The Satellite was never a venue I could pigeonhole for any particular genre. You may wander in and see a dream rock quintet, or even a mystical performance art piece, and possibly both on the same night, as it was this past Tuesday. Glitter Trails opened up for Francine Thirteen, covering both ends of the spectrum of new age art, and leaving attendees with a lot to think about when the lights finally came up.
Though Glitter Trails is officially a project of Kerri Stewart solo, she had four band members playing behind her at the Satellite. They packed a fuzzy punch, guitars and bass working in tandem while Stewart’s angsty lyrics came from her gut. The band seemed aloof, like any great shoegaze act, and the audience seemed to take their lead by not moving much to the music, though were enough bouncing rhythms to go around. Times like these I hate the reputation LA has among music fans.
The tone changed dramatically once Francine Thirteen stepped onto the stage. It was a full production: two wooden female bust figurines and a smooth mineral sat atop a small card table, and other props lined the stage. Her accompaniment included a folk harp and a synthesizer, though she played neither; instead she was our guide for the odyssey underway. Francine Thirteen was showcasing her latest conceptual project which re-imagines the Biblical creation story from a feminist perspective, and the symbolism embedded in the live experience makes it feel like an even greater spectacle. At one point, she took handfuls of sand from a bowl perched at the front of the stage to anoint one of the figurines, and later herself, and then she used feathers to gently brush it away. Every movement she made felt important, even without the context of the project.
For a blind take on her performance, listen to all of Francine’s work on Soundcloud; for all the visual aspects, you’ll just have to wait until she comes back to town. Grimy Goods had the pleasure of debuting “The Huntress” last month, which is only a taste of what we will hear on her new Lust Heals EP, and that should be coming soon. New music means new tales of empowerment, and more fodder for the live ritual. It’s all going to be well worth the wait.
by: Zoë Elaine