|The musical play
Atomic Stoneage is a mixture of dance, performance art, political statement and general
abstract dissonance, with a thick post-industrial vibe and the sort of costumes that scare
children and pets. Gametone Mic and I (Hugh Mann) composed and performed the
"soundscape" (as it was called) giving each character a theme which we played
each time that character appeared.
The play was written and directed by the multi-talented Corina Vosse of the Collective Unconscious, which is an underground artist cooperative in NYC. The first performance was in an empty warehouse on the Brooklyn waterfront and the rest were on a Hudson River pier next to a dredged up old barge and with the sunset as a backdrop.
The Statue was a fetid apocalyptic Statue of Liberty, looking not verdigris but puke-green, dressed in rags, and holding a cage instead of a torch. At one point there was a motion to put a rat in the cage. And so on. The instrumentation is provided by Hugh Mann on jaw harp, drum and voice, and a sample of an opera singer from a Mozart aria.
The Sinomens were pixies who moved like mimes on amphetamines. They were the forces of Good etc. The music is Gametone Mic harvesting some clarinet played by Hugh Mann.
This was the Brutotron Henchmen marching music. The Brutotrons were Evil. At the beginning of the piece you'll hear a crinkling noise, which is a bag of beans squeezed in front of a microphone and slowed way down and reverberated. It was supposed to hint at the sound of an insect molting, which happened in the next scene. The other instruments are Hugh Mann playing tenor jaw harp, a sample of djembes from Les Ballets Africanes, and some thunder recorded from Hugh Mann's bedroom window.
After the Brutotron molts it proclaims its Inescapable Evil Dominance over the Sinomens in this musical speech. It was quite a sight, as the Brutotron character was a performance artist named Gecko encased in a twelve-foot long tube, wearting angry body paint and a metal cone-bra with flaming nipple torches which she repeatedly squirted with lighter fluid to keep ablaze. This piece was entirely composed by Gametone Mic using sounds recycled from the Brutotron theme.
The Sinomen wilt under the angry hot breath of the Brutotron, and this theme is played. This is another Gametone Mic piece, performed on the large gamechimes and manipulated with his sampler.
We played this while the audience took their seats, just to get them in the mood. This piece was recorded live, with Hugh Mann playing clarinet over a bed spontaneously created by Gametone Mic from snippets of the Sinomen theme.
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