2 Pike Street in New York isn’t so much an address as much as it is an empty lot. Waiting here for a Chinatown bus is where I collected the lead singer of Crowhurst. Jay Gambit is one awesome son of a bitch. Actually I love his mother, she’s not a bitch at all. Crowhurst is currently on their first world tour. On this night, August 22nd, they are headlining at Bushwick’s Palisades. Crowhurst may or may not be a name you know; cue your worst goddamn nightmare.
Backstage is hot and alive – there’s too much equipment to move, we can barely hear one another, but there’s the cleanest public toilet I’ve seen in New York, EVER. “I try to have as little a plan as possible.” Jay tells me. “It happens more organically that way.” He never drinks before going on stage. He is totally focused on draining everything out of his mind. The stage is set, the crowd is ready, the room can just barely hold itself together. It’s Crowhurst’s job to utterly destroy. The track comes on and I couldn’t tell you when the first song ends or the last begins; the set is totally ambiguous.
Somewhere between the grungy kids chain smoking, and the dingy bar, I realize music isn’t the right word for what’s coming out of the speakers. This isn’t a happening, it is happening! It’s some form of disillusionment, a cacophony, anchored in experimentation. I can’t stop thinking about Jackson Pollock, alone in that studio, crafting a masterpiece somewhere between aesthetic and catastrophe. Crowhurst is not watched, it is not listened to. The sound consumes those of us there for it. It is unforgiving. The future of music is coming; it isn’t what it once was. Something shifts and the wall of sound changes, looping over and destroying the noise before it. There is no inside.
It is too easy to dismiss and yet, it is not to be believed. The performance is seen, it is heard, and none of it can be undone. It will stick.
The set’s done and all Jay wants is a pizza and a diet coke – he’s a simple dude. Before the show I thought I had questions. Now all I want is to listen. Tangible solutions, simple in lifestyle – Jay is no fool. He understands what he’s doing and he loves every second of doing it. “There’s nothing else for me to do, I’m just trying to be myself.” Adoration is what his work deserves. It’s ugly and totally unconventional. Sounds generated through laptops and iPad’s machines with a million nobs that no one should have to understand and photos of throbbing erections that have been converted into sound. Imagery becoming sound is what we heard tonight, and the collision of that realization as I watch him scarf down pizza. Fuck Mozart, I couldn’t make this shit up.
Crowhurst is currently working on a new album. Click here to hear some sneak peaks and to check out Crowhurst’s entire collection. Jay’s mother approves. You’ve been warned!
Efrem Zelony-Mindell is an artist who lives in New York. For more of his work click here …
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