride out there while it lasted, up to and including their 2010 full-length Latin, recorded largely in too-brief breaks while on the road. That album cemented Holy Fuck’s sound and reputation for unapologetic instrumental noise but at the end of yet another insane touring cycle, it was time to take a break … which turned into a hiatus … which turned into a chance to explore other projects and production work. (Like the bands Lids, Dusted and Etiquette, or production for Metz, Alvvays and Viet Cong.)

They’d been moving faster than they’d ever expected, especially after a 2007 sophomore release that came close to securing Canada’s prestigious Juno and Polaris Music Prize. (Not to mention festival slots at All Tomorrow’s Parties, Glastonbury, Coachella and more—plus Lou Reed said they were the best band he’d seen at SXSW.) The strategy was just to stay busy, says founder and noisemaster Brian Borcherdt, but soon they started to feel like Indiana Jones running from that boulder: “He had to step aside and let things settle!”

But there’s nothing Indiana Jones does better than the shock reveal, is there? And so in 2016 Holy Fuck suddenly announced the release of Congrats, a surprise full-length two years in the making that is by any scientific measure their holiest fuckiest release ever: “When you’re sitting still in a van and staring out the windows, you start to dream about all the other things you want to do,” says Borcherdt. “This album is exactly what we couldn’t do then.”

Checking into a “proper” studio, rather than the barn in rural Ontario where most of Holy Fuck’s records were made, Congrats was recorded by the same lineup that recorded Latin: Borcherdt, Graham Walsh, Matt “Punchy” McQuaid, and Matt Schulz. As they worked, they discovered that Congrats was a process of refining things, Walsh says—both physically and philosophically. Their ad hoc arsenal of low-budget hi-tech toys has been streamlined down to what he calls the nervous system of the band: “What gets run through our system is the seed of the idea for our music, and the system is what we play. This record is almost a beginning—the first stage of a new way for us.”

So consider those previous albums prelude to Holy Fuck’s true breakthrough, and recognize Congrats as the moment when Holy Fuck take the chaos and craziness (and charm) that have always been at the heart of their band and not so much control it as concentrate it. Now they’re heavier, wilder, leaner, sharper, more daring and more unpredictable than ever before, on fire with the power of inspired outsiders like Suicide, Silver Apples, Can, Mission of Burma or the Monks or even Sun Ra, says Borcherdt, whose pursuit of his own kind of musical purity is exactly what Holy Fuck are after. Yes, it took them a few years, which in 2016 is supposed to be the career suicide, but they took that time to take chances. “We were told we did everything wrong,” Borcherdt says now, laughing—but really Congrats is the sound of a band doing absolutely everything right
DOOMSQUAD is psychedelic electronic dance music from Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

In 2010, what began as sandpaper-cheesegrater folk music swiftly shifted genres as siblings Trevor, Jaclyn, and Allie Blumas began to explore trance and electronic beat making. Their shared fascination with dance culture, rhythm, and the unknown, along with their lifelong immersion in the arts, began to manifest as a collective ethos. Before long, DOOMSQUAD had mushroomed into a full-scale art project.

The band’s debut LP, Kalaboogie, was a self-recorded album made in the woods of Northern Canada. Released in 2014 on Toronto label Hand Drawn Dracula, Kalaboogie was a meditative survey of the Canadian landscape. Desiring connection with a national dialogue, the album was an explicit attempt to create uniquely ‘Canadian’ music by drawing on modes and myths from the wilderness.

Since then, DOOMSQUAD have continued to explore new themes and forms of expression. 2015’s EP, Pageantry Suite, marked a deviation from the band’s typically dark and meditative sound. Disco synth tones flavoured with African-inspired beats contrasted more upfront vocals, and aggressive lyrics addressing misogyny, consumerism, and hollow artifice. Pageantry Suite was their first and so far only effort to have been recorded in a studio.

This year will see the release of DOOMSQUAD’s sophomore album, Total Time, out April 29 on Bella Union and Hand Drawn Dracula. Inspired by some of their favourite artists — Georges Bataille, Richard Tuttle, Tanya Tagaq, and Genesis P-Orridge — the band traveled to the New Mexican desert to write and record. Moving through their own circadian rhythms, they fell into aural harmony while experiencing the passage of time solely as beats per minute. Total Time is all time.

Sonically, DOOMSQUAD embraces their roots; on Total Time they offer dark, pulsating beats interspersed with hypnotic, incantatory jams. The album opens with the enticing dance of ‘Who Owns Noon in Sandusky,’ which was written to inspire the nakedness in us all, a song to wake up our inner clocks and reclaim our circadian time. ‘Solar Ass’ was written as a love song to a donkey, a song for paying respect to the smaller, underappreciated elements that carry us through our contemporary lives. The songs on Total Time are meant to lead you through a genderless experience of transition to owning time, losing time, and becoming timeless, while providing a platform for you to dance through your consciousness.

Upon returning home from New Mexico, the band continued to draw inspiration from the Toronto arts community, which is vast but extremely supportive and close-knit. Their friendships and connections led to some fortuitous collaborations, including one with Canadian avant-garde legend Mary Margaret O’Hara, whose otherworldly vocals grace ‘The Very Large Array.’ The driving, dirty bass lines, and analogue layers of effects come care of Graham Walsh (Holy Fuck), who produced and mixed the album.

The record features a number of other contributors: Mike Haliechuk of Fucked Up plays guitar. Industrial noise experimenter David Foster aka HUREN offers vocals on ‘Russian Gaze.’ Colin Fisher and Brandon Valdivia of free-jazz duo Not the Wind, Not the Flag bring instrumentals.

Crucial to the album are galactic twin brothers Josh and Jesse Hasko, who use their near psychic proclivities to create spatial and hauntingly psychedelic soundscapes as North America.

After years of traveling the US, hanging around in the Everglades, gay clubs, small desert towns, and deep forest encampments, happily submitting to wherever they broke down, the Haskos found themselves in New Mexico.

Having abandoned their respective disciplines of Fine Arts and Classical music, the brothers applied their experiences of a drop out existence to a band called North America. Touching on themes of violence, childhood, exhaustion with conventional American ideals, and the thin veil between spiritual worlds, the Hasko’s music is heavily influenced by dreams, UFOs, and the desert.

Over the years, the connection between DOOMSQUAD and the twins has deepened and this summer they’re combining forces: the Haskos have joined DOOMSQUAD, which will take this project furthur than it’s ever gone before.
Venue Information:
The Boot & Saddle
1131 S. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA, 19147