The instrument has undeniably fallen from its once glorious heights. With the ascendancy of R&B and hip-hop as the genres preferred by the masses, the guitar’s reputation has declined. Even within indie rock circles, which once spun from the guitar fury of Dinosaur Jr. and Sonic Youth, club-banging synthesizers dominate. Tonight, however, three pioneering guitarists will make an argument for the instrument’s timeless significance. Philadelphia-based guitarist Chris Forsyth, co-founder of sonically adventurous trio Peeesseye, represents a post-John Fahey trajectory, combining Americana, psych-rock and the avant-garde while maintaining a unique voice of his own. Tom Carter, co-founder of legendary psych-outfit Charalambides, who tonight plays with experimental trio Sontag Shogun, creates minimal, glowing phrases of looped guitar that investigate bluegrass, out-folk and drone landscapes. Noveller, the solo project of Sarah Lipstate, produces ethereal layers of floating guitar bliss and colossal, intricate walls of radiant feedback. If seeking a fix of raw guitar power, look no further.
Sat., Jan. 22, 8pm. $6. Noveller, Chris Forsyth + Sontag Shogun & Tom Carter. Highwire Gallery, 2040 Frankford Ave. 215.426.2685. museumfire.com/events
PW's Music Issue 2014