Ben L. Robertson and Andrew Senna founded Seattle-based label Aphonia Recordings to promote artists who challenge the structures of popular music and to provide a place for the weird and bizarre. The label has released records by the likes of master cellist Derek M. Johnson and fuzz punks Mangled Bohemians, and has contributed acts to showcases like the Seattle Occultural Music Festival. This weekend, June 4–6, the label hosts its own showcase, the Aphonia Festival, at the Rendezvous (21+) and Gallery 1412 (all ages), highlighting the strange, harsh, and deafening bands that have helped make Aphonia a force in Seattle’s outré music community.
Tacoma-based noisemakers L.A. Lungs, who play Friday, use a whole slew of keyboards, pedals, and other odd gear to fry up acidic drones as dark and polluted as the windbags stuck in downtown gridlock that their name suggests. The duo's delay-soaked trances are deeply rooted in the weirdo chemistry of couple Afterthought Lung (Nathan Markiewicz) and Leeward Lung (Lori Peterson), and damned if their live show won't hypnotize you, jaw to the floor. Prepare for a different brand of sonic bliss in the same spot the following night, when the haunting ambiences of Paintings for Animals will wash over you like waves at a heavenly deserted beach. The range of beautiful and beastly sounds on display at the Aphonia Festival is a testament to the label's diverse discography, and it should make for a weekend of shows your ears won't soon forget.
Fri June 5: Aphonia Fest: L.A. Lungs, KRGA, Unicorns in the Snow, Mangled Bohemians at Gallery 1412, 8 pm, $5–$15 sliding-scale donations.
Fri June 5: Folk Rock Night at Q Cafe, 7:30 pm, $7.
Fri June 5: Kids and Animals, Ambulance, Piko Panda at Piecora's, 10 pm, $6.
Sat June 6: Aphonia Fest: Paintings for Animals, Derek M. Johnson, Daedelum, the Precambrian at Gallery 1412, 8 pm, $5–$15 sliding-scale donations.
Mon June 8: Emily Wells at the Vera Project, 7:30 pm, $8 ($7 w/club card).