February 26, 2014

J.C. & Anphibius Make Their Memorials to ‘Uneasy Listening Music’ Available to Download

JC anph banner

 

Before Anton Sword, there was Anphibius – half of the NYC-based, Europe-trotting duo J.C. & Anphibius that crept across stages from 1999-2006 purveying their special brand of “Uneasy Listening” Music. Now the duo has made their music available again (oh no!) on Bandcamp.  https://jcandanphibius.bandcamp.com/

J.C. and Anphibius met in the frog pond of New York’s Lower East Side in the 1990s after seeing each other play in their respective bands Glim and Individual Fruit Pie. After a shy courtship they elected to croak in unison, and so began to write newly hatched songs of love found and mislaid. From 1999 to 2006 the duo wove and spread their melodic but minimal skein of sound across the Atlantic, where it caressed both shores several times, triggered some delicate ripples, and slowly sank beneath the waves without a murmur. It left in its tiny wake only a hush, a sigh, a small puddle on a table, and 3 CDs.

J.C.‘s fetishistic tales of love, lost love, and self-love combine a fragile melancholy with a naughty wit. Anphibius’ music is sometimes mesmerizingly bare, and sometimes lush and poppy. Influences cited by awestruck audiences included Lee Hazlewood, Burt Bacharach, Erik Satie, Leonard Cohen, Carole King, and Jarvis Cocker.

The duo’s strategy of presenting songs in their most honest, naked form leaves plenty of space for listeners to contemplate their own sins. Tender and sprinkled with sophisticated humor, the songs themselves make you feel as if you’re in your own sitting room sipping cognac.

After these eternal umpteenagers quit the field in 2006 (well, there was one wedding gig in 2008, to be completist), the duo split to begin new lives in Amsterdam (J.C.) and in New York under a new name, Anton Sword (Anphibius). But their unique mood remains preserved in this series of recorded specimens.

Experiencing J.C. & Anphibius may not change your life. The only guarantee is that every song will tell a story.

https://jcandanphibius.bandcamp.com/

September 3, 2013

Tour Poster/Dates – Europe Fall 2013

Anton Sword trio - Europe 2013 - 2

December 14, 2012

Dec 14 Show, Dystopian Ideas, Euro Tour Post-Mortem

Dystopian ChitChat

My recent pessimistic obsession with things ecological congealed last week into an idea for a dystopian science fiction movie/series: in the future, the population has exploded and all resources (food and fuel, which by then are basically the same things) are running out fast. However, habitable planets have by then been found in other solar systems. The race is on to transport humanity to these planets using the remaining fuel and food before it runs out and strands us on Earth forever. Simultanously, an alternative strategy is being pursued: staying on Earth, but shrinking everyone (using a new shrink-ray invention, of course) so that the ratio of population to resources improves. Of course, if this is done, we still have to contend with monstrous insects. And the evil few who stay unshrunk in order to lord it over the tiny new people. It could be a whole series! Go ahead, make the movie. I’m too lazy.

Dec/Jan Shows

Meanwhile, on planet Earth, Sword & Slave is playing a trio show Friday December 14 at midnight at The Church, the most excellent loft at 142 Manhattan Avenue (Brooklyn) that was once a pentecostal church or something like it. $5 gets you 5 bands: Sword & Slave, Ichicuts, Public Speaking, Sprinkles, and Martin Lucifer. Doors at 8:30. Also psychedelic visuals will be provided by B.A. Miale. Sword & Slave play at midnight.

Also!
Saturday Dec 22, 7:30 pm – playing a duo or trio set at Bowery Electric’s Map Room. 327 Bowery, NYC
Friday, Jan 11, 11 pm – playing a duo or trio set at Branded Saloon. 603 Vanderbilt Ave, Brooklyn (Prospect Heights).

European Tour Post-Mortem

I played several shows in Europe in October & November, all by my lonesome self, and I enjoyed playing solo and seeing the friends who turned up, as well as making many new ones:

