Wednesday, June 20, 2012

JONNEINE ZAPATA intrigues...

In 1988 Brian Eno made an art installation for the Santa Monica Museum of Art that appeared to be white geometric shapes with Christmas tree-colored lights on them amidst a few very large white cubes, all in a darkened room. If that was all you took in at first gaze, that's all you saw. Most visitors left after a perplexed and befuddled minute or two.

However, fans of Eno's music and creative wit could predict there might be more to it. Elaine Drake and I looked around and then sat right down on the large art cubes, post-punks that we both were. Over time, all of the lights slowly changed colors and intensities on the various white cardboard shapes. Many of the subtle light changes turned out to be slow-motion projections from inconspicuous monitors. It was both a serene and stimulating art experience simultaneously.

The above is analogous to taking in singer/songwriter
JONNEINE ZAPATA in her solo artist mode, as Evita Corby, Electric Earl and I did June 18th earlier this week. The Southern California bred (but much traveled) artist eschewed her normal full band template for a residency at Club Los Globos accompanied by a single guitarist.
It was a performance of seemingly quiet intensity with pauses to underscore its strong emotions, just as in real life conversations about disturbing personal problems.

She's been compared to PJ Harvey for equaling her on the catharsis barometer, but if forced I'd hold out more for Martha Davis of The Motels, she of an equally beautiful albeit quite different voice. Like Zapata's admitted influence Nick Cave, there's always some uncomfortably dark truths beneath the outside beauty in both Davis and Zapata, puissant polish masking the interior voltage. Like the Eno art, serene but exciting.

Known for her unblinking thousand yard stare but aimed up close, personal and laser-like (see third photo down from top,) Jonneine becomes so utterly engrossed in her emotions onstage that audiences fall into the same zone like lost but compliantly pleased zombies. All this for a solo voice and single guitar wailing songs of love & dread that most club-goers have never
heard before. As Evita put it, "Jonneine owns the stage."

Video below with clearer sound than fan-shot ones that night...

NOTE: link directly back to if all elements such as photo layouts or videos aren't here.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...