Tony Conrad plays this Saturday at White Flag Projects (4568 Manchester Avenue, 314-531-3442) as part of the New Music Circle.
Decades before Sunn O))), Sleep or Lightning Bolt pierced eardrums, Tony Conrad was already building dangerous music from extreme volume and repetition. Back when the Beatles sang about hand-holding, Conrad amplified his violin to accentuate its overtones and used clashing tunings to generate psycho-acoustic phenomena. Although his 1972 collaboration with Faust Outside The Dream Syndicate is now a pivotal document of Kraut-rock, the innovative Conrad is tragically unappreciated. His '60s works Early Minimalism Volume 1 only saw light in 1997, but the drought of recordings can be forgiven; unless your stereo can break 115 decibels, Tony Conrad's sounds are best witnessed in person.
Fun Fact: Around 1965 Tony Conrad moved out of an apartment and left his copy of Michael Leigh's book The Velvet Underground. John Cale and Lou Reed moved in, found the book and named their band.
Tony Conrad 7:30 p.m. Saturday, December 3. White Flag Projects, 4568 Manchester Avenue. $7 to $15. 314-531-3442.