Saturday Oct 20: Liege, Belgium: L’An Vert, with Belleclose – Liege turned out to be a lovely town with a new train station that looked like something from a 1960s French Sci-Fi movie. Belleclose, also known as Catherine, kindly took me on a tour of the charming old city, its huge flight of stairs to the old fortress/park, and its cafes. L’An Vert is a lovely club too, run and patronized by nice, cool people.
Thursday Oct 25: Bern, Switzerland: Cafe Kairo – Trina, Queen of Kairo, harangued me into reading Kinky Friedman, the Jewish Redneck Detective author. I’m still absorbing the shock. I slept and ate well in Im Klee, the B&B on Bern’s outskirts, which I recommend highly. Kiss the staff for me.
Friday Oct 26: Zurich, Switzerland: BundesHaus zu Wiedikon – Tom Rist kindly had me play at his other club in Zurich (other than Helsinki) and treated me to a tasty pancake and some whiskey. Frank and I discussed the joys of playing music in a band when it all goes well.
Saturday Oct 27: Longwy, France: L’Appartement, with Skatebirds – the Skatebirds and I performed the Stephin Merritt’s adorable song ‘San Diego Zoo’ together, and the crowd of Lorrainers there made me play “Here in the Hurricane’ again at the end of my set, even though I’d already played it at the beginning. Everyone danced. I also had some excellent political discussion with Metahri & friends.
Friday Nov 2: Berlin, Germany: Mandy’s – despite having to assemble my own makeshift P.A., which didn’t manage to fill the room of revelers with sufficient sound, I had a great time, as I always do at Mandy’s. I don’t think the other patrons or staff were too offended either. I kept Miss Koala up too late and got her too drunk.

Oh Yes And

Hurricane Sandy happened. Taking an excellent suggestion from a perceptive friend, i decided as a publicity stunt to donate all $ from any bandcamp sales of my EP or single ‘Here in the Hurricane’ (presciently written two years before) to Hurricane Sandy relief (The Red Cross, Humane Society, Foodbank NYC, and Occupy Sandy). So far several kind folks have downloaded the tracks and paid money to do so. Aside from the 15% that goes to Bandcamp, I guarantee that ALL of the revenue goes to charity, though the end of 2012. Donations have already topped $500. Here’s the link to the EP to download it: Here in the Hurricane (http://antonsword.bandcamp.com/album/here-in-the-hurricane-ep) .

Finally, I will return to Europe in the late spring or summer, and bring some other musicians this time. If you simply must have us play your club or ballroom or theater or livingroom, contact me at earworm@antonsword.com to discuss.

Don’t forget to ‘like’ the Facebook page for Anton Sword (https://www.facebook.com/antonsword) . to get more up-to-date updates to update yourself.

October 3, 2012

NYC and European Tour Dates Oct/Nov 2012

After a six-month hiatus, the full We Ours quintet reunites for a show at Brooklyn’s Union Hall, Thursday October 11, at 10 pm. Kristin “Dr. Fill” Mueller on drums, Julian “Flash” Maile and Michael Lawson on duelling guitars, and of course Gina Marie Rodriguez on bass. Come and say hi. The planet is spinning crazily through a dark cold void. Who knows when we will see each other again? And if you get bored, there is always food and indoor bocce (yes!) upstairs. We will play some new songs. Preceding us will be our friends The Snow at 9 pm and our other friends Roman Game & Ghostwise at 8 pm. Union Hall is in Park Slope, near the R,2,3,4,5 and Q trains, sort of. 702 Union St, Brooklyn. Admission is $8. If you come and tell me your favorite (or least favorite) song in the set and do so intelligently I will give you a free CD. And as I mentioned, if you hate music but just want to come to see friends, Union Hall has indoor bocce upstairs.

European Tour Dates:

I’m playing several shows in Europe this month, all by my lonesome self, and I very much look forward to saying hello to you at one of them. Besides the singing, drinking, eating, and moving equipment, the fun of touring is seeing old friends. I promise to play something you haven’t heard before. Here are the dates (all dates are also posted on the ‘shows’ page on this site):

Saturday Oct 20: Liege, Belgium: L’An Vert, with Belleclose. rue Matthieu Polain 4
Thursday Oct 25: Bern, Switzerland: Cafe Kairo. Dammweg 43
Friday Oct 26: Zurich, Switzerland: BundesHaus zu Wiedikon. Kalkbreitestrasse 33
Saturday Oct 27: Longwy, France: L’Appartement, with Skatebirds. 12 bis rue Victor Hugo
Friday Nov 2: Berlin, Germany: Mandy’s (Bierstube). 61 Reichenberger Strasse

After returning to New York, I will rejoin the duo that has become a trio, Sword & Slave, for another show at the fabulous disco/new wave/electro dance party VVYNL –
Monday, Nov 12: Brooklyn, USA: The Woods, with many other acts. 48 South 4th Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Other Problems and Solutions

I became unhappy upon hearing that there is a lot of elephant slaughter happening again in Africa. Elephants are like fascinating wrinkly people; should one kill them just to take their oversized teeth? I became pointlessly obsessed with the seemingly endless Presidential campaign for a while, then recovered. I began eight books but have only finished one. My dog got sick but seems to have recovered. So it was a tough few months, but I also was given a used bicycle and I rode it, which was fun.

Last but perhaps least, the ‘Here in the Hurricane’ EP is now available in PHYSICAL (gasp!) form from CDBaby.com here.