WL14 reviews: Gambletron @ Polish Combatants Hall – Feb. 15, 2014

Gambletron @ Polish Combatants Hall for WL14 - Feb. 15, 2014. Photo: Tom Beedham

Gambletron @ Polish Combatants Hall for WL14 – Feb. 15, 2014. Photo: Tom Beedham

By Tom Beedham
When Lisa Gamble first addressed those gathered at the Polish Combatants Hall on Saturday it made for what was likely the only moment throughout the artist’s entire set that made immediate sense to everyone in attendance.

“Hi, I’m Gambletron, and I’m gonna do this backwards and thank you before I do anything,” said Gamble, her voice crinkled by the static of the portable P.A. system she spoke through.

Backwards indeed. The way Gamble approaches music with her Gambletron project is less as a musician and more as an explorer of the relationship shared between space and sound. In fact, “backwards” might be too linear a descriptor for what Gambletron is.

As it was presented to Wavelength Music Festival, Gamble’s setup was an interactive noise environment that forced people to reconsider the conventional notions of a concert setting. Positioned on the floor of the hall itself, Gamble had arranged a myriad of boom boxes, a table of modified electronic toys, and even a knitted wire structure somehow modelled into an effective theremin of sorts.

Beginning as a screaming wall of discordant noise and feedback, the long-form improvised piece later evolved into a dance party-ready jam that, ahem, climaxed with a pretty selective sample of Azealia Banks’s “212.”

As curious as it was to most in the ranks, all the analogue electronic experimenting seemed to make a convincing argument suggesting a return to a world of rabbit ears—though alien and technologically “regressive”—might not be so bad.

Originally published by Aesthetic Magazine.

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About Tom Beedham

Tom Beedham is a Canadian writer and photographer based in Toronto, Ontario. His work focuses on independent culture, DIY communities, and their relationship to the mainstream, reporting on a spectrum of creatives that has ranged from emerging acts to the definitive voices of cultural movements. In addition to contributing regular features to AUX, Chart Attack, and VICE publications Noisey and THUMP, he has appeared on Daily VICE, and frequently reviews concerts, festivals, and new album releases for Canadian arts and culture monthly Exclaim!. He is also a co-organizer and curator of the seasonal inter-arts series Long Winter, for which he oversees an online blog and print newspaper-style publication, printed for distribution at each instalment of the event. He was also a DIY concert organizer in his hometown Georgetown, Ontario in the mid-2000s.

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